The Ferndale Board of Education met Monday night to consider a full agenda of items. Here are some highlights from the meeting:
Contracts approved for Taft school resource officer, new high school principal
The board approved a contract for a full-time school resource officer at Taft Education Center. The school district will pay for 75 percent of the cost with the city of Ferndale paying the other 25 percent. Ferndale City Council approved the hire at its last meeting.
The district began discussing hiring an officer following the Dec. 8 shooting of a student outside the school. School resource officers perform three roles: law enforcement officer, law-related counselor and law-related education teacher. A school resource officer is already in place at Ferndale High School.
The contract begins April 1. A laid-off Ferndale police officer is expected to be called back to fill the position.
A contract for Lisa Williams to take over as principal of Ferndale High School was approved Monday night. She will replace Herb Ivory, who is retiring at the end of this school year. Williams has been serving as assistant principal at FHS and has been with the Ferndale Public Schools since 2007.
Kennedy multi-age program eliminated
Barb Evoe, director of curriculum and instruction, presented information on the elimination of the multi-age magnet program at John F. Kennedy School.
John F. Kennedy School offers a K-6 elementary school format with two magnet programs – a multi-age primary instructional format and an open-classroom program that emphasizes self-directed learning and strong parent involvement.
The two programs will transition into one, with the multi-age program phasing out and parents who do not want their child to transition into the open-classroom program having the choice to consider switching to Roosevelt or Coolidge.
Content expectations have increased and enrollment in the program has gone down, Evoe said. Eliminating the program will provide increased opportunities to maximize learning, she said.
A parent meeting will be scheduled soon to discuss the transition.
Ferndale Digital High School approved
The board also approved a new program for Taft Education Center called Ferndale Digital High School. The "personalized and flexible" e-high school, which will replace the current alternative high school program, will provide individualized content delivered through online learning modules with a support component offered in-person at Taft via learning tables, and each student being assigned to a case manager.
Wrap-around support services will also be offered, including representatives from services such as Department of Human Services, food assistance, Medicaid, mental health services and more offered directly in a specified room in the Taft building.
Renee Heard, school improvement specialist with Ferndale Schools, presented a detailed presentation on the proposed program and will manage the project. It is expected to go into effect for the upcoming school year.
Stay tuned to Ferndale Patch for more in-depth articles on these issues.