Please Join Us at the Efficiency Task Force 2015 Public Forum Monday, March 2, 2015, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Avon High School - Hendricks Regional Health Performing Arts Center (Door #33) Avon Community Schools has a rich history of parent leadership and involvement in decisions impacting our schools. The Avon School Board of Trustees has charged district leaders to develop potential operational changes to enhance educational opportunities and increase efficiencies while maintaining excellence. To that end, the ACSC Efficiency Task Force 2015 was formed in November. The Efficiency Task Force (ETF) will present models at a Public Forum on March 2. Participants will be able to share comments and questions in small groups after the presentation. The models can be viewed now on the ETF web page (http://www.avon-schools.org/Page/12062). Live streaming of the forum will be available. Please check the ACSC website (www.avon-schools.org) for the link at the time of the forum. A link of the taped presentation as well as information presented at the forum will be posted on the ACSC website after the forum is complete. In addition, a survey will be available on the ACSC website following the forum for anyone but especially those who are unable to attend. The Efficiency Task Force (ETF) focused on three areas: potential boundary adjustments for K-6, a review of school start and end times for all buildings, and the impact of those decisions on transportation services. The 28-member ETF is comprised of 12 parents (one from each school), teachers and administrators. Avon High School is located at 7575 East 150 South, Avon, IN 46123.
ACSC has recently adopted a revised Volunteer Background Check policy which requires a background history review and search of the sex offender registry for ALL volunteers in our buildings. For detailed information regarding this enhanced safety practice, please click on the link above.
Weather Delay/Closure Information To ensure that you are notified when weather delays or closures are announced, parents/guardians of ACSC students may now adjust preferences to receive telephone, email and/or text messages. Cellular, landlines, and email addresses provided by parents/guardians during student enrollment will be contacted automatically unless your preferences have been adjusted. If you want to change your call preferences or add text messaging, please visit http://mbcurl.me/WH6Z for more information.
Avon Schools Recognize Autism Awareness Month
Avon Community Schools is pleased to be part of two special events during Autism Awareness Month in April. Jed Baker, a national expert in the field of Autism Spectrum Disorders, will be presenting at an all-day event on Wednesday, April 15th at Avon Middle School North. We are proud to partner with the Indiana Resource Center for Autism to bring this guest speaker to Indiana. The event is open to the public. Please visit this link for registration information: http://www.iidc.indiana.edu/index.php?pageId=3730.
Avon Community Schools’ Autism Team is hosting “A Night of “Awe”tism” on April 16th at Avon Intermediate School East from 6-8 p.m. This fair will feature various community resources such as Strides to Success, the Flip Zone as well as school based programs. The event is for families with students who have ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorders) or other developmental delays. There will be several breakout sessions. Avon’s Middle School Life Skills class members will be selling food items (potato bar and popcorn) and our Intermediate Life Skills class members will be selling snow cones. Childcare will be provided with a reservation--call Brenda Whaley at 317-544-6083 to reserve a spot.
Hendricks Regional Health Donates Technology to ACSC
In August 2013, Hendricks Regional Health expanded its partnership with Avon School Corporation to include a wider spectrum of health and wellness initiatives. As the school system’s exclusive healthcare provider, the hospital provides sports medicine care and athletic training for student athletes and the Avon High School marching band. In addition, the collaboration includes health programming for school employees through an on-site wellness clinic and healthy lifestyle support by certified wellness coaches.
The donated technology includes 412 desktop computers and 25 monitors. The computers were replaced as part of a hospital-wide infrastructure upgrade. The provided devices are compatible with the latest operation system and programs, and are ready to be put into service.
ACSC is already replacing the oldest computers throughout the district. The computers will be in use in classrooms allowing students to access learning applications that were not previously available because of the age of some of the equipment.
“We have embraced our role as the exclusive healthcare partner to Avon Community School Corporation and want to support the organization’s efforts – whether it be on the playing field, in the community, or the classroom,” said Hendricks Regional Health President & CEO Kevin Speer. “Technology is a critical component in the learning environment, and can help engage students in their education. We are truly excited to be a part of that.”
“We certainly appreciate such a generous donation from our partners at Hendricks Regional Health,” stated Dr. Margaret (Maggie) Hoernemann, Avon Community School superintendent. “The computers will enhance the learning environment for thousands of our students. Having updated technology is a crucial component in the education process.”
