Superintendent's Blue Devil Blog: 10/01/21
Hello, Blue Devils! I am trying something new this year on Fridays. I will be giving you some insight into the Superintendent's job, my personal Blue Devil experience, and end with a Covid-19 update.
DAY OFF – Having only taken a couple days off this year, I took Monday off. When I am absent I always designate the acting superintendent in my place when I am unavailable. Dan Carrasco, the Special Services Director, has played this role the last year and continues for this current school year. I want to thank Mr. Carrasco for his added duties in my absence! Yes, as superintendent, I still take phone calls and emails on my day off as there is business that needs to occur every day.
DISTRICT LEADERSHIP TEAM – A team devised of teachers and administrators meet monthly to discuss curriculum, instruction, assessment, and school improvement. This team has representatives from all schools and many departments.
ADMINISTRATIVE TRAINING – Once a month the administrative team consisting of principals, curriculum director, instructional technology director, special services director, and myself meet to work on district-wide and school goals through professional development opportunities. This month we focused on a chapters 5-7 in the book we have read titled, “Learning by Doing: A Handbook for Professional Learning Communities at Work” by Rich and Rebecca Dufour, Robert Eaker, Thomas Many, and Mike Mattos. This training helps drive the professional development we do with staff on early-out Friday’s.
SCHOOL VISITS – I made it to the middle school and high school today to walk the hallways and converse with the administration and secretaries.
FINGER PRINTING – Continue to fingerprint all of our volunteers and new employees. I am thankful for Rob Liedle who helps and makes sure fingerprinting is done as soon as possible so we can utilize our new employees and volunteers. Background checks usually take 7-14 days to come back to us. Lyndi Henson is our fingerprint official for the district. We believe this is vital in making sure we are putting safe individuals into our schools to support the work and learning going on.
TRANSPORTATION MEETING – Met with Katie Gividen to go over scheduling of busses. She has stepped up and is supporting until we get a new transportation director hired.
TRANSPORTATION MEETING – Met with Jim Bowen on transportation needs, busses getting fixed, driver’s concerns, and more.
BOARD MEMBER MEETING – Met with a board member on Covid-19 mitigation strategies.
RAVALLI COUNTY TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE – Attended a meeting with the Ravalli County Clerk and Recorder and representatives from all school districts in the county to discuss transportation. We reviewed changes in bus routes for each school district and voted to approve these changes.
TRANSPORTATION MEETING – Met with Katie Gividen to review needs for some of the buses. Discussed issues and concerns with bussing.
BUILDING AND MAINTENANCE MEETING – Met with Jim Bowen to discuss the scheduling of busses in three different locations for mechanical and electrical problems. Jim and Katie will be collecting information from drivers on all needs for their buses. One area we continue to work on is radio reception in hard to access areas (coulees, valleys, etc…).
CURRICULUM MEETING – Met with Allison Nys on our district’s Continuous Improvement Plan that is due each fall to the Office of Public Instruction.
BOARD MEMBER MEETING – Met with board chairman to discuss agenda items for the October 12 regular board meeting.
MIDDLE SCHOOL ADMIN MEETING – Met with principal to discuss some student and staff concerns.
MTSBA THINK TANK THURSDAY - Montana School Board Association holds live Zoom meetings on Thursdays at noon. The latest changes in policy were discussed today. SB 400 was discussed and its implications on every day education were presented.
MEETING ON HIGH NEEDS STUDENT – Meeting on a student with high needs.
RAVALLI COUNTY HEALTH NURSE CONTACT – On Thursday afternoon’s Maribeth Talia, Corvallis school nurse, and myself have a conference call set up with the Ravalli County Health Nurse as we navigate through Covid.
SCHOOL VISITS – I visited the primary school today and met with principals and talked with the secretaries.
TEACHER MEETING – Met with a teacher to discuss curriculum options.
VOLLEYBALL GAME VS. EAST HELENA – I attended the varsity volleyball game as the girls won in three games versus the East Helena Vigilante’s.
SAFE SCHOOL TRAINING – Each year all staff members must take courses in the areas of blood borne pathogens, the most common health concerns (diabetes, seizures, asthma, allergies, and more), and mandatory reporting of abuse. Staff members must complete a test at the end of each of these courses in order to become certified in that area. I completed these courses today, as well.
COGNIA ELEOT TRAINING – Corvallis School District is Cognia certified. This certification process is difficult to attain and there are only a handful of districts that utilize this certification for all grades, K-12. This four hour training is completed in order for our administration team to observe and evaluate according to set criteria for exceptional teaching according to Cognia. We will have all administrators trained in this process.
HIGH SCHOOL HOMECOMING ASSEMBLY – I was asked to attend and participate in the assembly at the high school. Board Chairman, Mark Fournier, and myself took part in the rope pull against the juniors. Yes, the juniors won! Great competition, spirit, and music was performed by our band.
HOMECOMING PARADE – Parade was phenomenal with all 1,300+ K-12 students either on the sidelines cheering or participating in the parade, along with all staff. There was an extreme amount of pride and school spirit, and much different than last fall during Covid.
EASTSIDE HIGHWAY TRAFFIC OBSERVATION – Continued to monitor traffic and bussing congestion on Eastside Highway at release time.
FOOTBALL GAME VS. STEVENSVILLE – I started the night with a fabulous dinner provided by the FFA. Thank you, FFA members! I then attended and helped supervise the football game versus Stevensville. Unfortunately, we were unsuccessful in the game. A fabulous night for football!
COVID UPDATE: 10/01/21
Total Active Cases as of Today: 11 ( PS=4, MS=4, HS=2, OTHER = 1) -- Total Active Cases Last Friday: 12
Total in Quarantine as of Today: 20 -- Total in Quarantine Last Friday: 29
Our next regularly scheduled school board meeting will be on October 12th. We will start with a special session at 6:00 PM, and the regular board meeting starting at 7:00 PM in the library.
I have an open-door policy, please come visit me at the Central Office.
Jon Konen, Superintendent
“Culture eats strategy for breakfast” -- Peter Drucker
CORVALLIS SCHOOL DISTRICT #1
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