Koosharem Elementary School Lead Teacher Wesley Torgersen noted that the current student count at Koosharem Elementary is 48, which is a large jump compared to previous years. Having a variety of grades in such a small school has its challenges but it provides an opportunity to be innovative in meeting the needs of the staff and students.
Torgersen said that they rely on iReady and RISE test scores from the beginning, middle and end of the year to make changes and improvements as they teach the essential standards. He said that the interventions program at the school has helped those students who struggle or need extra practice. The school was able to hire a partial aide to help with the program and he is pleased with the results. “It has been a special experience to work with those students who need extra one-on-one help,” said Torgersen.
The school has also had some improvements including new risers for the stage purchased by the PTA; Trustland funds were used to purchase new books for the library, and new chrome books were purchased using Technology Leeway funds.
To improve character education, each Wednesday the students participate in a flag ceremony and activity. The staff picks a theme for the month and each week the students get to participate in an activity or a game that is centered around the selected monthly theme. The students have enjoyed this new program and look forward to participating each week.
The entire school is working together to improve attendance. Each month the class with the best attendance is awarded a trophy for the month.
“The students have really enjoyed participating in the competition and it has improved our attendance rates in the school,” said Torgersen.
Superintendent Cade Douglas complimented Torgersen and his staff for their hard work and commitment to fostering a culture of innovation and their willingness to think outside the box when trying new things.
In other business, Douglas showed an example of the new carousel digital signage being used by all secondary schools to share positive things going on throughout the district and improve communication with students and the public.
Teachers and staff have been encouraged to use the hashtag #seviersdstrong to show the good things going on in their school and classrooms. He said the district website will now show a direct feed from Facebook, Twitter and anything linked to the #seviersdstrong hashtag.
“I am thrilled to see the great things going on throughout the district and invite everyone to follow us on social media,” said Douglas.
The board also approved the following individuals for employment — Brandi Johnson, Erin Barrier and Tori Ray as a special needs paraprofessional, Tara Rowley as an instructional assistant and Ashley Tuttle as a 1.0 FTE teacher for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year, all Monroe elementary; Robert Widdows as a custodian and Karen Edwards as a special needs paraprofessional, both South Sevier High; Melissa Udy as an instructional assistant at Pahvant Elementary; Vanessa Ainge as child nutrition assistant and Christal Anderson as an instructional assistant for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year, both Richfield High; Joli Johanson as the school climate coordinator at Sevier School District; Dallas Monroe as an instructional assistant – special ed. – moderate/severe at Richfield Preschool; Cynthia Key as a child nutrition assistant at North Sevier High, and jonathon Neidigh as a custodian at Ashman elementary.
Assistant Superintendent Mike Willes gave an update on the district’s professional development day, hosted Jan. 2. George Couros was the keynote speaker, along with 40 other presenters. He said the feedback survey shows positive reviews.
Business Administrator Chad Lloyd gave an update on the upcoming fee schedule and an overview on the next steps to begin the South Sevier Middle School project.