WINTERSVILLE - With more and more high school students choosing to skip traditional high school and take advantage of online courses, Indian Creek Local School District officials have decided it is time to keep up with the trend.
T.C. Chappelear of the Ohio Valley Educational Service Center of Cambridge presented information to school board members during Thursday's meeting.
"There has been much research into this type of learning and it shows that by 2019, 50 percent of high school courses will be offered online," he explained. "The district is in the running for an E Tech Ohio Blended Learning grant, which is trying to get schools to develop innovative learning tools to work into regular high school courses.
"I met with a team of educators from the district to discuss what strategy would best work for the students of the district," he noted. "We concluded that the rotation model would be the best fit, where students would be in the classroom two days a week, spend one day a week online working with a teacher through a webcam and spend two days a week online at their own pace."
Chappelear explained that the district, if chosen, could be eligible for $80,000 in May to use toward the development of such a program. By the 2012-2013 school year, another $50,000 could be implemented.
"The goal is to have the new technology implemented by the fall of 2013," he said.
There are 60 applicants statewide that are competing for the grant, he noted.
The board also received a brief update on the new middle school project from Brian Kessler of Richard L. Bowen and Associates.
"By the end of May, we suspect that the cement will be poured for the gymnasium," he explained. "We currently have the shingles on, the brick facade is complete and the windows are installed. The electrical and plumbing is going in the corridor currently and the heat is installed in most of the classrooms.
"Things are definitely going well and progressing well. We are gaining time on the progress," Kessler said.
Indian Creek Junior High School Principal John Belt then gave board members an update on the seventh- and eighth-graders, including eighth-grader Samatha Byrd, who was named a National Carson Scholar, one of only 402 nationwide.
"We had a successful spring art show at Eastern Gateway Community College, and a final band concert will be held on May 10. The annual band banquet is scheduled for May 14, and the annual awards assembly is scheduled for May 18. Media club held a candy sale that raised $10,000, and eighth-grader Dhatri Kotekal will represent the district in the National Spelling Bee in Washington in May," he said.
In other business, the board:
Approved the following list of certified staff members: One-year contracts to Brad Kessel, Lori Mayher, Abraham Prades, Julie Robinson, Virginia Young, Natalie Ujcich, Sharin Schrock, Bethany Williams and Virginia Pawelcyzk; two-year contracts, Bernadine Edgerly and Michele McCreery; three-year contract Linda Kolbus; and continuing contracts to Bruce Barrett, Brandon Pendleton, Connie Parise, Amy Palma and Kacey Moore.
Approved the resignation request for Debbie Sells from the position of auxiliary textbook clerk at the Jefferson County Christian School, effective at the end of the 2011-12 school year.
Renewed the contract of Transportation Supervisor Brenda Staffilino, effective July 1 through June 30, 2013.
Approved a memorandum of understanding with the Indian Creek Education Association referencing concerning an ICEA negotiated agreement regarding reopener for wages and agreeing no increase in wages for duration of the agreement ending Aug. 31.
Approved a change order for Peterman Plumbing & Heating in the amount of $75,000 for the middle school project at the recommendation of the construction manager.
Announced that the ICHS Scholar's Banquet will be held at 1:30 p.m. May 6 at St. Florian Hall; a reception for retiring employees will be held at 5:30 p.m. May 17 at the board office; the senior awards banquet will be held at 6:30 p.m. May 22 at St. Florian Hall; and graduation will be held at 7 p.m. May 25 at Franciscan University of Steubenville.