Leading Creek Elementary School Principal Kim Freeland hosted the school’s annual Local School Improvement Council meeting Monday, March 13, with the Lewis County Board of Education.
Freeland told the school board about LCES’s goals for 2017, including fencing around the playing field to the right of the school. She said she already has received commitments from parents and community members to help get a fence up, including labor. Freeland said it would be nice for the field to be used for the school and the community for softball, baseball and other activities.
Superintendent Joseph Mace agreed, saying that liability exposure rests with the county.
“We’re not talking [about] a huge amount of money. It has to be a priority,” he added.
Freeland acknowledged there is room for improvement regarding testing, but said that two grades are already above a year’s growth in reading, language arts and math.
The school is providing several opportunities for parents and community involvement throughout the school year. These include Open House, Grandparents Day, Fall Fest, conferences, family movie night, family math night, family game night, Bingo for Books, Spring Fling and music programs. She credited the Parent Teacher Organization with facilitating some of these events.
Title I teacher Kim Bonnett conducts small reading groups in the lower grade levels, working with kindergarten and first grade daily. She also has a prize program for accelerated readers. Bonnett develops programs for families based on education, and always conducts a parent training at each music program.
School leaders noted issues with the playing field and damaged floor tiles throughout the school. Freeland said a representative from City Construction would be out to the school this week to assess the situation.
“There has to be a resolution,” she said.
Freeland said she is meeting with Special Education Supervisor Dr. Carol Williams this week to work out solutions to special education staffing needs.
The school board also discussed the following business:
—Lewis County High School’s Math Field Day team was honored for placing first in regional math field day competition, held March 8, at Alderson Broaddus University.
—School bus driver and Lewis County Park Director John Shaffer addressed the board regarding the Summer Food Bus for children. Shaffer wanted to make sure the school board was aware that the bus is welcome at the park. He also said the park board is supportive of the bus coming into the park to feed students.
—West Virginia Education Association member Kim Bonnett spoke to the board about her recent trip to Washington, D.C. Bonnett travels to Washington, D.C. quarterly for meetings, and the most recent meeting involved lobbying members of Congress on school-related issues. She also attends leadership trainings and summits, with the most recent summit held in February.
—LCHS Special Education Teacher Jill Balser requested that the board look into increasing the supplement teachers get paid for extra curricular activities. Currently teachers are paid $25 if it’s an activity where students are present, otherwise $20. Balser said that increasing that to $40 per hour outside of the regular school day would suffice, and it’s competitive with Upshur and Harrison Counties. Balser also said the policy has not been updated in some time.
—The levy rates for fiscal year ending June 30, 2018, and the instructional budget for fiscal year 2018 were approved. The next regular board meeting will be March 27 at Robert L. Bland Middle School. RLBMS will hold it’s LSIC meeting at 6 p.m. with the regular meeting to follow at 7 p.m.