News from the Office of Curriculum and Instruction

June, 2020

News from the Office of Curriculum & Instruction

The last few months have been a whirlwind of activity for our department.  Our office looks forward to continuing working with our schools to help meet the needs of our staff and students.  

 

Remote Learning

  • March 18 began our remote learning program.  Although we initially thought it would only last several weeks, it ended up lasting several months.  The amount of cooperation we received from parents, students and staff made this experience more positive.  This was clearly not an ideal situation, but there were many positives that occurred which can help us as we plan for the future.

 

  • More than 1,200 individuals completed our remote learning survey.  The information from the survey was very valuable and helped us identify areas to look at moving forward.  Every comment was read on each survey, and survey results were also broken down by building and shared with building administrators.  An overview of the survey results can be found on the Curriculum and Instruction page on the district website (May 2020 Board of Education presentation). www.avonlakecityschools.org 

 

Plans for Next Year

  • The district has begun the process of working on making plans for next school year.  Our goal is to have students physically at school as much as possible.  We are required to follow the guidelines in effect at the time from the Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Department of Education.  We are also looking at options for parents who do not feel comfortable sending their child(ren) physically back to school.  More information will be shared as it becomes available. 

 

Report Cards

  • Report cards will be sent home electronically through Secure Document Delivery during the week of June 8.  Grades K-8 report cards will be released at the beginning of the week, and grades 9-12 report cards at the end of the week.

 

Professional Development

  • This August, our staff will be participating in many different professional development training in the areas of technology, instruction and social emotional learning.  We will be offering a series of sessions for parents in August based on survey feedback.  Stay tuned!  

 

Instructional Coaches

  • Our instructional coaches, Erin Cheney and Heather Hamker, continued to support teacher initiatives during our remote learning period.  They offered workshops for staff on student engagement, and provided support to teachers utilizing the technological tools available for their use.

Instructional Technology 

  • Single sign-on technology is coming this fall to the Avon Lake City Schools.  We have been working with our IT Department to integrate applications and programs used by students into one login.  This will also allow students to have access to their programs at home. 

 

Gifted Education

  • Gifted screening for grades 2 & 5 has been completed.  We will be doing second round screenings in August and September for those students who fell in the “rescreen” range.  More information to come.

 

  • If your child is on a WEP, we were unable to administer assessments which typically contribute to year-end WEP Reviews/Measurable Goals due to the school closures.  Please see your child's report card for end-of-year progress.  

 

  • Cathy Fischer, our longtime gifted coordinator from the Lorain County Educational Service Center, has had some changes in her assigned districts and will no longer be serving Avon Lake.  Cathy has done a great job for the district and will be missed.  Alice Ogonek, a former SOAR teacher in Avon Lake, is our new gifted coordinator.  Welcome Alice!

 

Updated Curriculum

  • Next year, we will be implementing the updated version of EnVision Math for our students in grades K-8.  

 

  • We have also updated curriculum materials and programs for Science across the district.

 

Have a safe and healthy summer!

 

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Dr. Jack Dibee, Curriculum Director

jack.dibee@avonlakecityschools.org

 

Follow me on Twitter @ALCurriculum

 

January, 2020

News from the Office of Curriculum & Instruction

Happy New Year!  There are many new and exciting activities going on in the Avon Lake City Schools!  Our office looks forward to continue working with our schools to help meet the needs of our staff and students. 

 

Curriculum Council

  • The Avon Lake City Schools’ Curriculum Council is currently working on planning bridging meetings for teachers of students in grades 5-12.  The focus of these meetings is to share and collaborate on content, expectations, teaching strategies and materials used for students in each subject area.

 

  • The Curriculum Council has also been focusing on sharing and implementing strategies which focus on student engagement across the district and content areas.

 

Professional Development

  • On Jan. 21-22, several staff members from Learwood and ALHS will be trained in the Check & Connect mentoring program which will be piloted for a number of 8th and 9th grade students this spring.  For over 25 years, Check & Connect (C&C) mentors have helped keep thousands of students on track toward graduation. C&C is the only dropout prevention intervention listed on the What Works Clearinghouse found to have positive effects on staying in school.

 

  • Feb. 14 is our next district-wide professional development event.  ALCS staff members will receive ALICE training (school safety). Training will also occur on an updated elementary math curriculum, as well as bridging meetings between the middle school and high school. 

 

  • Our elementary schools are in the process of participating in training and implementing PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) teams.  PBIS is a framework that guides school teams in the selection, integration and implementation of evidence-based practices for improving academic, social and behavior outcomes for all students.

 

Instructional Coaches

  • Our instructional coaches, Erin Cheney and Heather Hamker, continue to support teacher initiatives in the classroom.  Some of the specific initiatives they have been working on with teachers include writing workshops, technology integration, student engagement strategies, and coaching models.   

 

  • The instructional coaches are also participating in various grade-level and subject-area collaboration meetings to help teachers share and implement best practices.  

