Dear Middle School Families,
As a follow up to the communication sent to middle school families regarding alignment of the middle school schedule (click here to read), we will be continuing this dialogue at tonight's Education Committee Board Meeting. [Please note that due to the winter storm, tonight's Board meeting may be impacted. A decision regarding after-school and evening activities will be communicated to families via email and posted on the District website.]
The District will be providing a series of opportunities for public review and comment on this topic, including:
- Monday, March 13 -- Board of School Directors Education Committee meeting (8:00 PM, Board Room, LMSD Administration Building)
- Wednesday, March 15 -- Ask the Superintendent (8:30 AM, Board Room, LMSD Administration Building)
- Wednesday, March 15 – Welsh Valley Middle School Scheduling Discussion and Q & A with Principal Chris Hall (7:00 PM, Welsh Valley Middle School Library)
- Thursday, March 16 – Bala Cynwyd Middle School Scheduling Discussion and Q & A with Principal Jason Potten (7:00 PM, Bala Cynwyd Middle School Auditorium)
- Monday, March 20 – Board of School Directors Regular Business Board meeting (8:00 PM, Board Room, LMSD Administration Building)
- Wednesday, April 5 -- Curriculum Committee of the Board meeting (8:30 AM, Board Room, LMSD Administration Building)
- Monday, April 17 – Board of School Directors Education Committee meeting (8:00 PM, Board Room, LMSD Administration Building)
A final recommendation on the middle school schedule will be made at the April 17 Board of School Directors Education Committee meeting.
We encourage participation and engagement throughout these sessions, but also encourage families with questions and comments to attend the meetings hosted by the principals at their respective middle schools. These sessions will be conversational and will allow for discussion specific to each school.
The Board is aware of questions that are circulating in the community about middle school schedule alignment and encourages community members to review complete information after it is shared at Monday's presentation and posted on the District website, along with a list of answers to Frequently Asked Questions.
Among the misconceptions that we would like to clarify immediately:
- The proposed schedule does not reduce the daily time allotted to personal development classes (or "specials"). Students will continue to have two periods of specials every day.
- Instructional time is not being shifted away from specials time to core content time.
- The proposal ensures that every student has a balanced exposure to all specials, but introduces increased student choice for 7th and 8th graders to pursue some specials more deeply.
- This process is driven by the Strategic Plan and to move toward greater equity across the district. More student choice and opportunities for enrichment and support daily are aspects of our Strategic Plan to move toward more student-driven schools.
- Supports for students are not being reduced. The proposed schedule allows for greater flexibility with scheduling supports for gifted and/or IEP students. The level of appropriate support has always been determined on an individual basis; this will continue.
The Board will continue to take comments on this topic via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your consideration and ongoing, valuable feedback.
Dr. Scott Eveslage