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District moving to unified ELA curriculum
GBHS program of studies approved
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Each grade school in Great Bend USD 428 has its own approach when it comes to teaching reading, but that will change next year, Assistant Superintendent John Popp said.
The K-6 English Language Arts (ELA) committee will make a recommendation to the school board in March that will include a unified curriculum for Eisenhower, Jefferson, Lincoln, Park and Riley schools.
This is the culmination of a year and a half of work, including a semester of an intensive pilot that involved 14 teachers, all the instructional coaches and hours of professional development, Popp reported at the Dec. 12 school board meeting.
Popp also reported on the 2015-2016 state assessment results released by the Kansas State Board of Education in November. They can be viewed online at
These test results reflect scores in math and ELA.
“We are a little bit behind the state,” Popp said. However, there has been improvement. “You can see significant growth.”

Program of Studies
At the Dec. 12 meeting, the board also approved the new Program of Studies book that describes all courses offered at Great Bend High School. GBHS Principal Tim Friess said the Transition to Algebra course that was added as a pilot program last spring has been officially added to the course offerings, and a junior level of Consumer Math has been added.
Computer Applications has returned to the list. “We didn’t teach it for a year,” he said.
New fine arts courses for next year are Printmaking, Jewelry and 2-D Portfolio.

Dishwasher purchase
In other business, the board approved the purchase of a dishwasher for the central kitchen, accepting the low bid of $40,102 from Hobart Sales and Service. It will be installed over the spring break.