By ARIANA R. CHERRY
Principals and math teachers presented a potential new math curriculum for the Arthur school district at the most recent school board meeting. They have been meeting and researching different ones since this past fall. Two pilot ones, Bridges and Reveal, were started around Christmas time.
Members of the pilot team for the grade school math were Adrienne Seal, Rose Hollingsworth, Rhonda Rhodes, Erin Beck, Chris Foreman, Andrew Peralta and Marla Graham. There were teachers in grades K-5 and Special Ed who participated in the pilot programs.
The Mathematics program that the grade schools are looking at is called Bridges. Some positive points about Bridges are that it is a hands-on curriculum, focuses on number sense and it explains different ways to get the answer.
ALAH High School members of their mathematics adoption/pilot team were Tricia Sluder, Guy Bates, Saylor Bower, Morgan Wendt, Melissa Hopkins, Amy Tighe, Sam Binion and Bryton Ragon.
During the months of September and October, the team made a list of what they wanted and felt was important to have in a math curriculum. The program that this pilot team is looking at is called Reveal. Some of the items that made Reveal different from what is currently being used is that it offered student lead activities. By offering this, it gives students opportunities for activities that lead into every lesson. It also requires more critical thinking and word questions.
Reveal also allows students to do assignments online and it gives them instant feedback. For example, if they got the math problem incorrect, it will explain to them what they got wrong and how to rework the problem. There is also the opportunity for students to download the app where it allows them to have the math textbook on their phone and/or computer. This way, they do not have to take the book home, and they can highlight items in the book that they find helpful.
The curriculum is easy to learn and a new teacher could have the ability to walk in and have no problem learning what they are supposed to do. Teachers can also go in and customize and edit assignment problems for the students.
This presentation of math curriculums was for information purposes only and the board will be voting and adopting them in the near future at one of the next board meetings.
Jared Blaudow presented the donation program, Purposity to the board. Purposity comes from the two words purpose and generosity. On its website, it states, “Purposity comes from the core belief that humanity finds purpose through generosity.” (https://www.purposity.com/). By using this website/app, it makes it easier to give certain needs to schools and non-profit organizations. Those groups can sign up, create an account, and list what their needs are. Then individuals can sign up for an account, download the app so that they can see the list of different needs that are being requested. From there, they can help provide those needs to that specific organization or school.
Both the donor and school and/or organization are completely anonymous. When the need is fulfilled, it is shipped to the receiver. Blaudow stated that the typical average need ranges to about $30.
Other items that were discussed include:
-The district received $10,780 in donations. The bulk of that were donors who graciously donated funds for the senior trip. “When we need something, our community definitely steps up,” commented Superintendent Cheek. The Knights Sports Boosters donated $2,000 for hurdles. Tight Line Braid donated $300 to the Bass Fishing Team. Below are all of the donors who helped fund the senior trip:
– Arthur Flower Shop – $100.00
– Jackie Larck – $30.00
– Derrick and Jennifer Ingram – $300.00
– John and Sharon Daily – $500.00
– Anonymous – $1000.00
– Julie and Jesse Thompson – $200.00
– La Cascada – $4920.00
– The Homestead Bakery – $230.00
– Mr. and Mrs. Wes Fredrick – $200.00
– Mr. and Mrs. John Watkins – $1000.00
-The following non-certified job descriptions were approved: Building Secretary, Custodian, Director of Maintenance, Elementary Principal, High School Principal, Paraprofessional, Special Education Coordinator, Superintendent, Tech Director,
Special Education Coordinator, Tech Director, Unit Secretary and Bookkeeper.
-During the Superintendent’s Report, Cheek reported the following:
•We continue to work with Davis Houk for the AGS/LGS Summer A/C project
•Some core samples of the parking lots were taken in April. In May, the district will go to get some bids, and then those bids will be awarded in June.
•The district will be working on an amended budget to see which projects they will be able to do.
•The scoreboard has come in early, which means there will be an early installation. The district will also be looking at some possible landscaping options.
•Some of the summer projects to be done include track resurfacing, AC project at AGS and LGS and some of the playing fields will be getting fertilized.
-Cheek announced that this was his fourth year as the Superintendent in the district. He is still very grateful for the opportunity. He also wanted to express his gratitude towards the district staff and administration as they went through the curriculum adoption process. Cheek was also very grateful for the community support for the senior trip. Approximately 780 cinnamon rolls were sold to people within the communities. “People step up and businesses step up,” said Cheek.
