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Getting Involved

Board Meeting Summary, Jan. 7, 2020

Note: Recordings and documents for agenda items can be accessed via BoardDocs by clicking on the corresponding agenda items.

Legislative Update

Public education will be a central focus of the 2020 General Session of the Utah Legislature, which convenes on Monday, Jan. 27. The tax-restructuring obligation faced by lawmakers will have implications for how schools are funded. Also, 113 education-related bills have been filed, so far, according to Canyons’ External Relations Director Charles Evans. That compares to about 80 education-related bills filed by this time last year. The External Relations team makes it easy to keep tabs on the bills of interest to Canyons District’s employees, patrons and taxpayers. Anyone interested in keeping informed of the progress of these pieces of legislation can sign up to receive daily updates through CSD’s Legislative RSS Feed.

Standards-Based Grading Online Gradebook

The Board of Education continued a discussion on the proposed adoption of the software MasteryConnect to support an online elementary-school gradebook for standards-based grading practices and guidelines. Instructional Supports Department Director Dr. Amber Roderick-Landward told the Board that the program also could be used in secondary schools as an assessment tracker and Professional Learning Community tool. During the presentation, Dr. Roderick-Landward said the adoption of MasteryConnect could facilitate a common, consistent gradebook for standards-based grading, which focuses on a student’s academic-skill proficiency. The system also could support data-based decision-making across the District. In addition, she reviewed feedback from teachers and principals who participated in a pilot, input from other school districts using MasteryConnect, a proposed professional development process for CSD educators, and a possible information campaign for parents. The cost of MasteryConnect is $3.25 per student, with a $1 extra charge for a GradeCam, which allows a teacher’s device to instantly scan and grade multiple-choice, fill-in, or short answer assessments.  The Instructional Supports Department proposes to begin a subscription for all elementary students for a full implementation in 2020-2021, and in secondary schools, purchase limited subscriptions for select content areas to assess scalability from 2020 to 2022 and purchase and implement to scale 2022 to 2023. The Board will continue to review the proposal. 

DLI Committee Report

A committee tasked with studying the sustainability of dual-language immersion programs in Canyons District unveiled several recommendations. The group, made up of teachers, administrators, principals, teacher specialists, and members of the Board of Education, for a year reviewed DLI application, enrollment, and achievement trends.  They also attempted to ascertain the perception of Canyons District DLI programs at the state level. Surveys of administrators and parents were done to gauge interest in additional offerings, the community perception of the quality of CSD DLI programs, and hopes for the programs, among other things. Immediate proposed strategies for improvement include more communication internally and externally about DLI issues, the creation of parent advisory committees per global language offered, and a refinement of DLI teacher supports. Dr. Roderick-Landward, which led the task force, also said the group recommends increasing the Spanish-English DLI program by two co-horts at the elementary level, a consolidation of middle school DLI programs at Crescent View and Union middle schools, and a consolidation of high school DLI classes and dual-enrollment for participating high school students. Jordan High is proposed as the site for Mandarin Chinese and French DLI classes and Hillcrest as the site of Spanish-English classes, according to the recommendations.  The Board asked for additional information. The recommendation also will be reviewed by the Long-Range Planning Committee.

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Lucie Chamberlain

Alta View Elementary

If a movie about super teachers were ever made, Lucie Chamberlain would be a prime candidate for a leading role. Fortunately for her kindergarten students at Alta View Elementary, she already thrives in a supporting role for them. Parents thank her for being a “super teacher.” She is also described as an “amazing colleague.” Whether students need help in the classroom or from home while sick, Lucie goes above and beyond to help them learn, overcome fears, and feel important and cared for. Lucie is the reason a number of kids went from hating school to loving it, according to parents. The way she exudes patience, sweetness, positive energy, and love for her students with special needs melts is appreciated and admired. One parent noted: “Both my kids wish she could be their teacher forever.” Another added:  “She treats every student like their learning and their feelings are her priority.” Super teacher, indeed!

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