Happy Fall Maple Valley!
As we progress through this interesting school year, we are getting on track to strategically determine how we will be allocating our ESSER III funds to support both short and long-term investments into our students learning, welfare, and the entire school system.
Up next for us is focusing on Curricular review and the long process of new curriculum selection. Curriculum is an interesting and complex topic. As we move forward there will be a great amount of work dedicated to this process. We begin by assessing our student needs based upon data review for where we are excelling and where we need to improve to advance our student's skills. Next, we identify our most immediate needs for areas of the curriculum: English, Math, Science, Social Studies, Health, and Student Welfare are topics we will be examining. Once we finalize which areas need attention first, we begin to look at systems of Curriculum which have been aligned to the Subject Standards given to us by the state of Michigan. Then we begin to review what is available through the lens of content, affordability, sustainability (how long will the curriculum be supported and available from the company), what tools are available to us to help instruct the curriculum (text, hybrid, online resources), then we consider the type of needs for staff development to engage with the curriculum. Once we have selected a few potential programs of study, we put them before committees comprised of teachers, parents, ERESA consultants, and administrators to decide which program is the best fit for us locally. Then the curriculum is priced out and presented to our School Board for review and adoption.
This is a massive financial undertaking and a perfect time to do this is now with the influx of federal dollars that will be distributed to us over the next few years. We are not likely to have opportunities such as this again and we want to get this right. Input from the community will be really important as we move forward. If you are interested in partnering with us as community members on review committees, I encourage you to begin educating yourself on the Michigan Academic Standards which can be found at this link or by doing a Google search for Michigan Academic Standards. Many standards have been revised in the past few years particularly in Social Studies and Science. The more familiar you can become with the standards and tools for evaluating instructional materials, the better prepared you will be to contribute to the conversation of selecting our new curriculums as we move forward. I also encourage you to learn more about 21st Century Skills as that has a major impact on curricular design going forward. If you are interested in joining our curriculum committees later this year, please contact your building administrators Mr. Joel Smith or Mr. Trent Harvey to indicate your interest. We welcome our community in this effort.
I also want to wrap up this week with an invitation to become certified substitute teachers and paraprofessional substitutes. We continue to be desperately short of this critical human resource to keep our students at the center of everything we do.
Enjoy the colors of fall in the Valley!