Superintendent Bill Schad "hit the highlights" of the first phase of the Education Roundtable's P-16 Draft Proposal with a Power Point demonstration at the Clay Community Schools Board of Trustees meeting Thursday night. He reminded the Board that this is "only a draft" and that by the time the program is adopted it "may not look anything like" what he was discussing.
He went into very little detail about the 10 major points, but the Board was provided with booklets that further explained each point. The plan "for Improving Student Achievement" is supposed to provide a "comprehensive blueprint for aligning policies, resources and strategies." It will affect students of all ages and will make it necessary for the School Corporation and the state to examine the following:
- Academic Standards, Assessment and Accountability
- Teaching and Learning
- School and District Leadership
- Early Learning and School Readiness
- Eliminating Achievement Groups and Ensuring Progress for All Students
- Ensuring College and Workforce Success
- Dropout Prevention
- Higher Education and Continued Learning
- Efficient Use of Resources
Schad went on to say that Clay Community Schools is not in bad shape in any of these areas. In his opinion, "We're well on our way" and there is "very little we haven't started on yet."
Kathy Knust went through a P-16 Draft Corporation Summary, in which she gave the Board a look at the "overall" impact on Clay County. She discussed some of the changes that will need to made in these areas:
- Programs and Curriculum
- Staff Development
Funding for all the necessary changes will be the most difficult issue the School Corporation will face. Knust said that she "will be working on it" and that she will discuss this further with the Board at a later date.
The Board also heard from Linda Nicoson, who plans to add on to the Memorial Garden, which is dedicated to Northview High School students who have passed away. A sidewalk will be built from the driveway up to the memorial stone, the stone will be enlarged around the edge and two park benches will be placed on a cement slab. Lights will also be implemented. Nicoson said the money is already there; she just needs manpower.
Board members Len Fischer and Terry Barr both thanked Nicoson for her efforts on the project. Fischer described the monument as "sobering to look at."
The possibility of using Performance Contracting instead of Public Works Project to fund the remaining air conditioning projects and install fiber optics in the northern end of the county was introduced to the Board. Schad gave a list of the advantages he sees in doing so, which were:
- Greater funding flexibility
- It enjoys taxpayers support
- Guaranteed performance
- Fewer costs
- It is easy to implement
Schad feels that if they use Performance Contracting, they will be able to install air conditioning in both Meridian Elementary and Clay City Elementary by the end of next summer. They will also be able to go ahead with the fiber optics and still have money that can be used in maintaining the schools.
He went on to explain that there has been some confusion over the fiber optics project. Many people have mistakenly thought that it will put Clay City schools even farther behind the northern Clay schools in the way of technology. However, according to Schad, Clay City already has a far more advanced system than the rest of the School Corporation and that the fiber optics will only be giving the northern end of the county a chance to "catch up."
Members of the Board felt they needed more information on the subject before committing to anything. Therefore, the issue was placed on the future agenda and will be a topic at the November meeting.
In other business, the Board voted 4-2 to keep Jeff Boyll on as the Corporation's attorney and unanimously to grant permission to return printers that were donated to the Corporation by Dr. Darla Heck-Sacopolous and are no longer needed and to pass an amendment to the Section 125 Plan.