Groveport Madison’s School Improvement plan enhanced


By Rick Palsgrove
Southeast Editor

The Groveport Madison Board of Education voted to appropriate approximately $1 million to expand the district’s School Improvement Program and Services plan.

The program, which is entering its second year, is part of an approximately $7 million, five year student achievement plan to address the academic needs of students at all grade levels.

“Financially, we can do this,” said Groveport Madison Treasurer John Walsh. “A lot of what’s being added is people and people are your biggest cost.”

Items approved to be implemented in 2016-17 include:

•adding two more gifted intervention specialists to the gifted program at a cost of $164,000;
•expanding tutoring in grades 3-9 at a cost of $248,506;
•increasing special education staffing  per enrollment including a behavioral specialist at a cost of $78,040;
•adding a high school/middle school counselor to coordinate social services and counseling curriculum alignment district wide at a cost of $94,320;
•technology upgrades at a cost of $234,000, which will pay for training and purchasing/licensure expenses over the next three years; and
•increasing student support services to help students receive more educational and counseling support outside of school to better get on track in the classroom at a cost of $182,000.

“It is our intentions that the choices made will help students from all buildings continue to move forward and make sustainable progress,” said Groveport Madison Superintendent Bruce Hoover.

Not included in the improvements was the proposed creation of a public preschool in the district, which had an estimated cost of $1.8 million.

According to Groveport Madison Schools spokesman Jeff Warner, board members are interested in creating a public preschool, but not at this time because there is not enough funding for it, nor are the district’s existing facilities able to handle a preschool.

“The cost was too high,” said Warner. “If the district created a preschool at this time there wouldn’t have been the money available to do the other enhancements to the School Improvement Program and Services plan. Also, we don’t have the facilities for it as our buildings are already overcrowded.”

The proposed preschool would have required: the hiring of six teachers and a preschool coordinator; financing 12 bus routes to bring the kids to and from preschool; and purchasing or leasing modular classrooms possibly to be set up at each of the district’s elementary schools to house the preschool program. The public preschool would have offered half day options with morning and afternoon sessions.

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  1. To Editor of the Southeast Messenger,

    This is a response to the “Construction progressing on New GM High School” article published on page 11 of the April 17, 2016 issue.

    It is good to see the improvements in the Groveport-Madison district facilities and educational planning.

    Many issues of the Southeast Messenger include articles of district plans, accomplishments, and progress of the new high school. Over the last two years, there have been several articles stating that finances for the district are good.
    Some of the articles talk of the features in the new High School such as:
    Six science labs and a dozen science classrooms, 12 extended learning areas, open study/work areas, and Smart Boards and technology-based stations.
    Plans call for three art rooms and a room for ceramics instruction.
    There will be two vocal and instrumental music rooms; one large band room and one large choir room; six music practice rooms.
    Labs include a production career-technical lab, business/computer lab, production lab, child development lab, and a life skills lab.
    There will be a business classroom and special needs classrooms. The school will have a library/media center with a multi-media production room.
    Kitchen food prep area, cafeteria, janitorial facilities and maintenance facilities.
    Administrative offices, teacher break area, and security equipment.

    The bond issue that the residents of the district approved is being used to build the new high school.

    The following questions should be addressed by the school board and the administration and the results presented to the residents of the district in a timely manner.

    Is there a comprehensive equipment list for each area of the new high school?
    Do the bond issue funds pay for all of the equipment and furniture needed in each room of the new high school?
    If not, is there a need for an operating levy to purchase everything that is needed to outfit the new high school?

    The time to pass a new operating is before the new high school is opened. The new high school should not be held hostage until a new levy is passed. The residents should not be threatened with delayed opening until a new levy is passed.
    Since the residents and businesses of the district are expected to finance the operation of the schools, education of the students, transportation, and salaries of the staff, teachers, and administrators, they need to plan for more taxes either permanent or temporary well ahead of the need.

    Thank you for your consideration of the residents of the Groveport-Madison School district.


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