O’FALLON – Central Elementary School Principal Jayson Baker informed the Central 104 Board of Education that Central staff recently spent time discussing a five year plan for the school.
Baker’s report, which was given at Monday evening’s Board of Education meeting, was positive and expressed optimism.
“We got a really good dialogue going,” Baker said. “We narrowed in on four big goals for our school.”
According to Baker, the four items that Central Elementary wishes to improve upon over the next five years are as followed:
• Increase collaboration time as a school
• Increase community involvement/ influence outsider perception of the “great things” going on at Central and make the public more knowledgeable about District 104
• Adopt/create a school-wide/district-wide Social-Emotional Curriculum with an emphasis on Growth Mindset
• Review, improve and customize spiraling curricula to include more student-led learning situations
In other business…
• Board member Laurie Burian spoke about her experience at the 2018 IASB Conference in November.
During the conference, Burian listened in on key address by Civil Rights icon Ruby Bridges. Burian described it as “inspiring.”
Prior to the conference, Burian said that she read a book about school desegregation from a historical and legal perspective.
“To hear Ms. Bridges talk about desegregation from a child’s point of view was inspiring. Her experiences showed that true social change is not only achieved by legislative remedy but may require the personal courage, commitment and sacrifice of everyday citizens who, only later, are viewed as heroes,” Burian said in her conference report.
Burian said that she also attended the Legal & Administrative Perspectives on Transgender Students.
Burian said that a panel of two social workers shared their experiences and outlined best supportive practices to ensure the safety and availability to learn for transgender students.
She said that they summarized the existing legal framework as well as recognized the current political climate which has led to a lack of clarity regarding policy and procedures.
Burian outlined the key points of the report:
• Identify student needs.
• Identify access options.
• Identify privacy options for all students.
“They also stressed the need to be aware of community sentiment as well as modifications that may be needed to school facilities to accommodate effected students,” Burian said in her conference report.
• Superintendent Dawn Elser said that Central 104 has hired a new Director of Technology, Erica Sandman, and that she has “hit the ground running.”
Elser said that Sandman has already made calls and received new cameras for the district.
• According to Elser, the Board Academy Series will start on Jan. 22 at the Public Safety Building, 285 N. 7 Hills Road, at 5:30. The topic will be School Board Governance instead of Community Engagement.
Topics covered at the Jan. 22 board academy will be: Policy development, Roberts Rules of Order, Board member relations, Communication, IASB services. Board presidents from local districts will be presenting.
After the first board academy meeting on Jan. 22, sessions will begin to be held at the O’Fallon City Council Chambers, 255 S. Lincoln, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
• Principal of Joseph Arthur Middle School (JAMS) Tron Young said that the Conference Spelling Bee was held on Friday, Jan. 11 and that the middle school team came in first place.
Eighth grader Kourtnie Macon came in second place overall and fifth grader Jeremiah Reed came in third overall at the Spelling Bee.
“I’m really excited that the top six — three of them were from Joseph Arthur. They did an awesome job there,” Young said.
• Young also said that students from JAMS Student Council collected over 1000 cans for the O’Fallon Food Pantry in the month of December.