School Board News from Feb. 26

School Board News from Feb. 26
Posted on 03/01/2019
Technology will continue to be an integral part of student learning in the Tahoma School District, but it will need to become more accessible to meet the district’s Future Ready vision, said members of the Technology Model Review committee in a report to the Tahoma School Board Tuesday night.

The committee was established by the School Board to assess classroom technology, following failure of the 2018 technology levy. Kimberly Allison, Instructional Technology and Future Ready Skills Coordinator, said the model review committee concluded that there needs to be a “paradigm shift” that raises expectations and firmly establishes technology usage as an essential element in every classroom, rather than something that is encouraged but not required.

A vision statement from the group, which is part of a graphic chart the group created, states:
“In the Tahoma School District, technology is leveraged and prioritized as a strategic investment to support empowered and engaging learning and teaching, and help ensure all students gain the Future Ready Skills necessary in order to leave our system with a valued, viable, and personalized plan for lifelong success.”

With the vision established, the next step is to turn those ideas into an operations plan. A second committee, the Tahoma Technology Advisory Committee, will begin working on a draft technology plan for the district that specifies how technology will be applied to the district’s learning curriculum. That plan also will become the basis for estimating how much money will be needed for classroom technology and will form the blueprint for the next technology levy in 2020.

Dawn Wakeley, executive director of Teaching and Learning, told the School Board that the committee will present a technology plan to the school board in late May or early June.

In other business Feb. 26, the School Board:

*Learned about a new high school math curriculum, called enVision math, that is recommended for adoption. The curriculum, which features online resources as well as textbooks, covers Algebra I, Algebra II, and Geometry. The School Board will vote on final adoption of the curriculum at one of its March business meetings.

*Reviewed a consultant’s report on safe-walking routes in the school district. The consultant, Jo Porter, is a former transportation director for Issaquah School District and also serves as a transportation consultant. Her conclusion, after reviewing safe-walking routes at the four schools in the district where walking is an option, is that Tahoma “was thorough in their process and implementation for creating safe-walking routes to schools. They followed Washington State rules, regulations and guidelines. … The current suggested safe-walking routes mirror walking routes in other school districts who follow OSPI (Superintendent of Public Instruction) regulations.” The full report can be viewed on the Tahoma Transportation web page.

*Approved and signed a joint proclamation with the Maple Valley City Council that celebrates the community’s shared values of “compassion, inclusion, respect, and dignity,” and expresses commitment to “building an environment, and a community, in which everyone is valued and everyone has the opportunity to thrive.” The proclamation also denounces “verbal and physical acts to threaten or intimidate people” and “the politics of division, isolation, and hate.” The School Board and City Council will further discuss the proclamation during a joint meeting on Monday, March 4, at 6 p.m. in the Board Room at Central Services Center.

*Viewed a presentation by Tahoma High School’s We the People team, which will compete in the national We the People competition, held near Washington, D.C., in April. Four students, representing one area of the Constitution, presented information and arguments to the School Board and then answered questions. The team is led by high school government teacher Gretchen Wulfing.
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