The Kansas Board of Education on Wednesday approved USD 428’s Continuous Learning Plan and waiver of attendance application without any questions, USD 428’s Public Information Officer Andrea Bauer reports.
At a school board meeting on April 3, Superintendent Khris Thexton explained that the waiver of attendance application is required by the state because the district won’t fulfill the usual school term of 1,116 hours of education in the schools. The district was only open for 840 hours during the 2019-2020 school year and requested a waiver from the remaining 276 hours.
“While education looks different during this time, we will continue with our Continuous Learning Plan through May 21. The school year will not be extended,” Bauer noted.
More information about the Continuous Learning Plan can be found online at GreatBendSchools.net. There is a page dedicated to resources and details for students, families and community.
Leave the blankets at home
The school board met again last Monday and had the first reading of 2020-2021 student handbooks, teacher handbooks, and athletic and activity handbooks.
One proposed change to the student handbook adds “blankets” to the list of sleeping attire that students can’t wear to school, except on designated days. This is part of the school dress code, which currently reads, “No sleeping attire, including pajamas, house shoes and robes allowed except on designated days.” Superintendent Khris Thexton explained that a school might have a spirit day where students wear pajamas, but on regular school days the sleeping attire and blankets are not appropriate. “Just on rare occasions would they allow it.”
Other proposed changes:
Courses that are dropped after the first three weeks of the first semester will be recorded as withdrawn/fail (W/F). Schedule changes requested past these dates will require administrative approval. (The word “first” that is highlighted has been added.)
The policy on school assemblies still notes that each teacher is responsible for the conduct of students, but the following line is deleted: “Teachers are expected to be at all assemblies, be on time and sit with the students.”
The board is expected to approve a final draft of the handbooks in May.
Outside Validation Team
In other business at last week’s meeting (on April 13), Assistant Superintendent John Popp reported that the Kansas Education Systems Accreditation (KESA) Outside Validation Team (OVT) was originally scheduled to visit our district on Thursday, April 16.
“To comply with the COVID-19 situation, the OVT chair will meet with district administrators through an online conference to discuss goals and plans for the next five years. The goals include increasing the rigor in the classrooms and focusing on building relationships with stakeholders,” Popp reported.
Director of Teaching and Learning Tricia Reiser reported that professional development courses for teachers will still be offered this summer as planned, although she is not sure at this point what form the classes will take.