POMEROY — Progress reports on the state mandated teacher evaluation program, the bullying prevention program in the schools, and the organization of a youth basketball program were presented at Tuesday night’s meeting of the Meigs Local Board of Education.
As for the teacher evaluation, each of the principals gave a report on the progress being made toward implementing Ohio’s teacher evaluation program which is mandated by the state in an effort to move forward toward the hallmark of effective teaching which is judged by student learning.
While the program does not become mandatory until next year when all districts in the state must be involved, Superintendent Rusty Bookman said that the Meigs Local principals opted for getting a head start in the evaluation process now.
He described the process as a “normal evaluation using a new system” but one which requires lots more time to get completed. “While it isn’t mandatory until next year, our people decided to get started right.” He also noted that 50 percent of the evaluation score of each teacher is based on student performance. For those who can’t meet the state requirements there is a process for removal from the classroom, Bookman said. He complimented the principals for beginning the process now and the Meigs Local Teachers Association for being cooperation which expedites the process.
The ultimate goal as stated by Charlotte Danielson of ODE is that “A principal or a superintendent must be able to say to the school board and the public: ‘Everyone who teaches here is good - and here’s how I know.’”
David Deem, Meigs Middle School assistant principal, reported on bullying in the schools and what efforts are being made to curb the problem. During the summer, Deem attended a seminar on the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program which offered ways to identify a bully and the victim and then to get involved and do something about it. The emphasis, said Deem, is to identify those who bully and those who are bullied and then work on a plan of action to eliminate the issue.
Meeting with the Board was David Kight, Meigs varsity basketball coach, who outlined plans for organizing a Meigs Marauder youth basketball league for fourth, fifth and six graders with the goal of providing an opportunity for learning the right skills for future competitive events. Kight described it as a Saturday program run by volunteers. The program will start near the end of November and go into February. Several parent volunteers were present for the meeting and expressed their support for the program.
Board Member Ryan Mahr noted that the Board “doesn’t govern youth leagues since no school funding is involved and therefor the matter is not a Board issue.” The matter of equal opportunity was brought up by Larry Tucker, who stressed his concern that “every kid be given the same opportunity” mentioning boys and girls, as well as those from economically depressed homes. He was assured by Kight that arrangements could be made through the parent volunteers to assure equal opportunity.
During the meeting, Treasurer/CFO Mark Rhonemus presented the five year financial forecast required by Ohio Department of Education and an annual spending plan. The report shows the district moving into a deficit position. (Details in follow-up story,)
Personnel hired during the meeting included Darla Haning as a full-time bus driver; Delma Karr as a substitute cook; Gar Haggy as a substitute custodian; and Dreama English, Jennifer Davidson and Tasha Kuhn as substitute personal assistants for the current school year. Denise Arnold was hired as the Meigs High School newspaper advisor.