News and Tribune

July 3, 2013

MELIN: Important information for students, parents

By ANDREW MELIN
Guest columnist

The Greater Clark County Schools’ board of trustees and staff hope your summer is going well. With the 2013-14 school year beginning Aug. 1, we want to provide you with some important information. 

Registration for the 2013-14 school year is open and the online registration link is available by visiting the district’s website at www.gcs.k12.in.us. It is imperative that parents register their children online as soon as possible. There will be no scheduled registration process at school sites prior to the start of this school year. 

In addition, the district’s staffing is based on enrollment, so I encourage you to take a few moments to complete this process. It is also important for parents to realize registration fees are not due when registering online, and can be paid at anytime up until the start of next school year. 

It is also important that your child is registered so that he/she may attend one of the district’s upcoming One-to-One Initiative rollout events. The district’s technology department is busy preparing to distribute 8,000 Samsung Chromebook laptop computers to students in grades three through 12. One-to-One Initiative events will be held at Charlestown High School on July 18 and Jeffersonville High School on July 22 and July 23. At these events, students will receive their Chromebook, as well as information about the one-to-one initiative, computer policies and expectations, insurance information and all necessary paperwork will be signed. Parents and students must attend the rollout night specified for the school. Please see the list below.

• Thursday, July 18 at Charlestown High School — All Charlestown schools and New Washington schools.

• Monday, July 22 at Jeffersonville High School — Bridgepoint Elementary, Maple Elementary, Riverside Elementary, Utica Elementary, Parkview Middle School and Jeffersonville High School juniors and 

seniors.

• Tuesday, July 23 at Jeffersonville High School — Northaven Elementary, Parkwood Elementary, Spring Hill Elementary, Thomas Jefferson Elementary, Wilson Elementary, River Valley Middle School, Clark County Middle/High School and Jeffersonville High School freshmen and sophomores.

Information will be presented in two-hour sessions at the events beginning from noon until 8 p.m. Parents and students must report at the beginning of a session time and plan to stay the full two hours. Parents with students in different grade levels can choose to attend one session time that best fits their schedule. Session times are:

• noon to 2:00 p.m. (elementary)

• 1 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. (middle)

• 2 to 4 p.m. (high)

• 4 to 6 p.m. (elementary)

• 5 to 7 p.m. (middle)

• 6 to 8 p.m. (high)

It’s imperative for students and parents to attend their school’s specified rollout night. Implementation of the one-to-one initiative will allow our students to acquire the necessary 21st century proficiencies to be prepared for college and careers.

Our strategic plan that was board approved last spring goes into full effect this school year. Our vision is to become nationally recognized as a premier provider of education by serving as the bridge connecting stakeholders to ensure all students are college and career ready, and our mission is for stakeholders to give 100 percent effort in meeting the academic and behavioral needs of each student, ensuring acceptance to a post-secondary opportunity.

In order to assure our students are college and career ready, we will be continuing the implementation of our IMPACT program, which provides individualized enrichment for students in terms of their reading skills and behavior. We will also implement a K-12 literacy framework that is designed to enhance our students’ reading and writing skills at all grade levels and in all subject areas. 

In order to begin orienting our students to potential post-secondary opportunities, all sixth and ninth graders will take a careers course next school year. The purpose of the class is to provide students with information that will help them better determine the education/training necessary to meet their career goals. 

We also are making a more significant investment into a program called Project Lead The Way. This is a nationally recognized program that offers students project-based learning opportunities in engineering and/or biomedicine. All seventh-graders will be introduced to the biomedical aspect of the program by taking a course called Medical Detectives, while all eighth graders will be introduced to the engineering component by taking a course called Gateway to Technology. High school students will have the opportunity to take coursework in the engineering and/or biomedical pathways. 

Over the past year, our middle schools began the process of redesigning themselves to better meet the needs of our students, and those changes take effect this school year. In addition to the Project Lead The Way and careers courses, middle school students will have opportunities to take more advanced level math and will have more elective opportunities. 

It is an exciting time to be part of the Greater Clark County Schools. We are dedicated to provide our students with the best education possible to assure they reach their potential and are accepted to post-secondary opportunities. Enjoy the rest of your summer break. I look forward to seeing you on Thursday, Aug. 1, to begin the 2013-14 school year. 

— Dr. Andrew Melin is superintendent of Greater Clark County Schools. Reach him by email at amelin@gcs.k12.in.us