April 19, 2023
•Recommend for hire, Taylor Horn as the Social Worker/Guidance Counselor for AHGS for the 2023-2024 school year
•Accept the letter of resignation from Anna Shroyer effective at the end of the school year
•Accept the letter of resignation of Keeley Houser as the Speech and Language Pathologist effective at the end of the school year
•Accept the letter of resignation of Kayla Huckelby as English teacher at the high school effective at the end of the school year
•Accept the letter of resignation of Kendall Huffman as English teacher, Class Sponsor, Mentor Program Coordinator, Yearbook Sponsor, National Honor Society Sponsor, at the high school effective at the end of the school year
•Accept the letter of resignation of Nathan Anastas as Social Studies teacher at the high school effective at the end of the school year
•Accept the letter of resignation for Bryton Ragon as 6th grade teacher at AGS at the end of the school year
•Accept the letter of resignation for Roger Punches as 5th grade teacher at AGS
•Accept the letter of resignation for Megan Brown as Special Education teacher at AHGS
•Recommend for hire Mitch Wilson, Summer School Driver’s Education
•Recommend for hire Catey Baldwin, Summer School APEX
•Recommend for hire Kayla Huckelby for Summer School English
•Accept the letter of resignation from Megan Miller as the Secretary at AGS
•Accept the letter of resignation from Justin Woodard as Assistant Director of Maintenance
•Accept the letter of resignation from Brock Hayse as LGS Janitor
•Recommend for hire Justin Woodard as the Director of Maintenance replacing Mr. Coleman on June 1, 2023
•Recommend for hire Brock Hayse as the Assistant Director of Maintenance replacing Justin Woodard on June 1, 2023
•Recommend for approval, John Hershberger for a volunteer bass fishing coach
•Recommend for approval, James Kazel for a volunteer bass fishing coach
1. Ms. Ford’s Marketing Class is currently doing a project and have created three products that they are selling. The profits are used for a class lunch with the remainder donated to a non-profit organization that has not been chosen yet. This year, the class is selling sword keychains, knights sunglasses, and t-shirts with the District 305 map on the back.
2. On April 1 the Fine Arts Department in conjunction with the Fine Arts Boosters held our annual Dessert Theater. Grades 6 – 12 Band, Chorus and Visual Arts participated in this event. Seniors were showcased in all areas with the visual arts students meeting and greeting by their senior art shows the hour before performances started. Senior music students were showcased with various solo performances throughout the event.
3. National Honor Society recently held its 2023 Induction ceremony. Sixteen new members we inducted. The keynote speaker was Jared Blaudow, and he discussed the importance of community and giving back. During his talk, he mentioned a book titled, The Traveler’s Gift by Andy Andrews. After the ceremony, a group of anonymous community members gifted every NHS student a copy of the book! New Inductees were: Kaci Beachy, Maggie Benedict, Victoria Carter, Mackenzie Condill, Faeryn Davison, Layla Deel, Lillian Edwards, Sara Herschberger, Miah Malin, Emmalee Nall, Alayna Plank, Dylan Price, Danaysha Stutzman, Lucy Wilber, Evanger Wiley, and Addison Yeakel
4. Through candy cane sales and ugly sweater day, Student Council raised $100 that they are donating to Shriners Children’s Hospital through the Atwood Shriner’s group. The two blood drives at the school collected a total of 46 units of blood, so they will be able to award two $250 scholarships. Student Council elections for the 2023-2034 school year are being held on April 25, 2023.
5. Plans for the Senior Trip are underway. We anticipate 73 students attending along with 7 faculty chaperones. ALAH HS Activity Report – February 2023. This class marks the 68th year for this tradition.
6. The High School Construction Class built four new benches for the Softball Field.
7. Visual Arts students will be attending the “Love for the Arts” conference workshop at Eastern Illinois University on April 28th. They will be entering art work in an art show as well as attending hands-on workshops and having a guest speaker talk to them about careers in the Visual Arts.
8. This year’s prom, A Whole New World, is on May 6 at Penn Station. The prom committee has been very busy working on decorating ideas, song lists, and food and drink menus.
9. Rotary Student of the Month nominees were: Nathan Tighe, Maddie Schweighar, Levi Ward, Skyler Graham, Parker Dick, Anna Rawlins, Emma Forman, Seth Savage, Sierra Binion, Sierra Peeler, Noah Shoemaker, Kaulin Morfey, Brody Louden, Jakhany Medina, Savannah Butcher, Daylon Doggett, Oscar Quintero, Kimberly Krutsinger, Brooklyn Gingerich, Bianca Corona, Lindsay Rohacs, and Matteson Barnes. The winner, Jakhany Medina was named at a nominee breakfast held in the library during flex period.
May 6 – Prom @ 7 p.m.
May 9 – Spring Concert @ 7 p.m.
May 10 – Honors Night @ 7 p.m.
