Superintendent's Message


John Stoddard
Superintendent

September 2018

 

It’s been a busy few weeks since the official kick-off of the 2018-2019 School Year. Students and teachers are both back into their formal classroom routines, and the Berkshire Schools leadership will keep the community posted with important updates throughout the year. Below, you will find some important pieces of information on things taking place in our District.

This email will be circulated to the community to provide timely updates on important, strategic matters in the District. For day-to-day updates, news stories and other activities, I encourage you always to visit the website and take advantage of the information posted there.

The P.R.I.M.E. Committee met with more than 50 individuals in attendance to press forward with the exciting next steps for the PreK-12 construction process. Representatives from BSHM Architects, who have been contracted to design the building, led the 90-minute community input session and offered a summary of the School Planning Concepts from which they will draw detailed community feedback over the next several months. Some of those planning concepts included discussion about Security, Maximum Collaboration for learning, Wayfinding for students, Flexibility, Operations, Diversity, Health and Sustainability. After elaborating on each of the topics, the floor was opened to questions, for the expressed purpose of obtaining community feedback. Berkshire’s new PreK-12 Facility is intended to become the new hub of the community for the future and will be constructed on the Kent State University-Geauga Campus, the atrium of which, served as the location for this particular community meeting. More community engagement sessions are planned over the coming weeks and months. Architects hope to use these sessions to gather more detailed input and refined feedback, so that by year’s end, a solid footprint of the building and campus layout can be envisioned and presented. The Berkshire Schools will keep you posted on coming meetings and more developments.

In an effort to remain on the cutting edge of professional development, select teachers at all three District buildings recently participated in a Districtwide training initiative to help better instruct and train our students with future learning capabilities.  Delivered, in part, by representatives from the Inventionland Institute, which creates products and educational programs that promote project-based learning, teachers were instructed on how to incorporate Makerspace technology into classroom learning in the future.  Makerspace technology includes 3-D printers, a laser etcher and printer, vinyl printer and 3-D carving machines, and is available at all three district buildings. Funding for this cutting-edge technology was made possible by Key Bank Foundation, to whom the Berkshire Local Schools expresses its deepest gratitude.  The Makerspace will give teachers the opportunity to provide hands-on learning experiences that promote creativity, inquiry and engage students of all ability levels. 

Once again, thank you for your continued support of the Berkshire Local Schools. Be sure to stay posted on information on the District website, and as always:

GO BADGERS!

John Stoddard

Superintendent of Schools

 


9/17/2018


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