WARSAW — Warsaw Community Schools’ board of trustees heard about leaps forward in education at the elementary school level as well as in the adult arena at its monthly board work session Tuesday, June 18.
Steven Ferber of the Gateway Adult Education program told the board that despite recent budget cuts, the program is still advancing forward.
“We’ve been operating on a skeleton crew and I’m just amazed at what our teaching staff has been able to do,” he said.
Ferber touted a recent partnership with Robinson Construction Co. where 11 of the company’s employees received certification in welding.
The program offers education opportunities in adult basic eduction, English learning, hospitality and logistics, as well as other fields.
“Our adult basic education is leading the region in level gains,” Ferber said. “Were not as big as some of the others, but we’re leading the region. Our reason for progress is nothing shy of building relationships. We’ve got to continue to work on our English language learners.”
Ferber added that he’d like to add more training for students seeking education in machining.
“We also serve Rochester, so that has been a challenge that we’re going to need to serve better in the coming year,” he said, adding that the program will be graduating 30 students on Friday, June 21. “I’m really proud of the staff and the efforts they’ve made to make connections in the community. The word is getting out that it’s a positive place.”
Ferber was congratulated on a job well done by WCS Superintendent Dr. David Hoffert. “You’ve created a strong path forward,” Hoffert said.
Madison Megalodon Project
Erin Blake, Digital Learning Specialist at Madison Elementary School, presented a project to the board where 86 students in the school’s fourth grade were given a lesson on object-based learning, married with the use of technology.
“I chose the Megalodon because kids love sharks,” said Blake.
Blake said the project used all available learning tools to “recapture critical thinking skills and wonderment.”
During the project, which was done in collaboration with an area museum, the students became more and more interested as the project became more visual, including a taped outline of a 60-foot Megalodon in a Madison hallway.
“It created a sense of ownership with the kids,” said Blake. “As we moved into more marrying with technology, we started marrying that technology and the kids’ minds just opened up,” Blake said. “We can expose our Madison students to so much more than before. Their minds just exploded.”
Hoffert applauded Blake’s efforts. “Thank you for being a great example on how to do this,” he said.
In other news, the board:
- Was introduced to Tracy Beiler, an employee with the corporation’s human resources department who has been with WCS for five years.
- Heard from Hoffert about staffing needs at WCS. According to Hoffert, WCS is still looking for personnel in custodial, paraprofessional and food services.