Disability Week and curriculum discussed at the October Lincoln County R-III School Board meeting
The monthly meeting of the Lincoln County R-III School Board was held on Tuesday, October 15. The meeting highlighted the third week as Disability History and Awareness Week, a curricular presentation from Ninth Grade Center Counselor, Cheryl Wehde and Troy Buchanan High School Counselor Kim Jansen and a curriculum and instruction update concerning the district’s transition to the common core from Assistant Superintendent Todd Culbertson and Director of Secondary Curriculum Mary Ingmire.
Following the meeting being called to order by Ron Mills, Board President, those in attendance were led in the Pledge of Allegiance by Jan Becherer. Jan, a retired Troy Buchanan High School Teacher, had previously retired from the U.S. Air Force as a Lieutenant Colonel. The consent agenda was then approved and unanimously passed.
The third week of October was adopted as Disability History and Awareness Week by the Lincoln County R-III School Board at the October 16, 2012 Board of Education meeting. The resolution reads:
Whereas, there are approximately 126,000 students with disabilities educated by Missouri public schools; and
Whereas, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 is founded on four principles: inclusion, full participation, economic self-sufficiency, and equality of opportunity for all people with disabilities; and
Whereas, a key method of promoting these four principles is for our schools to recognize the contributions by people with disabilities to our society and provide instruction in disability history, people with disabilities, and the disability rights movement through school curriculum, school assemblies, and other school activities; and
Now Therefore, Be It Resolved by the School Board of Lincoln County R-III School District that the Board urges our schools to provide intensive instruction on disability history, people with disabilities, and the disability rights movement, especially during the third week of October, and periodically throughout the school year, and encourages other institutions to conduct and promote educational activities on those subjects.
Approved by the Lincoln County R-III Board of Education on October 16, 2012.
In order to recognize Disability Awareness week, Ninth Grade Center student, Dat Nguyen, gave a presentation consisting of his daily school routine with Ninth Grade Center Lifeskills teacher, Ms. Cox. The presentation was full of laughs as Dat humored School Board members with his love of game shows and one-liners ending his presentation saying, “My name is Dat Nguyen and I approve this message.”
Ninth Grade Center Counselor, Cheryl Wehde, then gave a presentation regarding counseling curriculum and comprehensive guidance, which includes academic, career and personal social development through guidance curriculum, individual planning and responsive services. Cheryl felt there was a disjointed effort throughout grades 7-12 with career lessons and a lack of secondary classroom lessons and students were not thinking about their future plans or career interests. As a result she created a student portfolio project for all students, which allows them to store information about post secondary learning, career research, interest inventories and study skills. The students are allotted time during academic lab to work on their project and are given a grade and a credit for their efforts. The project helps students prepare for life after high school through thoughtful planning of future classes, early recognition of career interests and the ability to establish short and long-term goals.
One of the biggest obstacles Mrs. Wehde has dealt with when helping students prepare their portfolios is technology. Kim Jansen, Troy Buchanan High School Career and College Counselor, explained how a program recently purchased by the district would allow students to track what would normally be in their binder, online. Naviance will allow students to choose classes online, manage course plans during their four years in high school to plan for college or careers. Students will also be able to apply for colleges and plan to meet with college representatives through the program as well. Mrs. Jansen looks forward to seeing the improvements Naviance will make for the students at Troy Buchanan High School.
Community Relations Specialist, April Bryant, updated the Board on a recent Long Range Planning Committee meeting. The meeting showed that 80 percent of the committee believed the district needed to build a new middle school. During the meeting committee members also discussed the need for a new fine arts building within the district.
As with many school districts across the nation the Troy R-III School District is transitioning to the Common Core Standards. Assistant Superintendent, Todd Culbertson, and Director of Secondary Curriculum, Mary Ingmire, updated the Board on changes in curriculum that are affecting the district. The Common Core Standards focuses on writing throughout all subjects not just English, meaning teachers are now going to have to include writing in lessons in all subjects. Common Core will also set standards for mathematics and writing that will remain consistent through all schools and grades in the district. This will make it easier for students to move from one class, building, or perhaps even district, as they will all be focusing on the same curriculum and skills.
The next meeting of the Lincoln County R-III School Board will be on Tuesday, November 19. The regularly scheduled monthly Board of Education meeting will be held in the District’s Central Offices at 951 West College (Troy). The open session meeting will begin at 5:00 p.m. in the Powell Conference Room with a brief recess at 5:50 p.m. The Board will reconvene at 6:00 p.m. in the Board of Education meeting room.