Sunday, February 25, 2018

Berlin School Board Report 

August 31, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Continued From Last Week
By Doug La Rocque
Besides the issues reported in last week’s edition of The Eastwick Press the Board also approved the continuation of the school district’s participation in the 2017-2018 Breakfast and Lunch programs, as well as paid release time for Volunteer Emergency Responders.  What to do with a large amount of surplus equipment was also discussed.  It was decided to put the list on the web to see if anyone might be interested. If not, it will be sent to electronic recycling.
In his report District Superintendent Dr. Stephen Young said during the second day of the year Superintendent’s Conference Days, everyone will be involved in a Poverty Simulation Exercise.  Dr. Young said it is run by an outside organization that assigns roles to the participants. All go through different scenarios about poverty in the region and the school district. They then are charged with working out solutions to those issues.  He said the program is new to the area, with only a handful of schools having taken part in the program to date. one of those was the New Lebanon School District.  Young said it should be very enlightening and interesting. The program usually costs districts about $3,500 to put on, but because Berlin got in early enough, the cost is being waived.  Dr. Young also talked about the upgrades that have been made to the High School Gymnasium, in particular the flooring and lighting.
Another important issue brought forth by Board member Jeff Paine is chronic absenteeism. He is the District’s legislative liaison, and told other members it is something the New York State Education Department is going to be watching very closely this year.  A problem he has with their measuring stick however, is that it does not take into consideration legitimate absences, such as illness, family problems and the like.  He concedes however that Berlin does have a problem with chronic absenteeism that needs to be addressed with early intervention programs, noting these students are 90 percent less likely to graduate than those who attend class on a regular basis.
The Board next meets on September 19 at 7:15 pm.


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