Justin Gross, Meg Frideres, Katie Borton and Deb Haywood gave the Board an update on their recent travel to California for a conference organized by Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Frideres, Borton and Haywood reported they were encouraged that a lot of what they learned at the conference is beginning to happen in Nevada. Some of the main themes the Nevada teachers observed included the importance of establishing positive relationships with their students, getting to know their pupils rather than assuming anything and learning from one another as educators.
To that end, Director of School Improvement and Innovation Justin Gross gave the board an update on the district’s Teacher Leadership and Compensation (TLC) program that is in its second year of implementation. A recent survey completed by 99 of the 110 staff members within the district revealed that the majority of teachers within the district are receiving support from the various TLC positions that are leading to changes to teachers instruction and student learning. While coaching is still optional for teachers to engage in, Gross was encouraged by the data and the fact that more and more staff are engaging in coaching with a TLC member. Gross also mentioned that Nevada’s TLC program is unique compared to other districts due to the fact that Nevada’s TLC Instructional Guides continue to teach 25 percent of the time in their own classrooms.
In other news:
• the board discussed a number of improvement projects for the summer.
The middle school roof is in need of replacement and the district has been budgeting annual repairs for some time. The Board discussed options for roof replacement in sections over the next few years, rather than waiting for a possible middle school renovation that could be years away. They discussed starting with the section over the gym, as there have been significant repairs there.
The resurfacing of the stadium track is a big item. It is part of the five-year plan published three years ago and is on schedule. Originally $100,000 was budgeted in the plan for this project, but on the positive side, the quote approved by the board Monday was $58,800. This work will be completed this summer.
The board approved carpet replacement at the middle school (band room, chorus room and one classroom), and the high school (gym balcony track). Minor carpet replacement was previously approved at Central Elementary by the superintendent.
Annual tuckpointing, to repair brick deterioration on the district’s buildings, is an ongoing improvement, also published in the five-year plan three years ago.
The Board also discussed landscaping, wanting to solve ongoing issues of water washing out mulch around the auditorium and addressing student foot traffic through flower areas.
• the Board also approved a revision to the district’s early retirement policy. This policy has only applied to certified employees, plus classified 12-month employees. The changes makes all classifications of employees eligible under the early retirement policy.
“This policy didn’t sit right with me,” said Superintendent Dr. Steve Gray. “I don’t feel we are treating some of our employees fairly under current policy, and all of our employees are valuable assets to the district.”
• Middle School Principal Chris Schmidt mentioned that the school needs volunteers for the girls’ conference track meet on May 5. Contact Kate Huse if you are interested in volunteering.