May 11 – Honors Program
May 17 – Seniors Visit grade schools, pictures, and luncheon (also seniors last day)
May 21 – Baccalaureate @ 5 p.m.
May 26 – Graduation @ 7 p.m.
Arthur Grade School
State Testing: One big task in front of AGS recently was our annual state testing. Teachers and students worked very hard over the first week of April. We look forward to seeing the growth in our students and to celebrate our students and staff.
Scholastic Bowl: A very exciting night took place on March 30 when AGS took down the undefeated team from Cerro Gordo to win the JHOC Scholastic Bowl Meet. Topping 7 other teams, we were very proud to see our school in the top spot.
Congratulations to Coach Bracken and all of our students.
JH Spring Concert: AGS 6th-8th Grade Band/Chorus students will present their SPRING CONCERT in the ALAH OLD GYM on Tuesday, May 16 at 7:00 p.m. The Concert is free and open to the public.
8th Grade Promotion: The 8th-grade graduation is scheduled for May 25 at 7 pm at the ALAH football field.
Field Trip Season: This month and the upcoming weeks have been very busy for students at AGS in terms of field trips. Last week, our 4th-grade students went to the Engineering Open House at the University of Illinois. In the coming weeks, our
Kindergarten students throughout the district will go to the Children’s Museum and Scovill Zoo. Our 1st-grade students will be visiting the Staerkel Planetarium at Parkland College and our 3rd-grade students will also be attending the Children’s Museum in Decatur to work on different STEM activities. Students and staff are excited to continue their learning outside of the building and hope for good weather.
Kindergarten Readiness Night: Arthur Grade School is excited to welcome our incoming kindergarten students to plan for the start of our next school year on April 27th from 6 to 7 pm. Students will be given materials to help prepare for the summer, meet their teacher and explore their classroom. We are looking forward to seeing all sorts of new and exciting faces.
Atwood-Hammond Grade School Principal’s Report
PTO Family Fun Night: On Friday, March 10 AHGS hosted a Family Fun night again this year, after a few years off due to COVID. The event was a smashing success, just like our school sponsored Financial Family Night. The crowds have really shown up this year and supported our school! One of the highlights was the “Kiss the Goat” contest. Parents and students gave money for their favorite staff member to kiss the goat. That evening we raised over 250 dollars alone for this one booth. The race finally came down to Mr. Jefferson and Mrs. Fleming. They had both raised over 100 dollars each, so both of them agreed to kiss the goat. The crowd went wild!
AHGS Scholastic Bowl: Also, after several years off, AHGS fielded a scholastic bowl team. We had both a varsity and junior varsity team this year. The point system is totalled up for scholastic bowl throughout the season and there are no clear winners each contest, as point totals change depending on the opponent. The totals are used to determine the “seeds” for the tournament. Our varsity placed in the 6th seed for the tournament in Bement, held on March 30, out of 13 teams. They were beaten in the first round by Arthur Grade School, who went on to win it all. I was very proud of our team and how well they did throughout their first season back in the game!
Atwood Community Easter Egg Hunt: The Atwood Community Easter Egg hunt was held inside the school again this year. We had a good turnout, though the weather was cold and windy outside. I was happy to assist and meet and greet families and students, even on a Saturday. I even got to meet the Easter Bunny. It was good to see many families at the event, even ones that do not have students in our school.
American Heart Association (Jump Rope for Heart) Kick-off at AHGS: Amy Ensign from the American Heart Association came to speak with our primary and intermediate students last week about how to keep your heart healthy and all of the ways that students and adults can stay active and healthy.
Lovington Grade School Principal’s Report
1. There were some leprechaun shenanigans going on in our PreK room. The students had built traps but they were not able to catch a single leprechaun! They did follow leprechaun footprints throughout the school
2. Atwood Hammond and LGS 8th graders traveled to Lake Land college for their Career day expo. The students were encouraged to align themselves with those who make good choices, and that their name is their brand and the importance of good decision making now as it affects their future.
3. Our 4th graders traveled to the University of Illinois for an Engineering Open House! They had so much fun and even learned some things!
4. Student council sponsored another Jr high dance on the April 14. DJ Davis dropped the tunes for a fun night of memory making!
5. OG training for teachers from all three elementary schools were able to attend this reading training. So far we have had 6 teachers go and next week we have 5 more going. This will be a great addition to our reading instruction and intervention time!
Shout out to Andrew who organized it all!
6. New banners- Mr. Seal did a great job of getting banners printed for the Lovington gym! Bill and Justin got them hung up and they look amazing!
7. Rochelle Lutteral has been selected to be a part of the ISBE Literacy Plan Writing Team. This means she will have a voice and be an integral part of the state literacy plan! We are super proud of her!