Alder youngsters demonstrate math program

Messenger photo by Sandi Latimer
Kindergarten student Adelyn Kauffman shows Shannon Foust, Jonathan Alder school board president, how the Spatial-Temporal Math program works on her iPad works. The demonstration was part of the school board meeting held March 13 at Monroe Elementary.

(Posted March 15, 2017)

By Sandi Latimer, Staff Writer

The Jonathan Alder school board took its monthly meeting on the road March 13 to Monroe Elementary.

Board members were greeted by photos of classes from when the building served as a high school more than a half-century before. That display segued into artwork by today’s students.

Principal Lee Ann Childers also pointed out a glass-enclosed, lighted curio cabinet that held the gardening project of students in the 21st Century program.

During the meeting, seven kindergarten and first-grade students, with iPads in hand, marched up to the table where board members, Superintendent Gary Chapman and Treasurer Aaron Johnson were sitting to show them how they do math using the Spatial-Temporal Math program.

First-grader Phoebe Trimble gives Jonathan Alder school board member Tom Bichsel a lesson in math on an iPad while first-grader Drew King shows board member Christine Blacka how the Spatial-Temporal Math program works.

Zane Cook became quite animated and jumped up and down as he showed board member Steve Votaw how to work the program.

Other students participating in the demonstration were kindergarten students Logan Donaldson, Adelyn Kauffman and Addison Yutzy, and first-graders Phoebe Trimble, Drew King and Yareli Montoya-Mora. Parents stood behind the board members to get a look at what their children are learning.

During the business meeting, Chapman read a letter from the state auditor’s office, recognizing the district for excellence in financial reporting for 2016.

Misty Swanger, assistant superintendent, presented a job description for a literacy coach the district hopes to hire next year.

“We haven’t had one for about four years,” she said. “We shuffled some funding around to pay for this position.”

Board members also approved personnel changes that included the resignations of Tom Vargo and Cris Janda as junior high school track coaches, being replaced by Alex Irwin. Kelly Hicks, principal at Plain City Elementary, was granted a one-year contract in a retire/rehire position. Clint Hayes and Brett Longberry received three-year contracts as junior high school principal and director of technology, respectively.

The board also approved a revision of the board policy that requires volunteers and off-site field trip chaperones to have background checks. Hicks said parents who are police and fire fighters have already gone through such checks for their jobs and don’t have to go through them again.

“For some of my parents, it’s the only way they can take their kids to COSI (the Center of Science and Industry) in Columbus,” she said.

The board’s next meeting is April 10 at the high school.

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