An update on the Teacher Leadership and Compensation (TLC) was one of the highlights of Monday’s meeting of the Perry Community School District Board of Education.
Director of Teach and Learning Kevin Vidergar informed the board that progress was advancing at a steady pace toward the full implementation of TLC, which will begin in earnest in the 2016-17 school year.
Vidergar noted that ensuring all students are learning and their achievement is being positively addressed were main goals of TLC, as was the promotion of leadership among teachers.
TLC will offer mentors for all first and second year teachers, as well as veteran teachers who may be new to the Perry district, with a long-range goal of giving all teachers in the district instructional coaching. In addition, those teachers in their first and second years will have a personalized mentoring program created for them in order to help improve their effectiveness in the classroom.
A minimum beginning salary of $33,500 for teachers is also a goal of the program.
Shannon Cline will be resigning his fifth grade teaching position to become the Mentor Coordinator, with Jennifer Nicholson an elementary instructional coach while Laura Coller, Brenda Mintun and Wendy Bollhoefer will become new secondary school instructional coaches. All will have to have their classroom or current positions filled by new hirings.
Vidergar reported that 32 positions as professional learning facilitators, which will amounts to two leaders per team, will begin to be hired in late February. Up to 15 mentor positions could be required, but the full need will not be determined until April. Filling these slots will not require new hiring by the district.
Superintendent Lynn Ubben reported to the board on various facility projects and gave an overview of fiscal year 2017 early budget information, noting that the legislature had yet to set the final numbers, thus leaving districts statewide unsure of funding levels. She hoped to have more information for the next monthly meeting of the board.
Perry juniors Devon Archer, Emma Olejniczak and Brooke Huntington reported to the board about the upcoming Senior Prom. The prom is set for April 30 with a theme of “Enchanted Forest.” The walk-in will begin at 6 p.m. at the Perry Peforming Arts Center, with the dance to follow at the local National Guard Armory and the after-prom to be held at the Perry Middle School gym/cafeteria.
The trio reported on their numerous fundraising efforts before requesting a donation for the board, which swiftly approved a $500 allotment.
Director Linda Andorf shared with the board her positive reactions from recent visits to the Perry Elementary. She remarked on the attention given the students, their eagerness to learn and her appreciation that each grade was utilizing a shared direction and plan of instruction. Andorf also pointed, in particular, to the level of math the students were learning.
The board approved a School Budget Review Committee for Grandwood, a special education program which serves students with mental and behavioral problems.
Also approved was a Modified Supplemental Amount application to be used for Dropout Prevention and other needs.
PHS Counselor Tami Valline discussed the issue. She noted there are four factors that typically point to a possible dropout: Attendance, Progress in School, Little or No Connection to the School and/or Low Achievement in Reading or Math.
The grant for the 2016-17 school year is $561,202. The district must apply for the grant each year, with the allowable amount based upon enrollment.
The board approved the purchase of a new bus after hearing a review of bids presented by Transportation Director Troy Griffith.
An early graduation request was given approval, as were several board policy revisions, the renewal of cooperative sponshorships for soccer (Panorama to Perry), bowling (Perry to Waukee) and boys swimming (Perry to Boone).
A “Lift-A-Thon” fundraiser for the Strength and Conditioning department, to be used for the purchase of new equipment, was given the go-ahead, as was the hiring of a new assistant high school/middle school cross country coach along with a the acceptance of resignations and transfers.
Superintendent Ubben also announced that the next monthly meeting would be held March 7 due to Spring Break. The meeting will be held in the Brady Library at PHS at 6 p.m.