It was business as usual for Allen East school board during its monthly meeting last night.
The meeting came a little more than a week after the Allen East Education Association announced it was filing unfair labor practice charges with the State Employment Relations Board, based on the school board’s refusal to bargain in good faith during earlier salary negotiations.
Superintendent Mel Rentschler said there won’t be much news about the charges until their deadline to file an affidavit by March 11. However, the district did request mediation, which would only come into play if the motion were also made by the association.
In a quick discussion about PARCC testing, which has been going on for about a week and a half now, the superintendent mentioned the school district has experienced both pros and cons during the testing.
For example, using a large number of computers takes away from technology in the classroom. However, children were responding well to the new change to an online format. The amount of time spent testing, though, is still a concern for educators, the administration and government officials.
The majority of the meeting was spent discussing Schoology, an online educational management system, sort of like ProgressBook, Blackboard and Facebook molded into one. It allows teachers to share assignments, additional materials among other things, as well as communicate with other teachers, students and parents.
As a part of an initial trial that began 13 months ago, teachers Cam Staley and Jarrod Wehri, as well as others, have very much enjoyed the program and its capabilities.
“It enhances education,” Staley said.
All of the district’s teachers will be trained to use Schoology this coming June, enabling the system to be adopted schoolwide the beginning of next school year.