The Times - Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

By Michele Smith
The Times 

Dayton School Board Addresses Strategic Priorities

Board also discussed fitness program, financial audit, sports combine, at last weeks meeting


DAYTON—Dayton school superintendent Doug Johnson gave a report at last week’s school board meeting about the Dayton School District’s community visioning strategic priorities. He said that all staff will meet in the auditorium after school on May 16 to discuss the strategic priorities, after which public meetings about the top three strategic priorities will be scheduled.

Johnson also reported that the district is supporting a book study for all staff and school board members. Based on Carol Dweck’s book, Mindset, the study focuses on learning about fixed mindset vs. growth mindset. A book study team has been meeting in Spokane, to practice and learn strategies of problem solving.

A fitness program for fourth and fifth graders is in the planning stages, Johnson said. The program uses a device similar to a Fitbit to track all physical movement. Students will be able to log in at home or on an IPad at school. Students will also benefit from using math and from graphing. Johnson said the fitness program will target fourth graders, because it is in fourth grade that students either choose to be physically active or not.

The fitness program is sponsored by St. Mary’s Providence Hospital, which will provide the devices and encouragement. Supervising the program will be a joint effort between classroom and PE teachers.

Johnson said he is still in talks with the engineering firm Anderson-Perry & Associates about two asphalt projects, which are planned for the bus loading zone and the elementary playground. Cost estimates came in higher than anticipated, and Johnson said he is looking for ways to reduce the cost.

The annual financial audit of the district has been completed and can be viewed on the state auditor’s website.

Johnson said the Waitsburg School District and the DSD had public meetings last week to assess the sports combine. High School Principal Paul Shaber added,” The overwhelming response from students is, it’s going fine.”

Elementary school Principal Pam Lindsley told the board that there was a positive turn out by parents for spring conferences. Teachers met with parents of students they are concerned about being ready for the next grade level, she said.

Also, the third graders did well on the ELA portion of the Smarter Balanced Assessment. Seventy percent of the students were proficient, with most scoring a Level 4 on the tests, and this has motivated them to do well on the upcoming math portion, said Lindsley

High school students are also taking the math portion. Juniors have to take the test, but sophomores who are currently taking Algebra II are taking it as well, Lindsley added.

Lindsley has met with the After School Program Coordinator Monica Mitchelle about partnering with her to provide academic support after school, as well as “the fun stuff” in the After School Program.

“She had some great ideas for getting kids involved, and I look forward to working with her,” said Lindsley.

The math team has been meeting with publishers of two math instruction resources, and will meet with the publishers of a third in the next week or so, said Lindsley.

Superintendent Johnson and the school board have scheduled a retreat to discuss strategic priorities and other issues on June 21, just prior to the regular 6 p.m. school board meeting.


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