Clark County R-1 Schools to Promote Parent Communications This Year With Technology
By Mike Scott
Parents of Clark County R-1 school students have more ways than ever to communicate with the school and keep track of their student’s academic progress.
At the Thursday, August 12 CCR-1 School Board meeting, board members got to see a demonstration of the district’s new parent portal. Parents with internet access at home or work can log in to the website and check their student’s grades, attendance, homework assignments, and even see what they had for lunch.
“As they register for classes this year, they are receiving information on the portal,” CCR-1 Superintendent Ritchie Kracht said. Parents will receive their login information by email.
Another new way of keeping in contact with parents is the district’s new automated calling system.
“This tool will allow us contact parents faster in case of an emergency or early dismissal,” Kracht said. “Parents are usually watching if there is snow or ice, or if the weather is really hot, they may expect an early dismissal. But this will help us contact parents faster in case there’s something like last year’s gas leak at the high school which caused the district to cancel classes. And this winter if school is called off, you’ll get a telephone call in the morning,”
The system can also be used to contact specific groups, such as softball players’ families, in the event a game is rained out.
“I think it’s going to be a great thing, but it’s only as good as the phone numbers we have,” Kracht said. He also asked that parents contact the schools if they need to correct any telephone numbers.
Another way to communicate with the school is via email, and Kracht told the teachers at their Monday morning back-to-school meeting that the district was going to emphasize email as a way for parents to communicate with teachers this year.
Also at Thursday’s meeting, the board set prices for food service and activities. This years’ rates remain the same as last year. Breakfasts will cost $1.00, with reduced-price students being charged $0.30. Adults will be $1.65, and extra milk will cost $0.35. Lunches for K-5 students will cost $1.60, while 6-12 grade lunches will cost $1.85. Students eligible for reduced rate will be charged $0.40. Adult lunches will cost $2.20, and extra milk will cost $0.35.
Admission to school events, such as football games, will cost adults $3.00, students $2.00, and senior citizens $1.00. A family can attend for $10.
In other business, the board:
--Approved the adjusted tax rates for the year at $2.75 per $100 dollars of assessed valuation, with an additional
$0.75 for debt service, making the total tax levy $3.50 per $100 dollars of assessed valuation.
--Approved an out-of-district tuition increase of 3.4 percent.
--Approved Homecoming for October 16 vs. Macon, Prom for April 24, and Graduation for May 23.
--Approved the purchase of a 2000 Ford F-150 pickup for $5950 from Kahoka Motors, to replace the district’s maintenance truck.
--Discussed the shortage of qualified substitute bus drivers.
--Discussed possible state budget cuts in the “Career Ladder” program, through which teachers are paid extra for activities such as after school tutoring.
“This could be devastating to schools across the state,” Kracht said. “I can foresee massive retirements, because retirement pay is based on their three highest-paid years.”
--Reviewed the preliminary Adequate Yearly Progress report from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
“Overall we did well,” said Kracht. The district met the graduation rate goal, and most building did well, with problems continuing for students with individualize education plans (IEP’s) For a third year, the IEP subgroup did not meet the “advanced or proficient” standards. “When they take tests, the tests might be read to them, or they may have to choose between two instead of four answers. When they take the state’s test, they get no modification at all,” Kracht said. The only reason more area schools don’t have this problem is that they do not have at least 30 students with IEP’s, which then must be reported as a subgroup.