September 16, 2015
SEPTEMBER 2015 RSU #23 | Old Orchard Beach, Maine
Financial Update: We are already into the 3rd month of our new fiscal year! The auditors were here last week to go over the previous year and things went very well. So far to date, through August of 2015, we are under budget for this year which is great news. Thanks to everyone for being aware of your budgets and helping to ensure we are spending responsibly!
Transportation: As we start the 15/16 school year, our concerns were centered on the new start times for the district along with the shift in moving 3rd grade to Loranger. The drop off areas at Loranger were changed and with the help of the staff and parents at both Jameson and Loranger, we have had a smooth beginning to the year ensuring students have been making it to the correct bus. I would also like the thank the administration of both schools for their efforts to help us. We have added two new staff: Stacy Taylor is driving the Saco/ Dayton bus and William Russell is our new bus aid.
Superintendent’s Corner We welcomed RSU23 staff back to begin a new school year with an opening day workshop on Wednesday Aug. 26th. This was followed by a second workshop day on Thurs. Aug.27th. The professional development focus of the two teacher workshop days was on evaluating and assessing where the different grade levels (K-12) presently are at in the standards & curriculum work that was started a year ago and will be on-going work this year. Open houses were held at Loranger on Wed. Aug. 26th and at Jameson Elementary & OOBHS on Thurs. Aug. 27th. Teachers and staff welcomed back students on Mon. Aug. 31st. For the first time in memory, students started school before labor day and registered 4 days of school prior to the Labor Day weekend. We start the new school year with a number of new changes & initiatives summarized as follows: ~A new Pre-K program funded by a 4-year federal grant that is comprised of (2) two Pre-K classrooms housed at Jameson Elementary school ~Loranger Middle School changing its name to Loranger Memorial School in response to moving the 3rd grade from Jameson Elementary to Loranger. ~A new double modular unit placed at Loranger to provide the necessary additional space to accommodate the 3rd grade moving up to LMS. ~A new Restorative Classroom & RtI initiative at Loranger to support students who are displaying inappropriate behaviors
September 16, 2015
~The former Saco Transition Program (STP) was acquired by RSU23 last year from Saco, but was being housed in a facility in Saco will now be physically moving to OOB. We have renamed the program TIDES, which is an acronym that stands for TEACHING INDEPENDENCE DIVERSITY EMPATHY & SELF-ESTEEM. The program will be housed in a quadmodular unit on the OOBHS campus.
Technology: Technology is off to a great start this fall in RSU23. We have expanded our iPad program to sixth grade this year. RSU23 now support student learning with iPads 1:1 in grades six through twelve. While having an iPad is fun for the students and the apps are really cool, having access to this digital device means so much more. Now, with our 1:1 iPad program, student learning can take place anywhere, anytime, both in and out of school. Students have a greater opportunity to personalize their learning experience. They will feel more engaged in class. Learning will be more relevant to who they are and who they want to be. They will be able to be more creative by creating movies, art, presentations, animations, and other unique content. Posting to blogs and creating other digital artifacts help students create a positive “digital footprint” which will help them to procure enrollment or employment in their future post-graduation life. Students, use your iPad to reach for the stars. The possibilities are unlimited.
~We have a significant number of new staff (1 new administrator / 10 new teachers /15 new Ed. Techs) joining our district. ~Harriman Architectural Contract work will be ongoing as we move toward a facilities plan that we are hopeful will result the approval of a new school construction project ~Two important educational initiatives that we will be engaged in this year are: 1. Piloting a new Educator-Effectiveness (Teacher & Principal Evaluation) plan developed last year; and 2. Continuing our work in developing a PreK-12 Proficiency-Based Educational system Teachers, staff, and students are excited and enthusiastic to be starting a new school year. We look forward to having a very productive and rewarding year in RSU 23.