 

Instructional Technology 

  • Single sign-on technology is coming this spring to the Avon Lake City Schools!  We have been working with our IT Department to integrate applications and programs used by students into one login.  This will also allow students to have access to their programs at home. 

 

  • Avon Lake High School now has a podcast studio!  The studio is located in The L.A.K.E. and will allow students and staff to record podcasts for both broadcast and for class assignments.  The high school is also in the process of setting up a new Innovation Space in The L.A.K.E.  

 

Advanced Placement (AP) Capstone Program

  • Avon Lake High School will be offering the AP Capstone Program beginning next school year.   AP Capstone™ is a diploma program from the College Board. It’s based on two, year-long AP courses: AP Seminar and AP Research.  Students entering grades 10 and 11 in the Fall of 2020 will be able to sign up for AP Seminar, the first of the two courses.

 

  • Rather than teaching subject-specific content, these courses develop students’ skills in research, analysis, evidence-based arguments, collaboration, writing, and presenting. Students who complete the two-year program can earn one of two different AP Capstone awards, which are valued by colleges across the United States and around the world.

Kindergarten Information Night

  • Do you have a child that will be entering kindergarten in the fall of 2020? If so, join us on Jan. 30, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Performing Arts Center.  This is an evening you do not want to miss! Information will be presented regarding the registration process, neighborhood buildings, full-day vs. half-day programs, kindergarten screening, and start dates. Welcome Class of 2033!

 

 

Board of Education Appreciation Month

  • Gov. Mike DeWine has recognized January 2020 as School Board Recognition Month.  Please join me in thanking our Avon Lake City Schools Board of Education members - Jim Stobe (President), Pamela Ohradzansky (Vice President), Dale Cracas, Ron Jantz and Mike Sherban. We appreciate all they do for our students, staff and community.  

 

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Dr. Jack Dibee, Curriculum Director

jack.dibee@avonlakecityschools.org 

Follow Me on Twitter @ALCurriculum

 

 

October, 2019

 

News from the Office of Curriculum & Instruction

We have had a great start to the school year in the Avon Lake City Schools and our department has many  great activities underway! Our goal is to keep the school community updated on the things happening in our district.  Watch for future updates throughout the year.

 

Curriculum Council

  • The Avon Lake City Schools’ Curriculum Council exists to work on enhancing the curriculum and instructional scope of the district.  Our Curriculum Council works with departments and staff to align curriculum frameworks, resources and assessments. This year, we are focusing on “student engagement” as a theme across all grades.  
  • This school year we have implemented an enhanced online Social Studies curriculum in many grades across the district.  Students have direct access to videos, resources, materials, and other learning tools both at school and at home.  
  • We are in the process of reviewing Science materials for updates in the fall of 2020.

Professional Development

  • Adam Welcome, co-author of the book Kids Deserve It, was our keynote opening day speaker for staff in August.
  • Our teachers are well represented in more than 30 regional, state and national professional organizations!
  • Our department has already approved over 50 teachers attending professional development conferences outside of the district, with many more participating in district sponsored training events.
  • On November 1, our teachers will be attending workshops on the high school campus featuring over 40 different topics, many led by our own staff.  

 

Instructional Coaches

  • Our instructional coaches, Erin Cheney and Heather Hamker, have been supporting teacher initiatives in the classroom.
  • They are facilitating an after school professional learning academy for district teachers and principals to collaborate on student engagement. 

 

Student Assessments

  • Students in grades K-8, as well as some high school students, recently completed the first of three Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) Map benchmark assessments.  Round 2 will begin in December.
  • 3rd grade students will be taking the English Language Arts OST the week of October 21.  
  • 8th and 9th grade students recently took the PSAT.  
  • All 2nd and 5th grade students will be screened for gifted services qualification.  

 

Instructional Technology 

  • The district is working with The Northern Ohio Research and Training Technology Hub (NORT2H) to provide updated resources and technology integrated instructional strategies.  Dave Miller, Senior Director of Technology and Innovation at NORT2H works with our department on a weekly basis.
  • Our AP students and teachers have a new program called AP Online Classroom to help them achieve success in the AP program.

 

Gifted Services

  • Written Education Plans (WEP) for all gifted students are in the process of being developed and will be sent home electronically through Secure Document Delivery.  Parents will have the opportunity to review the WEP and ask any questions or provide input into the plan, if desired.  
  • New this year, our gifted math students in grades 3-5 are participating in the weekly AreteLabs Math Madness competition.  

 

Secure Document Delivery

  • This year we have started Secure Document Delivery of student assessment results through the use of the designated parent/guardian emails in PowerSchool. Future SDD deliveries include:
  • Gifted WEP’s     October 30
  • K-8 Report Cards  November 4
  • December MAP Scores  January 3

 

If you ever have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to contact me!

Dr. Jack Dibee, Curriculum Director

jack.dibee@avonlakecityschools.org 

Follow Me on Twitter @ALCurriculum