Dublin Villager

From the Superintendent's Desk

Community dialogue key to evolving education

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I would like to take this opportunity to thank the members of the Dublin community for a wonderful first year in Dublin City Schools.

I am truly honored to be the superintendent of one of Ohio's premier school districts.

The year has flown by and the welcome the Hoadley family has received from parents, staff and community members has been truly humbling and we will always appreciate our first year in Dublin City Schools.

As promised, I spent my first year in Dublin City Schools listening, learning and being visible in the community.

The community coffees we have hosted have been a great tool for meeting this goal and establishing a true partnership with our public.

As we move into the 2014-15 school year in August, we will be shifting the location of conversations to a more digital platform.

While face-to-face conversations will always be part of my leadership style, we will also begin using communication tools such as podcasts and webinars to continue the community dialogue about what does a 21st century education look like in our district?

The quality of instruction our students receive is the single most important aspect of our ability to provide a world-class education.

If we are able to provide foundational, world-class instruction, our students will rapidly grow from an academic standpoint.

One example is the new K-5 literacy and numeracy coaching programs we are implementing in our elementary schools.

Without adding positions, we will have literacy and numeracy coaches in our elementary schools beginning in the fall. By reallocating current resources, these coaches will help ensure all students receive world-class instruction in literacy and numeracy.

We will continue to provide opportunities for students while working hard to control costs.

More blended learning opportunities are part of my vision of the direction our district needs to move in the next few years.

Blended learning courses offer a combination of seat time and online learning for students. Chinese I is being taught from the Dublin Technology Center on Coffman Road on Mondays and Fridays.

The teacher moves to each high school for in-person instruction on the other days of the week. This model allows us to offer our students the opportunity to take a course we could otherwise not afford to offer from a staffing perspective.

Blended learning with a focus on world-class instruction in literacy and numeracy can serve as a foundation to take this already great district to the next level.

Success in both of these areas can be tied directly to the district's technology, another high priority for us heading into the 2014-15 school year.

Success with technology means more than ensuring the latest equipment is in our classrooms. It also means are teachers are well trained on the equipment and are skilled at integrating 21st century learning tools into their lessons plan.

Technology cannot be an event, or special pull out lesson. It must be a valuable tool in the educational toolbox.

Our other top priority for next school year is addressing the enrollment growth challenges our district is currently facing.

May 27, the district's planning department presented three options for addressing the enrollment challenges we are facing at the elementary level at this time.

I invite you to view the presentation at www.dublinschools. net and send us your thoughts at info@dublinschools.net.

Option one involves moving a portion of the Riverside Elementary School attendance area to Indian Run Elementary School and a portion of the Indian Run attendance area to Bailey Elementary School.

This plan is a temporary fix and would only help Riverside, our most severely overcrowded elementary school.

Option two involves building "Elementary 13" on Bright Road. A new school would require about $1.9-million in additional, annual operating costs.

This option would result in widespread redistricting, take about two-years to complete, and only addresses elementary level enrollment growth concerns.

Option three is the most economically prudent option and would greatly minimize redistricting. Option three would re-purpose the $14.5 million voters approved in 2008 for the construction of Elementary 13.

Instead of building a new school, and incurring the accompanying annual operating costs, we could construct additions to five or six elementary schools, Jerome High School and possibly Grizzell Middle School.

The additions could be constructed in a shorter time frame than building a new school.

This option saves the significant annual operating costs of a new school, minimizes redistricting and allows us to preserve the neighborhood school concept.

Option three also has the potential to resolve districtwide student housing needs at all levels for several years.

Please drop us an email and let us know your thoughts on these options. We will continue taking your feedback as we work through this process.

Thank you again for making the Hoadleys feel welcome.

We hope to be here for many years and I look forward to continuing the collaborative conversation we have begun about the future of Dublin City Schools.

Dublin City School District Superintendent Todd Hoadley, Ph.D., submitted the From the Superintendent's Desk column.

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