City schools working with MCHD to bring all students back to campus

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Middle and high school families opting for in-person instruction this school year have seen their students attend class on a rotating, every-other-day basis, with upward of 100 choosing full remote instruction during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Though rotating schedules and remote learning are working, administrators at Crawfordsville Schools would rather see every student return to campus, the district’s board of trustees agreed Thursday.

And the only way to achieve “normalcy” in the classroom, Superintendent Dr. Scott Bowling said, is to approach the issue through a series of metrics.

“The statistics we look at are positivity rate, using a seven-day rolling average, and a 14-day incidence rate per 10,000,” Bowling said, noting the metrics are in conjunction with Montgomery County Health Department Health Officer Dr. Scott Douglas. “Right now in Montgomery County we have 3.8% positivity on the seven-day rolling average.

“The target for that is under 5%,” he continued. “So that’s when Dr. Douglas would say, at least according to the positivity rate ... that particular indicator would say it’s under control.”

However, the seven-day positivity rate only tells half the story, which is why the district and the MCHD utilize the 14-day incidence rate.

“It’s not terrible, but it’s 8.4% — the target is 5%,” Bowling said. “Not only does it need to be 5% and under, it also needs to be decreasing. Then we’ll see that positive curve going down in terms of new cases per 10,000.”

Only then, can the district achieve its goal of bringing everyone back to school. They will be asking themselves: How long do we think we’ll stay here? Can we keep it there for a while?

“I don’t think we want to be going back and forth in terms of modes of education on our teachers and our kids and our parents and everybody else,” Bowling said. “We’ll want to make sure that even once we hit those numbers that we stay there for a while.

“At least ‘weeks,’ I would say, before we return to full in-person.”

In other business, the board:

• Approved the 2021-22 school year budget for advertisement.

• Approved the hire, transfer, termination and resignation of several employees. They include: Amanda Isajewicz, hire as Nicholson music teacher; DeDe Groves, hire as CMS ELA teacher; Susan Sizemore, hire as Hose aide; Joni Jefferies, hire as Hose media specialist; Tracy Moon, hire as CMS teacher’s aide; Savannah Dinius, resignation as Hose teacher’s aide; Stacy Adams, resignation as CMS assistant; Kelsey Feese, resignation as Nicholson music teacher; Sarah Rogers, resignation as Hoover aide; Carrie Olofson, resignation as Hose aide; Peggy Boyd, resignation as Hose aide; Hailey France, resignation as Walnut support aide; Sherri Heggemeier, resignation as CMS teacher’s aide; Linda Chapman, resignation as CMS aide; Christie Thomas, resignation as Hoover assistant; Tyler Thompson, resignation as CMS ELA teacher; Kylene Simpson, resignation at CTE administrative assistant and career coach; Lillian Hess, resignation as Willson aide; Cory Crossley, resignation as Hose receptionist; Kaylee Fletcher, resignation as Hoover life skills aide; Concetta Horman, transfer from CMS aide to CMS assistant; Morgan Howard, transfer from Hose library assistant to Hose first-grade teacher; and Cami Myers, transfer from CMS aide to CMS assistant.

The next regularly scheduled school board meeting is 6 p.m. Sept. 10 at Crawfordsville Middle School, 705 Wallace Ave.

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