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NYM makes next move with tech levy

"This was a good month," Superintendent Todd Cameron said at the school board meeting Monday night in New York Mills.

November began with an approval of a technology referendum. Soon after, the first school carnival brought in higher than expected turnout. And the month ended with Cameron completing a draft of the mandatory Elementary School Improvement Plan.

Cameron said the technology committee will begin meeting again this week. The committee has elementary and high school teachers, administration, and school board members, and will come up with a plan on how the technology referendum money will be spent.

Step one of technology improvements will happen during this coming Christmas break, when Wi-Fi (wireless internet) hubs will be put up around the school. Once all classrooms have Wi-Fi capability, there will be more opportunities for technology in the classrooms.

Grad testing

Graduation retesting took place last month. Seven seniors tested in math, and one passed. Seven seniors and juniors tested in reading, and three passed. High School Principal Blaine Novak said, compared to other districts that had seniors to retest, the number of retakes in NY Mills is low. Any student who failed the test will be offered remedial classes and other testing opportunities.

All seniors must pass the reading test in order to receive a diploma.

Grant update

Novak also gave a grant update to the school board. NY Mills currently has two grants - Teaching American History (TAH) grant and Perpich Center for Arts Education (PCAE) grant.

The TAH grant brings more primary resources into the classroom, such as newspapers with current news, and actual historical documents. Using different sources, aside from textbooks in the classroom, would benefit history class, Novak said. The five-year grant is in its fourth year.

The PCAE grant brings high quality art experiences into the classroom by offering professional development for teachers. Two teachers will attend an all-expense paid conference next year.

The next regularly scheduled board meeting will be Dec. 19 at 6 p.m.