2013-11-21 / Local & State

Central Fulton Outlines Teacher Evaluation Tool

Process described as time-consuming
By Chanin Rotz-Mountz

NEWS EDITOR

Central Fulton School Board heard from teachers as well as administrators about the ins and outs of the new state-mandated process currently being used to evaluate teachers in the classroom.

Middle/High School Principal Todd Beatty kicked off the presentation to the board last Tuesday evening regarding his ongoing teacher evaluations that are based in part on walk-throughs and observations. As an example, Beatty noted one teacher evaluation took almost 2-1/2 weeks to complete. Other evaluations have taken over a month to finish. To date he has four completed. The difference from evaluations done previously is the time commitment, he said.

Elementary Principal Alicia Mellott reported she has five evaluations started but none completed. Meanwhile, Billie Jo Beatty indicated she has two evaluations completed from the three she originally started.

Superintendent Dixie Paruch pointed out books were purchased for the teachers to help them understand their role or part in the evaluation process. Training has also been offered, but the computer information input required has been a learn-asyou go process, she said.

The process itself involves the teacher elaborating through a computer log what a lesson will entail on a designated day, what activities it will involve and what a student will learn in the process. As a follow-up, principals pose questions to the teacher. The principal then follows up with the actual in- class observation, which is followed by additional comments and a rating.

Issues that could affect a teacher’s rating for that day could include class behavior and disruptions.

“All a teacher needs is one good day that year ... ,” said board member Dr. Brent Carlson. Tenured teachers are rated once yearly, while untenured teachers are evaluated twice annually. Carlson also compared the situation to a test where you already know the answers.

While it could be compared to as a “dog and pony show,” the superintendent reminded the board that regular walk-throughs are also considered as are team meetings and other events.

Mellott summed up the situation by noting that the evaluation tool requires participants to jump through several more hoops, but it is essentially the same process as before where good feedback or suggestions for improvement are documented in writing. Furthermore, the same methods are still followed to correct teachers with unsatisfactory ratings.

In other personnel-related matters undertaken last Tuesday evening, the board accepted a letter of resignation from Denny Swope as junior high softball head coach. Swope’s resignation was slated to become effective immediately.

Multiple individuals were approved for placement on the 2013- 14 extracurricular salary scale. Among those receiving approval on a 7-1 roll- call vote were:

 band director Greg Strine, $2,175

 middle school Odyssey of the Mind director Amy Conner, $550

 high school Odyssey of the Mind director Amy Conner, $1,345

 high school musical director Erica Sexton, $3,445

 high school musical assistant Nancy Shearer, $3,020

 high school musical accompanist Noreen Mann, $3,020

 high school musical accompanist assistant Carolyn Kerlin, $1,920

 high school musical set designer Susan Cubbage, $1,845

 high school musical costume designer Melissa Horton, $860

 high school musical costume designer Marjorie Sexton, $747.50

 Academic Awards advisor Alex Serrano, $281.67

 Academic Awards advisor Shelly McMullen, $406.67

 Academic Awards advisor Donna Fisher, $406.67

 Yearbook advisor Summer Carson, $2,995

 boys junior high basketball assistant coach Michelle Baker, $1,845

 elementary basketball volunteer Drew Washabaugh

 junior high softball head coach Michelle Eichelberger, $1,945

 boys track and field first assistant coach Todd Grissinger, $2,620

 track and field second assistant coach Jeremy Hollinshead, $1,945

 girls basketball game manager Jessica Curfman, $833

 boys basketball game manager Joshua Strait, $833.

Board member Ryan Richards voted against the placements during the roll- call vote. Fellow member Hollie Garlock was unable to attend the November 12 meeting.

The board announced employee Kristi Bagley was inadvertently granted tenure at the board’s August meeting. The tenure was retracted last week as tenure can only be granted to an employee who has completed three consecutive years in one school district.

Susan Fraker of McConnellsburg was added to the district’s supportive substitute list as an aide. The motion was approved retroactive to September 19.

Budget and finance

Following the recommendation of the administration, the board authorized bidding of the food service management contract for the 2014-15 school year. Metz currently oversees food management matters in the district, and was the only company to previously bid on the matter. It was noted current bidding will include four one-year optional renewal periods.

Transportation

The daily rate for van Route #016 contracted to Chyrel Foster was increased from $145.55 to $149.52 the days she hauls Central Fulton and HHCS students. The rate will be $141.01 on days only Central Fulton students require hauling. The motion begins retroactive to October 14 due to an additional student being placed on the route.

The K4 van Route #030 contracted to Lynda Strait saw a daily rate increase retroactive to October 30 due to the addition of another student. The new daily rate is listed as $80.57

Additional van Route #021, also contracted to Strait, saw an increase in daily rate from $69.95 to $79.15 retroactive to September 3. The increase was again linked to another student being added to the route.

Reports/other

The topic of revenue and expenditures from the musical was again discussed by the board and administration after board member Christopher Hann reported being questioned several times by citizens. Elementary Principal Alicia Mellott explained the breakdown of the two accounts associated with the musical.

The booster account overseen by Hope Moore is an external account from the school and includes donor and patron contributions, which typically cover expenses related to cast Tshirts, a post-musical cast party and helper gifts, Mellott said. Meanwhile all ticket sales go into an account at the elementary school that is handled by Mellott. This account, she said, handles paying for royalty fees, music scores, the sound system and hair and makeup costs. The district covers salaries of musical staff.

Special Education Director Ginger Thompson reported teacher Amy Conner applied for and received a $500 grant through FirstEnergy Corp. STEM Classroom for making electricity kits to be used by second graders.

Outgoing board members Richards and Eric S. Hollinshead received a thank-you for their years of service to the community by the superintendent.

Presentations

FFA students Michala Christy, Sarah Wenschhof, Jordan Offutt, Grace Youngblood, Kassie Stermer, DeAnne Dickerson and Cody Trail, along with their advisor Ann Meyer, appeared before the board to give a brief PowerPoint presentation on their recent trip to the National Convention, which included education trips to Churchill Downs, Schimpff’s Confectionary, Kentucky Horse Park, Busch Gardens and a career expo. Fun activities ranged from laser tag and a dance to game night and a trip to Cabela’s.

The students also distributed their calendar of events for the 2013-14 school year as well as the budget. In connection with their revenue and expenses, Superintendent Paruch noted the state FFA organization no longer charges an individual membership fee to students but now requires districts to pay an affiliate membership based on student enrollment. This new fee passed down to the district totals $765.50. Paruch added the new fee would likely be a topic that would be discussed during budget talks.

At the conclusion of the meeting, an executive session was held to review litigation. No action was taken.

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