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By Mike Scott
Clark County R-1 School board members got some hands-on experience with the technology students are using every day.
Staff member Kay Sprague, Scott Gorrell and Sheri Evans were on hand at the board’s Thursday, January 10 meeting, to present the High School technology report. The meeting was held in the High School library.
“One of the things we’re looking at is the immediate feedback from students,” said principal Jason Harper. “The technology has really branched out and teachers are really embracing it.”
Sprague has been asked to coordinate instructional technology for the high school staff. She demonstrated some of the applications she has found and worked with teachers to implement in their classrooms.
“The biggest hurdle is the extra time of learning how to use the technology,” she told board members.
The board next traveled to Gorrell’s room, who teaches one of his classes as if it were a college online class.
“College freshmen and sophomores have an 81 percent chance of having an online class,” said Harper.
Gorrell, the business teacher at the high school, teaches his Entrepreneurship class online.
“I wanted them to get the experience of online and real world college class,” he said.
“More and more students are taking classes online,” he said. “They need to know how to communicate online.”
The classes require students do online work, as well as discuss questions online with Gorrell and other students.
“I get more feedback from the students because they have to be engaged. Some don’t like it, because they have to work.”
Next, the board received a math lesson from Sherry Evans.
Using the Promethean board and “clicker” response devices, Evans taught a lesson on figuring slope. She could tell when each board member answered the question, and could review their answers immediately.
“Using this technology, teachers don’t need to go home and grade papers to see who not understanding. It’s immediate, and we can work with the student right away, which is so much better,” she said.
The board also discussed the Heating and Ventilation project. Earlier in the week, board members had meet with representatives from Trane about the project.
Last month, the board selected Trane for the HVAC project, which includes replacement of the rooftop units and the high school, addressing heating and cooling zoning in the high school, and the humidity issue in the elementary buildings.
“I think we need a lot more detailed numbers than we’re getting,” expressed board member Craig Hunziker.
“The lack of information we got was striking,” added board member Bill Schutte.
“We don’t know what we can do and can’t do,” added Superintendent Ritchie Kracht. “We’re going to have to demand they break everything down so we can see our choices.
In other business, the board:
-Accepted approximately $129,000 from the Vera and George Heinze Trust. The money is designated by the trust for improvements to the library at Black Hawk Elementary School.
-Discussed student safety, including plans for additional staff training.
-Reported that average daily attendance is up about 60 from last year, and that attendance rates are above 95%.
-Agreed to install baby changing tables in the High restrooms.
-Approved providing free pass to athletic events to retired staff.