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Washington, D.C., trip rescheduled

Officials review report card results

Riverside Local Schools officials reviewed district report card results at Tuesday’s evening board of education meeting, and also reported on the recently rescheduled eighth-grade trip to Washington, D.C.

As previously reported, Hurricane Sandy’s wake washed out the school’s trip to the nation’s capital that was scheduled for several weeks ago. However, the trip for current Riverside eighth-graders has been rescheduled for June 2-7 with K&K Tours.

“K&K Tours has been great to work with, and we’re thrilled that we were able to reschedule the trip,” Superintendent Scott Mann said. “It’s such a memorable and important time for our students.”

In addition, members approved the Washington, D.C., trip for next year’s eighth-graders for Nov. 3-8, 2013.  

As for the district report card results, Riverside once again is rated “effective” and narrowly missed attaining an “excellent” rating, meeting 22 out of 26 state standards. This data shows an increase from the 21 out of 26 indicators met on last year’s report.

Elementary School Principal Mason Bryan reported that the only indicators not met at the elementary level were third-grade and fifth-grade math.

“This is a puzzle that we continue to work on,” Mr. Bryan said. “Math will continue to be a target area for us, but we’ll also continue to work on our reading, as reading is crucial on these tests even when trying to solve some of the math problems.”

The principal also noted the importance of improving students’ reading skills because of the recent implementation of the Third-Grade Reading Guarantee. Beginning next school, this measure will require districts to retain third-grade students if their reading scores are not proficient.

In preparation for this new requirement, Riverside Schools is already working with third-grade students who need targeted reading intervention, Mr. Bryan said.

For other report cards scores, Superintendent Mann reported that the district met its seventh-grade and eighth-grade math indicators for the first time. The only indicator missed in grades 6-8 was eighth-grade science.  

In addition, the district met its value-added measure that looks at student growth from year to year, and also improved its performance index score, which now stands at 96 out of a possible 120.

In other discussion items, Superintendent Mann reported on strategic goals that he wants to implement for the district. The goals include providing continuing academic success for every student, recruiting and supporting highly effective staff, engaging family and community partners and valuing a positive self-renewing culture.

To support the final goal, the superintendent noted that the district is hosting an assembly with motivational speaker Joel Penton, a former Ohio State University football player, at 9 a.m. Dec. 11.

Also to work toward the objective of supporting effective personnel, Riverside has started building leadership teams to encourage teacher input in administrative decisions and also has started a new teacher mentor program for new staff members, Mr. Mann said.

Cindy Garrett, technology coordinator, reported that adding students to the school’s new wireless network has gone well. She said a number of pupils have taken their laptops and other devices to school to be integrated into the system.

She also noted that a total of 20 new laptops have been purchased for the district through a federal Rural and Low Income Grant.

Alan Smith, coach for the Little Pirates PeeWee football team, presented the board with a trophy for the school trophy case from his team’s win of the Junior Buckeye League Scarlet Conference Championship. A total of 17 Riverside students in grades 1-4 are members of the team.

In other action, the board:

• accepted the resignation of Holly Dalton, bus driver, effective Nov. 13;

• extended supplemental contracts to Lisa Snow, junior high girls basketball coverage; and Rick Reed and Doug Walter, volunteer wrestling coaches who will work with two Riverside wrestlers through a partnership with the Bellefontaine High School wrestling program;

• approved the Class of 2018 to take an eighth-grade class trip to Washington, D.C., Nov. 3-8, 2013;

• approved Timothy McGill and Deanna McIntosh to serve as Thursday/Saturday school monitors at the rate of $15 per hour;

• approved the supplemental appropriations increase for a $19,302 Title I grant, and a $2,124.73 Rural and Low Income Grant; and

• approved the donation of a piano valued at $800 from Mr. and Mrs. Scott Mann.

The next regular rescheduled meeting is 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 18.

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