(Gillette, Wyo.) The School Board met Tuesday night and, as is customary for the December meeting, took steps to reorganize the board for the coming year.
The Board voted unanimously to retain the same slate of officers: Ann Ochs – Chair, Lisa Durgin – Vice-Chair, David Foreman – Treasurer, Andrea Hladky – Clerk/Assistant Treasurer.
Ochs, Foreman and Durgin will continue to serve on BOCHES, the Board of Cooperative Higher Education Services. Hladky will sit on BOCES, the Board of Cooperative Education Services. Foreman and Toni Bell will sit on the Audit Committee.
Taking care of some regular business, the board heard an update on the AdvancED Performance Accreditation from Deputy Superintendent Dr. Alex Ayres and Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum Kelly Hornby. According to the report, AdvancED provides the Index of Education Quality, which compiles its ratings from three categories: leadership capacity, learning capacity and resource capacity. On a scale of 100 to 400, Campbell County School District #1 is rated at 346.63. View the full study here.
“We’re doing great work in our schools and in our organization to improve student learning and it shows in the reports today,” said Hornby. Of the 31 standards measured by the report, Campbell County School District exceeded in 18 of them.
According to the AdvancED Engagement Review Report, “Accreditation is pivotal to leveraging education quality and continuous improvement. Using a set of rigorous research based standards, the accreditation process examines the whole institution — the program, the cultural context and the community of stakeholders — to determine how well the parts work together to meet the needs of learners.”
The overall tone of the review was positive, but it also outline two specific improvement opportunities aimed at allowing the organization to reach a higher level of performance.
Improvement Priority #1 – Develop and implement formal, systematic processes to evaluate the effectiveness of the organization’s programs including academic initiatives and all programs that support student learning.
Improvement Priority #2 – Evaluate the effectiveness of the current academic and career planning services provided to students and implement strategies to increase the student use of counseling services in support of students’ academic, social/emotional, and career planning needs.
One of the lowest ranking survey items is in college and career planning. “About half of our middle and high school students reported they had not been in the counseling office. And about a third of our high school students have not worked with counselors on college or career planning,” said Ayres. “So, we want to connect with everybody and we have some work to do there.”
“We have a wonderful secondary counseling staff. It’s just finding ways to find time for them and I think this new structure is going to work quite well,” continued Ayres.
The AdvancED report is still pending review by the AdvancED Accreditation Commission and will be made final in January.
Board Chair Ann Ochs asked Superintendent Boyd Brown to consider some sort of district wide celebration. “This is quite the feat to have a report like this coming from NCA, we really need to do something to celebrate,” said Ochs. “I really do think a week of jeans would be called for.” Ochs said she would leave the details of the celebration up to the Brown and his staff.