Since 1962, Hendricks Regional Health has served as the area's leading healthcare provider by delivering innovative care with a personal touch. The hospital strives to be the indispensable healthcare partner to patients, payers, physicians, associates and employers. Licensed by the Indiana State Department of Health and accredited by the Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program, Hendricks Regional Health staffs a full complement of physicians in a variety of specialties at locations in Danville, Avon, Plainfield, Brownsburg, Lizton and Bainbridge. To learn more call (317) 745-3627 or visit www.hendricks.org.
Avon Community School Corporation offers children high quality educational instruction with a keen focus on improving student achievement. More than 9,000 students are being served during the 2014-15 school year in grades K-12 in 12 schools (seven elementary; two intermediate; two middle and one high school). ACSC operates on a balanced calendar schedule. Visit the ACSC website at www.avon-schools.org.
March 13, 2015
The Board of the Avon Community School Corporation is grateful to the 28-member Efficiency Task Force (ETF) for its work. The ETF (comprised of parents, teachers, and administrators) was convened to assist Avon Schools to identify ways to increase efficiencies while maintaining excellence. The work of the ETF culminated on Wednesday, March 11, when the Board took action.
We are grateful for the significant engagement of our community as we discussed ways to be more efficient by examining feeder schools, boundaries, transportation efficiencies and school schedules. Here are some details about the level of engagement of our parents/staff/students/community:
March 2-Public Forum Presentation/Discussion
240+ in the audience
March 2-Videostreaming of Public Forum Presentation
344 unique viewers
Videotape of Public Forum
331 watching online
Comments at Public Forum
12 pages unique comments
677 comments, 49 pages
Efficiency Task Force webpage
14,000+ unique views
The Board carefully considered all of the input and took the following action:
1. There will be no changes to K-4 schools’ boundaries for the 2015-16 school year. Opinions about combining Maple/White Oak to one campus and adjusting the other K-4 boundaries to address building capacity were quite varied. The Board’s biggest concern, however, was that we were unsure as to how long the proposed boundaries would be effective. Despite the detailed research of the ETF, only a professional demographic study will provide the level of detail about projected growth that will allow us to confidently change the boundaries. A demographic study will be undertaken later in 2015 and the Board will revisit the issue of boundaries for the 16-17 school year (at the earliest).
With the East/West boundaries changing as indicated below (#2), we will be closer to having K-4 feeder schools. Three schools will feed into East and three into West with White Oak split evenly between East/West.
2. The boundaries for Intermediate East and Intermediate West will be changed for the 2015-16 school year to match the boundaries of North and South. This will affect this year’s 5th graders as approximately 370 5th graders will switch to the opposite intermediate school for their 6th grade year. This decision does not affect current 6th graders going to middle school next year. The middle school boundaries will not change. Thus, 6th graders who currently live south of US Highway 36 will attend Avon Middle School South and 6th graders who currently live north of US Highway 36 will attend Avon Middle School North.
We have a past practice of allowing parents to request exceptions to boundaries. If parents of current 5th graders prefer their child remain at his/her current intermediate school and the parents are willing to provide transportation, they should make this request in writing to Dr. Maryanne McMahon by April 20, 2015. If class sizes allow, ACSC will try to accommodate those requests.
Transition activities are being developed to assist our current 5th graders and their parents to get to know and feel comfortable in their new schools. Watch for information after spring break.
3. School Schedules: This topic was perhaps the most challenging in that parents/staff/administrators/students all had very differing opinions. Ultimately the Board selected Schedule 2 (approximate times are listed below). Knowing that this schedule did not increase the important collaboration our professional teachers desperately need, the Board elected to increase the number of delayed start days from five to ten. These days will be once/month on a consistent day so as to provide some structure. The dates will be announced in the coming weeks after consultation with the administration.
Schedule 2 - Older Students First/Collaboration Time Difficult for MS/HS
AMS South & North 7:35/7:45/2:35
Sycamore, White Oak, 8:20/8:30/3:20
Maple, Pine Tree
Cedar, Hickory, River Birch 8:45/8:55/3:45
AIS East & AIS West 9:05/ 9:15/4:05
Times listed are an approximation. The Board has challenged the administration to work diligently to tighten up the routes and efficiencies so that we can release AIS East and West earlier if at all possible.
The combined savings for our school system will equal approximately $350,000.
We appreciate your patience through this transition period. If you should have any questions, please contact your building principal.
