EVANSVILLE, Ind. — Many attendees were left standing at the school board meeting Monday, as Evansville Vanderburgh School Corp. teachers largely filled the seats.
Evansville Teachers Association President Michael Rust approached the podium during the public comment period and addressed the school board while a crowd of teachers wearing red ETA shirts backed him up.
Rust, who used only one third of the three-minute speaking limit, said the EVSC teachers were in attendance to acknowledge the district’s current salary negotiations.
“These teachers are here in support of the Evansville Teachers Association’s bargaining team and their work towards a favorable agreement in the current negotiations,” Rust said. “It is our desire to work together until that end.”
Following Rust’s comments, the gathering of educators applauded, and the meeting was adjourned as scheduled. Here’s what else you missed during Monday’s school board meeting.
Here are five other things you missed:
1. EVSC approved the purchase of Promethean panels — advanced, interactive display screens — for middle school classrooms
This past summer, the Office of Technology installed Promethean panels in high schools across the district. The school board voted during Monday’s school board meeting to begin the same process in EVSC middle schools.
The approved proposal solidified the installment of Promethean panels and active sound technology in EVSC middle schools through The Interlocal Purchasing System (TIPS). The TIPS program is a purchasing tool used by school districts and government agencies. TIPS was used to purchase similar boards in EVSC high schools last year.
Certified installation of the Promethean equipment and removal of old equipment will be contracted with Empower Learning. By the end of the semester, the Office of Technology will begin working with Empower Technology to install two Promethean panels in each middle school.
The pilot installation will include the removal of current “smart boards” and a system to work with teachers interested in being the first to use the new interactive technology. The total cost for the Promethean panel installation is estimated at $1.8 million.
“We are using the State Technology Advancement Account (STAA) funds that have already been approved and received to begin the project. Future Common School Fund loans will be used to complete the installations,” stated school board documents.
The installation of the Promethean panels will be in all EVSC middle schools by summer 2020.
2. Grant proposed to help support foundational skills in grades 1 and 2
The administration approved the Indiana Early Literacy Intervention grant to fund the establishment of “foundational skills” in first and second grades. The $77,000-plus grant will be used to supply academic materials and train EVSC teachers for the betterment of students’ academic performance.
The grant will ensure students are learning basic English and math skills and continue to grow as they move up to other grades.
3. The administration approved the revised consultant agreement for Special Education Life Skills Services
Board President Karen Ragland and the rest of the school board approved the consultant program for Special Education Life Skills Services. The revised agreement will provide student and classroom-focused consultation for life skills classrooms across the district.
The consultant program will also coach incoming teachers in efforts to build a foundation for strong academics, behavior and classroom support.
4. The 2020-2021 academic calendar is set for public release Tuesday
The EVSC school board approved the proposed 180-day academic calendar. Similar to last year’s schedule, there will be 90 instructional days in the first and second semester.
EVSC spokesman Jason Woebkenberg said the district intends on placing the upcoming academic calendar on school websites and social media Tuesday to spread awareness to EVSC students, teachers and parents.
5. EVSC has agreed to partner with company to ensure safe elevators
Oracle Elevator Company, an elevator installation and maintenance organization, will provide inspection and safety testing services to all EVSC elevators. The company will also help provide maintenance and emergency services upon request.