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Community Conversation, Round 2

January 22, 2009

Last night I was at the Saline District Library for my second “Community Conversation” event of January.  Nine community members shared their thoughts, concerns, and asked questions.  As with the other sessions I have hosted, I feel that I learn a great deal about the issues facing families related to raising children in Saline.

The issues discussed at this session included:

•    Encouraging girls in the areas of math & science
•    Considering the development of boys and how they learn
•    The curriculum review process
•    Indoor recess issues
•    Cursive vs. keyboarding
•    Testing – how much is too much?

We spent additional time considering a few other issues:

Homework
There was an expressed concern that there is “too much” homework being assigned.  Those of you who read this blog regularly know that is an issue that I have touched on in the past.  I plan to gather additional information about this issue.

Class Size
We discussed the size of our classes, particularly at the K-2 level.  I was able to clarify the process we use to add sections and committed to look at other possible supports for large classrooms.  As we begin the process to build sections for 2009-2010, this will be valuable feedback for me to share with the administrative team.

Technology
We shared thoughts related to the use of technology by our students.  It was an interesting discussion that was highlighted by the promise of what technology holds related to accessing information and learning opportunities – but also the dilemma parents (and educators) face as students become tech savvy and are able to access inappropriate content or face cyber-bullying, etc.  One request was to hold an informational session on strategies that parents can use to manage this issue.  I will be reviewing options and scheduling a session in the next several months.

I would like to thank those who attended for their willingness to praise the district where they think we are excelling and to asking questions where they have concerns.  I plan to schedule future dates later this spring for additional dialogue.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Deb permalink
    January 22, 2009 10:09 pm

    Sounds like a great meeting. I am also interested in many of these issues.
    I have just recently become aware of the “cursive” vs keyboard issue and it has really got me thinking. I am a HUGE technology fan but, change is always a little “scary”. So, I still want to weigh advantages/disadvantages.
    It is interesting to think about the amount of class time that is used for cursive. But, the other side of the coin is …. then ideally we would want a “keyboard” (laptop) for every student in every classroom.
    That is a challenge.
    Interesting.

  2. Heidi permalink
    January 23, 2009 3:00 pm

    I am pleased and encouraged by Scot’s willingness to participate in this type of dialouge with the community. I am looking forward to hearing further about these issues and potential resolutions to identified areas of concern. I would encourage SAS families to take advantage of these opportunities to meet with Scot. It illustrates the true partnership of parents, administration and the community at large that exists within our school district.

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