Again, thank you to all the members of the ETF. Your contribution has made our community a better place to educate our children. Also, thank you to all who contributed by offering your opinion; you have been invaluable.
Anne L. Engelhardt, President
Board of School Trustees
Avon Community Schools-Purdue University Collaboration Results in $250,000 Grant
Avon Community School Corporation has been selected to receive a federal Math and Science Partnership (MSP) Grant beginning in 2015. In collaboration with Purdue University, this three-year grant will support teachers in grades 5-7 with significant professional development in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) disciplines with an interdisciplinary approach to learning.
The grant will provide $250,000 in funds to support expert instructors to work with our teachers. The STEM disciplines further expand the meaningful, real-world context of learning while building student access to 21st Century interdisciplinary themes and skills.
“Receiving the MSP Grant is a fantastic boost to our efforts in bringing STEM education into our intermediate programming,” stated Dr. Maryanne McMahon, Assistant Superintendent at Avon Community Schools. “We are thrilled at the opportunity to integrate STEM pedagogy into our classrooms for our students.”
The partnership with Purdue University professors will support professional development for 26 staff members. Avon’s teaching staff expressed excitement regarding the announcement:
“When I think of STEM I think of career opportunities for the future. An education enriched with STEM gives the children of Avon a chance to be competitive with the rest of world. The opportunity with Purdue is a chance for me learn a way of teaching that I did not have in my undergrad experience.” –Mandy Giles (5th Grade Teacher)
“Avon Community Schools is very fortunate to have earned the opportunity to work in partnership with Purdue University to integrate STEM instruction. The conglomeration of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math into our instruction taps into the creative minds of so many of our students. We (teachers) are excited to be given the professional development and resources to implement STEM into our curriculum delivery.” –Lori Taylor (6th Grade Teacher)
“The STEM model is the ultimate goal in teaching science. It incorporates math, reading and ALL of the science skills needed for students in the 21st century. I hope that students will increase their love of science and inquiry. I also hope that it continues to close the gap between boys and girls in the STEM fields as a career.” –Michelle Hadley (6th Grade Teacher)
The MSP Program is a federal formula grant program that funds collaborative partnerships between science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) departments at institutions of higher education (IHEs), and high-need school districts. These partnerships provide intensive, content-rich professional development to teachers and other educators, with the goal of improving classroom instruction and, ultimately, student achievement in math and science.
The MSP grant-writing team included: Angela Rasor, Michele Frossard, Michelle Hadley, Dr. Brian Scott, Dustin LeMay, Jenny Shayotovich, Jason Brames, Dr. Maryanne McMahon and Dr. Carla Johnson (Purdue University).
Four ACSC teachers have been awarded 2015 Lilly Teacher Creativity Fellowships. These $10,000 incredibly competitive fellowships are awarded to educators for personal/professional renewal.
Jared Emmons (AHS) will be traveling to Spain this summer to complete a project entitled, “No Spain, No Gain: Revitalizing the Phrase “¡Soy yo!”
Chris Hill (AHS) will be traveling by bicycle from Richmond, Virginia to Florence, Oregon—approximately 4,000 miles as part of his One Man, One Machine, Two Oceans project. He will be meeting with 20+ professionals who work in STEM fields, ranging from college deans to technicians at alternate energy sites in order to improve the pre-engineering program and robotics club.
Lori Taylor (AIS West) will be writing a memoir entitled Dragonfly: A Mother's Memoir about a Challenging Journey with the Emergence of a Daughter.
Joe Risch (AIS East) was funded for his project entitled “Woodworking in the Old World.” He will be traveling to Milan, Italy to study in a traditional woodworking shop. In addition to creating a blog/photo journal of his experiences, Joe hopes to implement a Fall and Spring Enrichment Camp teaching woodworking for Avon students.
These outstanding educators join other ACSC teachers who have been honored:
Previous Recipients of the Lilly Endowment
2005/Mollie Gregory/AHS/Language Arts
2009/Paul Haiducu (2 times)/AHS/Physics
2011/Gwynn Wills/District/Autism Consultant
Weather Delay/Closure Information
7:00 PM - 8:00 PM PTO Meeting (Nominations for PTO Board)
9:15 AM - 2:00 PM Carney/Furry Field Trip to National Institute for Fitness & Sports
9:15 AM - 2:00 PM Laser/Yambert Field Trip to National Institute for Fitness & Sports
7:00 PM School Board Meeting