Douglass USD 396 BOE met Monday evening to discuss technology matters, resignations and employment

The school board from USD 396 (Douglass) met Monday evening to discuss matters running the gamut from technology to resignations and employment.

First on the agenda, Kim Hamilton, district technology director, talked about the difficulties presented by all the Windows XP machines no longer being supported. These machines are complicating the everyday life of teachers and students in the school district by making the simple process of printing nearly impossible

The solution may be in replacing some or all of these laptops with iPads.

New upgrades and technological advances have made it possible for students to take their Accelerated Reading tests on iPads. This new information coupled with the possibility of saving the district money in the process seems to be sweetening the deal for a product switch as early as spring.

No vote has been held on this topic at this time.

Hamilton also shared the annual report stating upgrades and changes made including:

• Increased bandwidth on the districts wi-fi

• Changed wireless access to prevent excessive and unauthorized usage

• Upgraded 2 of 4 servers

• Upgraded firewall

• Adobe certification now available for students

In addition, the district received a lamination machine and there was a donation of $980 to the Terry Kaylor Scholarship Fund.

The next item on the agenda was an update to the Teacher Evaluation Procedure. The state requires certain parameters to be met but allows each school to choose the procedure program that suits their school best. At this time the board is reviewing a new program that has more scientific evidence attesting to its accuracy and fairness. The program, called CUES, stands for claims to take a more involved and proactive approach to successful teaching. The board plans to have a decision by spring and, if approved, have the new program fully implemented by the beginning of the 2014 school year.

Lastly, a new teacher, Jasmine Bredette, has been extended a contract to be a second grade teacher for the second semester. The only resignation at this time was accepted yesterday from former bus driver Joe Peterson. Peterson was the driver of the bus swept off the road and into a river on Halloween as he tried to cross a bridge covered with 18-24 inches of water with 10 students on board.

Also on the agenda:

• approved financial reports

• approved expenditures