School board reviews curriculum changes

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 10/20/99.

Ten department chairs reviewed programs regarding their yearly curriculum plans at the Tuesday night meeting of the Paynesville Area School Board.

The high school science department requested that summer IPS be eliminated. Tammy Botton, high school science department chair, said she didn't feel the ninth grade students were progressing smoothly into chemistry and physics from IPS.

"If science were added into the curriculum, some electives would lose numbers. Could we teach something else? That depends on if we can get a teacher to teach in the summer months," John Janotta, high school principal, added.

"If a course is needed to be offered during the summer months, it was suggested substituting Spanish, German, Algebra or another class for the current IPS offering," Botton said.

This past summer there were between 50 and 60 students enrolled in IPS which was taught by Jay Thompson and Brad Bauer.

Janotta informed the board that IPS is a five-week equivalent of a 36-week science course. The students meet five hours per day.

Beth Realdsen, health department chairperson, stressed the need for a full-time nurses aide in the middle school. "We are seeing more and more kids with serious needs," she said. "Nandra Looman only works half days. Presently, there is no nurses aide and in the high school."

Realdsen added she hasn't been able to complete routine screenings at the 10th grade level because of lack of time.

"Last week I was helping a child in the elementary school when I received a call for help from the middle school," Realdsen said. "I couldn't be in two places at one time."

Realdsen told the board that she is planning an inservice for staff members on emergency first aid and CPR to help out when she is not available.

The board said they would explore the lack of health care coverage and see where they could come up with more money to support another full-time health aide.

Jim Hahn, vocational department chairperson, informed the board the various vocational areas were integrating newly purchased equipment into their programs while improving teaching methods.

"The business department purchased 19 new computers and all new textbooks.," he added.

The other seven department chairs explained where they were in the review cycle and that they were working on the graduation standards.

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