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Dr. M. Neil Terhune, Superintendent

6 days ago

Esmeralda County School District

233 Ramsey, P.O. Box 560

Goldfield, Nevada 89013

Office 775-485-6382

Fax 775-485-3511

Dr. M. Neil Terhune

                                                   Superintendent Board Report May 29, 2018

General Comments:  This last six weeks has been eventful and productive. I never imagined that the smallest school district in the state could have so much fun and schedule so much in its last couple of weeks. I am very appreciative of the support I get from our staff and even more so for the support they are constantly giving to our children. We have enjoyed field trips to Ichthysaur land, Mineral Park, local Goldfield museums and other areas of interest and of course a busy California itinerary for our 8th Graders. The Dyer Community Park gave us a splendid place to enjoy Track and Field Day and then a good old-fashioned water and picnic opportunity as well.  Trees, grass and beautiful weather all combined to make a couple of perfect days in our high desert locale. The year culminated in three award and three graduation ceremonies. I was pleased to attend the graduation of my grandson James Paul Clifford Williams as well as the graduations of several of our local HS students. The Academic Summary presentation at our Special Board meeting was well attended and well received. Thanks to our Parents, Board members and Staff for making all these activities enjoyable and successful. 😊

Setting aside the great work of our staff and students in the classrooms; the following is a summary update of the year from the Central Office perspective.

District Educational Services: I believe that we will be better and more appropriately resourced next year. Let me preface this part of my report by saying that I hope the school district stakeholders understand that revenues for schools are to be utilized to provide the very best education possible for our children. It is important to have a reserve fund balance for contingencies but not at the expense of their education and safety. We must strive to create an appropriate balance. The attached MFR summarizes the staff structure for next year. It has been calculated to address the educational needs of our students.

The district mission is being more directly addressed by way of the Science, Technology, Engineering, (Arts) and Math (STEAM) curriculum. Think back to our Academic School Officer’s (ASOs) presentation last week. Our Middle School goal is to provide project-based, multidisciplinary, technology-enhanced and authentic (real world) instruction with an appropriate integration of media arts. Our PK-5 grades will be back planning off this curriculum. This is an aggressive and positive approach for a school. It is a tribute to your staff’s belief that all students can and will learn at high levels. It is an approach that students will find exciting and we expect to see greater motivation for learning and preparing for HS and beyond.

Silver Peak Elementary (SPE):  Though the staff at SPE have been professionally engaged in a big way, they have been under-utilized due to low enrollment. Some of this has been addressed by the successful recruiting of a family combination that will bring our enrollment from three to 7 students. Between this and the opening of more Lithium mining in July, there is potential for this to remain consistent over time.

Policy Updates: We are still on track to have all our policies reviewed by October. Since January we have completed the review of Safety, Personnel, Instruction, Student, Facilities and Administration.

Collective Bargaining: We have successfully completed negotiations for both the Support Staff and the Certified Associations that resulted in three-year agreements.

Technology Upgrades:   We have entered into contracts with Valley Electric to provide a substantial increase in internet service for students at SPE and Goldfield. I am asking Dan Slentz to come up with a solution that allows this service into all the GF Teacher housing. The district is currently reviewing a proposal to upgrade our phone system with them as well. Selected servers have been refurbished by Oasis.

Real Estate:  The district has had an offer for the 5.08 acres East of GF. The purchase of a small house for a teacherage is also being considered. I have asked our Broker and Attorney to be on the phone Tuesday for your questions and for explanations.

Safety:  The district recently approved the Emergency Operations Policy that was provided by POOL/PACT’s School Safety Operations organization. The staff has received on-site training twice during in-service days this year. Selected members of board and staff have received off-site training.  The District Safety Committee has met monthly to address the prioritization, implementation and construction related to school safety. Construction of peep holes (completed) and upgrading locks (in progress) has begun. Hardening windows and constructing safe rooms are next. The district has conducted on site Active Assailant drills in conjunction with the County Sheriff’s Department.

Maintenance:  The maintenance section will lose Jesse Mazur due to his resignation. The district has received a great deal of maintenance support from him over the last fourteen years. We wish him well in the future.

The maintenance of our district buildings and grounds areas need significant attention. This is especially true of Silver Peak. The Dyer storage house on the North is being cleaned out and brought back up to standard for student use. The Middle School lab and the Arts will utilize that building. We need to get internet service out there.  We need some minor internal work at all three sites as well. Teacher housing at all three sites need maintenance. I intend to aggressively augment our manpower and other resources on this issue this summer and the next.

Budget Hearing:  The presentation on May 29th will be a Power Point that, a) reflects the approach approved by the board at the December meeting and, b) is readily understood by the lay community person that may attend. The basic Power Point is attached and will be supplemented with the documents that the board is used to seeing for greater detail if desired.

Vision, Mission, Belief Statements
We envision a highly effective district-wide safe and orderly Professional Learning Community that results in a premier school of highly engaged and highly motivated students preparing for High School and 21st Century College, Career and Citizenship responsibilities.

Our mission is to create a safe and orderly environment with a highly effective PK-8 district-wide Professional Learning Community that appropriately delivers NVCCSS to a rural student population that will result in a 100% graduation of eighth grade students adequately prepared for High School responsibilities.

Belief Statements
WE BELIEVE that all students can learn at high levels.
1. WE BELIEVE that this can best be achieved by becoming and performing as Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). We will be guided by three questions:
a. What is it we want our students to learn?
b. How will we know our students have learned?
c. What will we do when they do not learn?
2. WE BELIEVE in providing a learning environment that fosters citizenship, a high level of health and physical fitness; and one that supports a moral/ethical approach to the challenges of our current society, to college and to career readiness.
3. WE BELIEVE in providing a learning environment that fosters respect for social and individual diversity.
4. WE BELIEVE that “Family and Community Engagement in Public Schools” is critical to student success.