WARSAW — Three Warsaw Community School building projects are taking shape quickly, as the WCS Board of Trustees learned during its regular work session Monday, July 12.
Washington Elementary and Edgewood Middle School are still slated to be ready in time for school to start. With the projects rapidly nearing completion, the main focus will be on fulfilling safety features necessary for the buildings to be put to use.
Project supervisor Jim LeMasters noted that, while WCS made a few changes along the way, the projects have proceeded as closely to the promised timeline as possible. WCS Superintendent Dr. David Hoffert added that, in a worst-case scenario the corporation would push back the start of the school year, which at this time is set for Aug. 15.
The new Lincoln Elementary School building has also taken shape. Both Hoffert and LeMasters noted workers at all three locations are on site early in the morning, even on weekends.
As far as curriculum, the Indiana Department of Education has asked WCS to be one of three school corporations statewide to attend a conference in Virginia pertaining to a new testing model. IDOE has also asked WCS to be a pilot district, if they choose, to use the program and report back to the state.
Representatives of WCS will also attend an annual conference in Orlando, Fla., pertaining to a program that trains special-needs students to work in the community. This includes internships and jobs with wages that are the same as for workers who do not have special needs. The program focuses on ages 18-22.
The new K-8 math curriculum, Math Envision, has arrived. Teachers will undergo training to learn how best to implement the program. WCS Chief Academic Officer David Robertson noted in his presentation that, unlike past curriculum changes, this one is more flexible and allows teachers to use tools and other elements from the past curriculum that worked well for them.
WCS is bringing in a group once a month to train teachers and paraprofessionals on how to best work with students on the autism spectrum. The group is affiliated with the IU Medical School Department of Psychiatry. In April, WCS will determine whether needs have been met or if further training is necessary. The cost of the program will be $25,000.
Because Lakeview Middle School will have the most students on the spectrum this year, the program will be implemented there and at the high school.
- The schools hope to receive a federal grant to help with the purchase of computer tablets that allow students to type in Braille. WCS Director of Special Services Amy Hobbs noted two elementary students currently use Braille but that the typing equipment available to them is outdated.
- WCS has consulted with a company that is working on a plan to rebuild the bus garage. When ready, the project will go to bid and a company will be chosen.
- Some changes and updates have been made to the schools’ classified policies and procedures handbook, pertaining to topics like emergency maintenance pay and confidentiality.