Trisha Schock, finance director at the Educational Service District is filling in for Scott Renick, the District’s finance director while he recovers from COVID-19 and reported that the Lake Chelan School District is in a great financial situation.
“There are no concerns about the District’s financial stability,” she said. Next year, there are potential cuts coming, but she didn’t expect any financial issues. The district is 104% over last year. Accounts payable are down from $282,870.00 to $262,255.00
Lynda Foster asked what the feeling is around the area schools regarding enrollment?
Schock stated that everyone is concerned if the District’s don’t get back to traditional schooling. “They are all really looking forward to having kids back in school.”
School Superintendent Barry DePaoli
Barry reported on the ongoing discussions on re-opening schools. There are teachers, parents and students sitting in on some of this dialogue. On Friday, there will be a meeting on the “Teaching and Learning Side.”
“Safety is huge,” stated Barry. “This has been draining on our teachers as well as our students.”
The big concern is where COVID-19 will be in the Fall. Steady… Spiking… or Declining. “A huge spike is a concern,” said Barry. The District is receiving more and more emails from parents and the general public about their concerns about re-opening.
The District is continuing to have issues with the Internet availability to all students. The other issue is that Chrome Books are having a problem with Zoom connectivity.
It was also stated that students don’t like to be isolated and are not good at independent learning. “If we have to start remotely (in the fall) how do we do that engagement (with students).” Barry is trying to make sure with all the planning that when the District re-opens in the fall, the District is organized.
MOE Principle Erin Morin stated that across the state, Districts are seeing about 30 percent engagement with students, but Chelan has 60 percent engagement. “As people go back to work, we may see that engagement go down,” she said.
The Elementary is at 60 percent and the teachers have become very creative at staying engaged including driving by students homes. The District is sending out Parent Input for Placement form asking such questions as:
1.What kind of learning environment does your child work best in?
2. Does your child have special needs that we need to be aware of?
DePaoli has been involved with a work group that are looking at some re-opening strategies from other countries. “There is some good information. We need to look at this as a real challenge for this District and still meet the needs for our kids.”
Middle School Principal Mr Wood said that engagement at the middle school is a little different. “Sometimes we have 10 to 15 students on-line.” He said students are gravitating toward other than project related work like the No Red Ink grammar software.
He also stated that the staff is really looking forward to next year. They are missing the interaction with the kids. the staff is neutral on on-line learning with 25 percent struggling at on-line teaching.
Wood reported that he is working on a parking lot moving up ceremony for both the fifth grade and eighth grade students. It has not been approved yet. There is apparently a lot of apprehension amongst the fifth graders about moving up.
Wood, Rob Rainville and Erin have been video taping to show students moving up what school looks like as an introduction to both the staff and school setting.
The board approved the hiring of Nicholas Longmire as the new head Girls Basketball Coach and the hiring of Randy Gleasman as the Assistant Wrestling Coach. Both said they were excited. Pat Chism has been hired as the new head Wrestling Coach and he likes the idea of having Gleasman as his assistant.
High School graduation will be a drive in ceremony following the CDHD guidelines
The District board approved the renewal of the WIAA contract.