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BOE to vote on school calander

BEVERLY — During the Fort Frye Local Schools Board of Education monthly meeting, it was decided that the board will vote on the schools 2021-2022 school calendar in February.

Board members at Thursday’s meeting also received updates on the middle school building planning and were told that schools could be potentially used as polling sites.

The proposed calendar will be similar to what the school district has used in the past, starting a little bit later than most in the district, said Superintendent Stephanie Starcher. Staff and faculty would return on Aug. 23 and students’ first day would be Aug. 26.

Under the proposed calendar, students will have holidays off, including three for Thanksgiving and seven days off for winter break. Four scheduled two-hour delays for professional development and four two-hour early dismissals will also be in the schedule.

“We have a process in place where we have representatives from the school system to give input about where to place the holiday breaks, when to start and end school,” Starcher said. “One thing we’ve learned from this year of COVID is to expect the unexpected and to be willing to be flexible in your school calendar.”

Starcher also gave an update on the middle school planning process. She she notified current fifth, sixth and seventh grade students that middle school will be put at the southwestern end of the building for next year, along with a general notification to K-12 students as well.

Starcher said Fort Frye High School Assistant Principal Rachael Tullius had her first team virtual meeting with her middle school leadership team on Wednesday night. The team is made up of teachers in each department and with the idea of what will work best for everyone in the building.

With reducing the number of polling voting sites in the area, the Washington County Board of Elections informed Starcher that some schools would be used for elections in May. Due to being handicap accessible, easily located in the community, and parking, Starcher said they could put the voting site in the school’s gym and still regularly attend classes.

A new math curriculum for K-5 students will also be voted on in February’s board meeting, presented by Curriculum Director Nichol Honaker. Called “Big Ideas,” the program will allow the school to vertically align the teaching of mathematics and learning progression through the grades. It meets the needs of all learnings, ongoing assessment and remote learning capability, and offers support for students with connectivity issues.

The program integrates with Google Classroom, providing ease of use for teachers, students and families. It also offers ongoing professional learning provided by expert trainers for teachers and administrators. Honaker said teachers will start training with the new program in April and implement “Big Ideas” with students in August if approved. The program will be a six-year contract totaling $49,423.50

“We spent a lot of time and research into studying which curriculum we’re going to adopt, we make it open to the public for review, and our teachers have input, which I think is important in the process,” Starcher said.

To start off the meeting, Fort Frye’s FFA members gave a parliamentary procedure team presentation. Under the Agricultural Education teacher Abby Campbell, students Madyson Long, Maggie Fulton, Sydney Barnes, MaKenna Long, Kail Bauerbach and James Shuster conducted an official business meeting for those in attendance.

Next month’s school board meeting will be Feb. 18 at Salem-Liberty Elementary School.

Contact Tyler Bennett at

tbennett@newsandsentinel.com

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