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Education briefs

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By Stevie Lowery

(The following education briefs were gathered during the Marion County Board of Education’s meeting on Thursday, Oct. 12.)

Superintendent’s report
Marion County Superintendent Taylora Schlosser reported the following information during her monthly superintendent’s report.
• Marion County Public Schools was selected by the National School Board Association to present at the national conference on their work with strategic planning.
• Jefferson County Public Schools have contacted MCPS wanting more information about the Dream Bus.
• Measured Academic Progress (MAP) student progress reports have been printed and will be ready to hand out at family nights. Those family nights/parent teacher conferences are scheduled for the following:
• Calvary Elementary: Oct. 26
• Glasscock Elementary: Oct. 30
• Lebanon Elementary: Oct. 28
• West Marion Elementary: Oct. 24
• Marion County Middle: Oct. 26
• Marion County Knight Academy: Oct. 23
• Division of Student Success requested that Menifee County Schools visit Calvary Elementary on Nov. 8 to learn more about Calvary’s Response to Intervention (RTI) work with students.
• Shannon Cogan, a news anchor for WAVE 3 News in Louisville, recently did an interview and telecast about MCPS’s partnership with the Marion County Public Library, Friends of the Library and the Dolly Parton Imagination Library. As of last count, there are 548 children in Marion County receiving a new book every month in their home, and 44 children have graduated the program.

Recognition of retirement
Superintendent Schlosser recognized Todd Farmer and his upcoming retirement, effective Nov. 1. Farmer has worked in the field of education for more than 30 years. He started in MCPS as the assistant principal at Lebanon Middle School in 2007 and became the principal at LMS in 2008. In 2013, Farmer accepted the position of director of federal programs.

State assessment results
The school board reviewed assessment data for the 2016-17 school year, which was released this month by the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE). Kentucky is in the process of phasing out its old accountability system, and replacing it with a new system created under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and Kentucky Senate Bill 1. The new system is expected to be in place by the 2018-19 school year. As a result of the transition, this year’s release of assessment data doesn’t include overall accountability scores, classifications or rankings for schools and districts.
Board Vice Chairman Kaelin Reed said he was disappointed that the district wasn’t allowed to celebrate the schools like they have in the past. He commented that when he and Butch Cecil were elected to the school board, A.C. Glasscock Elementary School was historically low. But, the school’s staff and students have been working extremely hard for years now to make progress, and the recent assessment data shows that the hard work is paying off, Reed said.
Glasscock is above the state average in every content area. Reed and Board Member Brad Cox both agreed they wish the school board could throw a parade in Glasscock’s honor.
“We can’t have celebrations like we have in the past… but if we could, we would have blown it out,” Reed said.
Board Member Carrie Truitt said she was very proud to be the parent of a GES Bulldog.

Mandated civics test
The school board approved the mandated civics test, which is the result of Senate Bill 159. The legislation was approved this year by the Kentucky General Assembly. The law reads that beginning in July of 2018, a student must pass a civics test composed of 100 questions in order to graduate from a public high school with a regular diploma. All local boards of education are required to prepare or approve an exam that must be composed of questions from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services test. Students are required to score 60 percent or higher and can retake the exam as many times as deemed necessary to pass the test. All Marion County High School sophomores and juniors will take this exam in December.

In other matters, board members:
• Nominated Reed and Truitt to serve as the two district representatives on the Marion County Education Foundation Board of Directors.
• Voted to purchase three new school buses.
• Approved a bid from Pomeroy for video surveillance cameras.
• Approved the Inter-Scholastic Athletics and Extra-Curricular Activities Funding Agreement with the Marion County Fiscal Court for $10,000.

Acknowledgement of personnel actions
Certified
• Acknowledgement of Todd Farmer’s retirement as director of federal programs for Marion County Public Schools, effective Nov. 1.
• Acknowledgement of Linda Taylor’s retirement as a preschool instructor at West Marion Elementary, effective Nov. 1.
• Acknowledgement of Greg Taylor’s retirement as an instructional coach, effective Nov. 1.
• Appointment of Chad Spalding as a homebound instructor for a student at Marion County High School.
• Appointment of Tara Tatum as a homebound instructor for a student at Marion County High School.
• Appointment of Holly Cox as a homebound instructor for a student at Marion County High School.
• Appointment of Sandra Gribbins as a homebound instructor for a student at Marion County Middle School.
• Acceptance of Frederick Daniel Marcum’s resignation as an ECE instructor at Lebanon Elementary School.
• Appointment of Rachael Trent as guidance counselor at Marion County High School.
• Appointment of Joshua Thompson as an emergency certified substitute teacher district wide.
• Appointment of Marcus Cody Thomas as an emergency certified substitute teacher district wide, effective Oct. 10.
• Appointment of Mitzi Reynolds as a certified daytime waiver extended school service instructor.
• Appointment of Lucinda Williams as a certified daytime waiver extended school service instructor.
• Appointment of Menla Marlowe as a certified daytime waiver extended school service instructor.
• Appointment of Cody Farmer as a certified extended school service instructor.
• Appointment of Matthew Thomas as a certified extended school service instructor.

Classified
• Appointment of Allison Ryan as a substitute instructional assistant district wide.
• Appointment of Melinda Hamilton as a substitute instructional assistant district wide.
• Appointment of Jessica Hayden as a substitute instructional assistant district wide.
• Appointment of Elyssa Holt as a substitute instructional assistant for Marion County Public Schools.
• Appointment of Faith Miles as a substitute instructional assistant district wide.
• Acceptance of Matthew Turner’s resignation as a district instructional assistant.
• Acceptance of Matthew Turner’s resignation as freshmen basketball coach at Marion County High School.
• Acceptance of Ruby Veatch’s resignation as an instructional assistant at Glasscock Elementary School.
• Appointment of Laura Murphy as a part-time instructional assistant at Glasscock Elementary School.
• Appointment of Lara Skaggs as a part-time instructional assistant at Calvary Elementary School.
• Appointment of Theresa Calhoun as an instructional assistant at Marion County Knight Academy.
• Appointment of Bradley Mattingly as custodian at Marion County High School.
• Appointment of Jessica Lyvers as part-time instructional assistant.
• Appointment of Emily Helms as FRYSC student worker at Glasscock Elementary and Calvary Elementary.
• Appointment of Lee Ann Childers as FRYSC student worker at Glasscock Elementary and Calvary Elementary.