Kiski science program may be more than books
By Brian C. Rittmeyer
Published: Thursday, March 14, 2013, 12:31 a.m.
Updated: Thursday, March 14, 2013
Netbooks and Chromebooks would come along with proposed new science textbooks at Kiski Area High School.
The school board is considering a roughly $245,500 science textbook adoption that includes slightly more than $100,000 in technology items.
Because of the technology component, Superintendent John Meighan said administrators are calling it a “resource adoption,” rather than just textbooks.
In addition to buying class sets of textbooks, the science department's plan includes 240 Chromebooks for about $67,000 and 72 netbooks for about $34,000.
Chromebooks are similar to laptop computers and run Google's Chrome operating system and make use of the Internet. The district is expanding its use of Google as an instructional tool.
Their advantages are said to include giving students access to their documents from anywhere at anytime; that they do not have the maintenance of log-in issues of a laptop or desktop computer; do not require software updates; and have applications directly related to the content being studied.
Using the technology is touted as cost-effective, with administrators saying that putting a textbook in every student's hand is typically more expensive than a device at every desk.
In addition, the school board is considering buying elementary math textbooks at a cost of about $238,000.
The board will vote on buying the textbooks at its meeting on Monday.
Work at Kiski Area's new upper elementary school is close to being on schedule, a representative of Massaro Construction Management Services told the board.
The district is expanding the former North Washington Elementary School to house all of the district's fifth- and sixth-grade students.
Work on the new addition has fallen about a week behind. It should not take long to make up, the Massaro representative said.
Workers have fallen a couple of weeks behind on the existing building, the Massaro representative said.
The new school is expected to open for the 2013-14 school year.
District architect Jay Johnston said only a few minor items remain to be resolved on a classroom addition at Mamont Elementary.
The district is continuing to get state approval for renovations at Vandergrift Elementary. The district expects to begin seeking bids in April and expects construction to start soon after students leave for summer recess in June.
The school board Monday will vote to accept the retirement resignations of six teachers.
Teachers retiring at the end of this school year are elementary teachers Carla Eilenfeld, Marifrances Kiebler, and Doreen Hall; Daniel Best, technology education; Thomas Schaeffer, business; and Debra Henninger, vocal music.
The board had previously accepted the retirements of five teachers, for a total of 11. There had been a March 1 deadline for teachers to tender retirement resignations, Meighan said.
Meighan said four of the 11 positions, all elementary teachers, will not be replaced.
The board will also vote to accept the resignations of Ellen Toy, girls' junior high head volleyball coach; Maggie Jones, girls' junior high head softball; and Harry Rideout Jr., head basketball coach.
Jones is in line to replace Toy.
Brian C. Rittmeyer is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-226-4701 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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