NEW ULM - The District 88 Board of Education Thursday accepted a technology plan for 2013-15, mandated by the state.
Technology Director Bill Sprung presented the plan. It included mandated sections as a mission statement, goals and objectives, a description of policies and procedures and the district's technology infrastructure, professional development, the technology budget, and an implementation section.
Among some interesting points mentioned by Sprung:
The district has one usable computer for every four to five students (not counting staff computers or other machines not accessible to students). This ratio is relatively typical of school districts.
The oldest lab in the district is nine years old.
Computers are rotated in a way that keeps staff machines most up-to-date, and the oldest staff computers are about four years old.
About 60 iPod touches and about 30 iPads are available for staff use, with plans to allow interfacing between them and SmartBoards.
Ninety-five percent of all classrooms have SmartBoards.
The technology budget in the past three years has been about $100,000, down from about $150,000 ten years ago.
About 82 percent of staff who responded to a technology survey consider themselves average to very good with technology, and 8 percent of them consider themselves technology leaders.
The board also approved a literacy plan for next school year required by the state and presented by Jefferson Principal Pam Kirsch.
The purpose of the plan is to ensure students achieve grade-level proficiency and read well by grade 3. The way proficiency is measured is by whether students pass state comprehensive assessment in third grade.
Like the technology plan, the literacy plan follows a state-mandated format.
The plan outlines overall goals as well as specifics such as the reading series in use at Jefferson, and various reading programs, with related intervention tools and assessments (for example, the AIMSweb Reading Benchmark Assessment administered three times a year, and a three-tier intervention model referred to as RTI).
The board approved a two-year leave of absence without pay or benefits for teacher Julie Larson and various resignations and new hirings.