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Due to property tax reform in Indiana, the Metropolitan School District of Wayne Township experienced a $14 million to $17 million shortfall and was facing tough financial decisions surrounding its capital projects, debt service and transportation expenditures.

To search for efficiencies in transportation, Superintendent Jeff Butts engaged with Transfinder, specifically looking to leverage their software solutions and expertise in transportation routing, scheduling and communications.

When it was time for North Kansas City School District in Missouri to adopt a mathematics resource for its elementary school students, a select pool of teachers was asked to evaluate several resources. Eventually, Everyday Mathematics from McGraw-Hill Education was selected as the resource. 

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ducators in Bradley County Schools in Cleveland, Tennessee, were faced with some staggering numbers: 48 percent of third-grade students were reading on grade level. That meant five out of every 10 were not.

“We were above the state average of 43 percent,” says Terri Murray, supervisor of Federal Programs/Media Services for the district where 10 of 11 K-5 schools are Title I. “But still, 48 was not good enough for us.”

K12 STEM programs are evolving, incorporating new tools and technologies to better prepare students for rapidly changing college and career environments. Makerspaces, drones, coding and robotics are all part of this next generation of STEM learning that is just beginning to have an impact in districts.

Many states and districts are facing unprecedented teacher shortages. As a result, many have implemented or are expanding existing programs that offer alternative routes to licensure or certification for those seeking to become teachers from another career. 

In the Ventura USD in California, one low-achieving middle school at risk of closure was instead transformed into the De Anza Academy of Technology and the Arts (DATA), a high-achieving magnet school. A significant component in DATA’s dramatic turnaround has been its innovative project-based and collaborative learning environments and makerspaces, which employ technology as a central component. 

Talk about using primary sources to drive students’ content knowledge and build critical-thinking skills.

When students can make sense of words, then they learn, grow and succeed. But getting to this point can be a struggle when students need to overcome reading challenges. Studies have shown that if students learn strategies for unlocking multisyllabic words and academic vocabulary with fluency and confidence, then they will achieve long-term results.

District and school safety plans and compliance measures are a start, but how do you move beyond the basics to accurately assess the preparedness of your staff and students?

This web seminar discussed the most current recommendations for school safety and emergency preparedness that every administrator should understand, as well as practical advice and best practices to implement in any school or district when it comes to safety and security. 

Catherine Finger

Retired Superintendent

During the 2014-15 school year, Pahokee Middle School principal Michael Aronson was asked by his superintendent to visit another school in his Florida district, Acreage Pines Elementary, which was an LSI School for Rigor. Aronson observed implementation sessions and side-by-side coaching. 

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