In a light Swanton Board of Education meeting Wednesday, a work session was scheduled to discuss the initiative to put Chromebooks in the hands of all Swanton students.
An updated plan for what is called the 1:1 initiative was laid out in the board agenda. Superintendent Jeff Schlade said that other than teachers the Chromebooks would be used as the “main learning tool” for students.
Phase 1 would be to order about 300 new Chromebooks at a cost of approximately $350 per unit for distribution to third, fourth and fifth grade students in January 2016. This time frame would enable the IT department time to format the devices, and teachers to become familiar with the devices as well as have had proper professional development on the use of the Chromebooks for best educational practices prior to the first roll-out to students.
Those students are the initial target group so that the students may then become comfortable with the devices prior to the spring administration of the state’s mandated standardized testing.
The current plan has moved K-2 students to the last phase of the plan, allowing officials to get a better feel for the initiative before handing the devices to young kids.
Similar programs have been implemented in area districts such as Perrysburg and Wauseon.
“I think a session to deal specifically with this would be beneficial,” said board member Shannon Crow. The rest of the board agreed and scheduled a work session for Aug. 12 at 6 p.m. at the board office.
Several personnel items were approved by the board, including new teacher contracts. One year limited contracts were approved by the board for Kevin Heintschel, sixth grade intervention specialist; Julianna Iannucci, third grade; Becky O’Shea, eighth grade language arts; Timothy Ford, middle school science; and Kyle Baker, elementary physical education.
Classified supplemental contracts were approved for Nick Staler, head bowling coach; Kyle Nutter, assistant football coach; Scott Floyd, freshman football and Elaine Hallowell, safety village aide. Certificated supplementals approved included Wade Haselman, athletic director; Kyle Baker, assistant football coach; and Elizabeth Smith, Kayla Brownfield, Tammie Boyd and Tyler Lauber, Safety Village teachers.
Recreation contracts were approved for Sandy Eitniear as Upper Rec. Soccer Coordinator for spring and fall and field maintenance.
The resignation of Mark Nagel, Swanton Middle School Cross Categorical, was also approved by the board. His assistant football and wrestling coaching contracts were also rescinded.
• The board approved donations to the district that included $4,781.69 from the Lion’s Club to Back Pack Buddies and $1,424.44 from Kroger to the general fund. The Kroger comes from shoppers selected Swanton Local Schools with the Kroger Plus Card account.
Other donations include $750 from Swanton American Legion to the girls soccer team account, $674.40 from Rose Photography to the Middle School Principal’s Account, $454 from Rose Photography to the High School Principal’s Account, $451 from Swanton Parents Club to Park Elementary Principal’s Account, $250 from Read for Literacy to High School Principal’s Account, $200 from Swanton Subway to Recreation Program and $100 from Worthington Industries to Recreation Program.
• The board approved the purchase of a new school bus at a cost of $89,160.
• Treasurer Joyce Kinsman said that bond refunding would be reviewed. She said it is possible the district could save $500,000 by reducing the term.
• The board approved the Food Service Management Company contract with Compass Group USA, through its Chartwells division. Kinsman and Schlade looked into other options but decided to stay with Chartwells.
• Board members approved the cheerleaders trip to UCA Cheerleading Camp at Bowling Green State University July 25-28.