September 14, 2015
Special Education Updates During the 2015-2016 School Year the RSU #23 Special Education Department will partner with the Maine Department of Education to conduct an audit. Helene Stevens & I have attended training designed to provide us with information about the upcoming audit. In order to prepare for this audit the special education staff will participate in several trainings aimed at refining our practices and programming. In the coming weeks, Helene and I will be completing a self-assessment of 30 files (20% of special education population). Once we send this assessment into the State they will review and set a date for a visit to the District. During this visit, the DOE will select files to review and conduct an assessment. Once the reviews are complete the DOE will issue a letter of finding and will identify corrective action. Much of the professional development throughout the school year will be in response to the corrective action plan. More details will be provided in our department meetings. Welcoming TIDES Program to OOB The RSU successfully acquired the Saco Transition Program (STP) in September 2014. This program is a day treatment program that provides services to both Old Orchard Beach and Saco students. Per the agreement, the RSU has until the end of the FY 16 school year to relocate the program. To reconnect our students with OOB community, we are pleased to announce that after much effort the new TIDES Program is tentatively scheduled to arrive, and be ready for occupancy, by the beginning of October 2015. Of course, with any construction project the anticipated date is subject to change. In order to promote its new identity STP will be renamed the TIDES Program- Teaching Independence Diversity Empathy & Self Esteem. Currently, this program serves grades 9-12 but given projected district needs, this program will shift to a 6-12 day treatment program in the future. The TIDES Program is not considered a separate entity. TIDES is considered an Old Orchard Beach High School Program as all students who attend this program work towards earning an OOB High School diploma. NEW HIRES: WELCOME TO THE BEACH! Grade 3 Resource Teacher: Rachel Presby LMS Day Treatment Teacher: Marc Oliver TIDES Program Speech Pathologist: MaKenzie Holland Jameson & LMS Occupational Therapist: Molly Walrath LMS & OOB High School Ed. Tech: Jen MacDonald Jameson (SUN Room K-2) Ed. Tech: Tanya MacAlevey LMS (FLS 3-5) Ed. Tech: Susan Legere LMS (FLS 6-8) Ed. Tech: Mark Tidd LMS (Resource 3-5) Ed. Tech: Will Fulford LMS (Resource 6-8) Ed. Tech: Charity Harris LMS (FLS 3-5) Ed. Tech: To be hired TIDES Program Ed. Tech: To be hired LMS (Resource 3-5) STAFF UPDATES & RESIGNATIONS Zach O’Brien will not be returning to the TIDES Program as he was recently hired for the library Ed. Tech position at OOB High School. Congratulations Zach on your new position and thanks for all your hard work last year at STP. 3
September 14, 2015
Special Ed. Cont.
Malory Petersen has accepted a new position in another district. Darlene Dodier has resigned from her position at LMS. Thanks for all your support and dedication throughout the years, Darlene. You will be missed! Brittany Brockelbank will not be returning as the TIDES teacher in the Fall as she has accepted a new position at a STEM school in Tennessee. Good Luck Brittany and thanks for all your support at STP. Kathryn Garritty has moved into her new role in the Pre-K Program. Thanks for your hard work in the SUN Room last year. Good luck in your new position. Rachel Morrison is transitioning into her new role as teacher in the Pre-K Program. Good Luck Rachel and thanks for all your support in the SUN Room last year.
Benefit Announcement: New Vision Plan Central Office is proud to announce the addition of a new vision plan to RSU 23's current benefit package. The vision plan, named Blue View Vision, is being offered through Anthem BlueCross BlueShield and will be administered separately from the District's current medical plans. It's possible for members to save an average of 63% on purchases through network providers as compared to retail out-of-pocket costs. BENEFIT HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE: • Routine eye exam each calendar year. The district's medical plans only allow for one routine eye exam every two years. • $200.00 Allowance on eyeglass frames - one pair every two years. Plus 20% off remaining balance. • Eyeglass lenses: one pair every calendar year. • Contact lenses: once every calendar year instead of eyeglass lenses. • $15.00 Co-pay. Please keep an 'EYE' out for additional information via email between now and October. Information packets will also be made available for pick-up in Central Office. The enrollment period for this program will be October 1 - 15, 2015 with an effective date of November 1, 2015 for the 2015-16 school year. The effective date of the plan thereafter will be September 1.