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Pleasant Valley teachers and students love Renaissance Responders

Published November 24. 2010 05:00PM

Ms. Roxanne Scott and Ms. Jenna Wernett, presented a demonstration to the Pleasant Valley School District board of directors of how Renaissance Responders are helping to generate a lot of excitement in their PV Middle School classrooms.

The hand-held Responder displays questions and responses, much like text entry on a cell phone with short answer functionality, great for quizzes in most subjects, including math. Large, LCD screen clearly displays questions and answer choices. It's ideal for one-hand-use and it frees other hand for writing.

The teachers gave the board a quiz and the members answered using the responders. The teachers tracked how many of the "students" completed the quiz, how many were still working on it. The responder recorded how many each one got right/wrong and gave the "student" a grade.

Both teachers said the students love using the responders and become actively engaged in the learning process. The teachers like it because they receive instant student feedback and can check their progress on the main computer. It helps target instruction more effectively to individual students, resulting in effective, one-to-one, personal teaching moments.

The board was very impressed with the Responder.

Ms. Scott said, "You can see the excitement it generated with you. That excitement is what we see in the classroom."

Mr. Kenneth Newman gave a report on the PSSA-Modified assessment for math, which is an alternate assessment based upon modified academic achievement standards of Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) students.

"The results showed that the efforts of our students and their teachers and administrators were very successful. Our students that took the PSSA-M in math outperformed the state of PA in nearly every category in every grade, 4-8 and 11, on the PSSA-M. Additionally the IEP subgroup met AYP for math at every level across the district. It showed that 66 percent are proficient in comparison to the state wide 44 percent," he said.

Dr. Douglas Arnold, PVSD superintendent, reported:

*current enrollment is at 6,480

*received a 'thank you' from student Jason Kisch to John DeVivo for bringing a Billy Jones concert to the school.

*to date $2,800 has been donated for new score boards in old gym

*Mr. Patrick donated several items of new clothes in compliance with PV's dress code for needy students

*Mr. and Mrs. Nathaniel Hoffner brought a 263-pound pumpkin for Chestnuthill Elementary outdoor display

*$1,940 has been donated for the weight room

*Dec. 4, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. there will be Santa Luncheon at PVI cafeteria

*Dec. 16 there will be a reception for past superintendents and school board members at 5 p.m. in celebration of PV's 50th anniversary in the high school cafeteria

*$1,194 has been collected for the Children's Tumor Foundation through PV's Denim Day

The Personnel and General Administration report was approved but with two "No" votes, one from Tom Murphy and one from Harvey Frable.

The district approved hiring of personnel:

*Jenine Havens replacing Nannette Gower and Angela Kibler replacing Mildred Maldonado as monitors at $8.79 an hour

*Joann Mastronardi from temporary to regular monitor at PVHS, a replacement position for Dolores Warnken

*Jacqueline Dumas, custodian, replacing Robert Krock at PVHS

*Substitutes-Ethel Acevedo, Huayang Cerbone, Christina Paulin, Catherine Schaffner, paraprofessional associates; Peggyann Corriveau, secretary; Kim Lutz, custodian/maintenance; Shannon Reagle, cafeteria/custodian; Angela Kibler, Mary Provinciali, Susan Springer as monitors.

*Amended transfer of Carl Smith, custodian, from PVE to PVHS

*Jessica Farkas, PVE grade 3 as long-term substitute teacher for Jessica Henninger at annual salary of $39,200 Nov. 5 to conclusion of 2010-2011 school year

*Ryan Easterday, long-term grade 5 substitute teacher for Joelene Douglas at annual salary of $39,200, Dec. 1 to conclusion of 2010-2011 school year; Dawn Heimerle, substitute in all areas.

*Jill Pierson, long-term substitute teacher for Julie Tonkay at annual salary of $39,200 from Nov. 30 to conclusion of 2010-2011 school year

*Renee Zepeda, English teacher substitute.

The district approved resignation of:

*Susan Featro, PVMS and PVI teacher, effective Dec. 20, 2010 or sooner, depending upon release; Denise Mascal, PVI paraprofessional associate, effective Nov. 19, 2010; Debra Saurman, PVE paraprofessional associate, effective Nov. 18, 2010; Jacqueline Dumas as PVI monitor, effective Nov. 30, 2010; Mary Provinciali from cafeteria worker, effective Nov. 17, 2010; and Susan Springer, PVHS temporary monitor, effective Nov. 9, 2010 but wishes to be placed on substitute list for monitor.

Approval was granted:

*to contract with Carbon/Monroe/Pike Drug and Alcohol Commission to provide Drug and Alcohol Prevention/Intervention services for school year 2010-2011 for $17,500

*June Pepe as Chestnuthill Elementary parent volunteer

*2010-2011 spring assistant coaching positions of track and field of Drew Davis, varsity and Matt Frable for junior varsity

*2010-2011 cocurricular adviser positions of Brad Rogers for assistant mock trial coach

*volunteer coaching positions of Girls' basketball-Sarah Adams and Boys' basketball-Derek Strohl

PVI's principal, Mr. James Storm reported that 2,400 food items were collected at the school for Pleasant Valley Ecumenical Network.

Ms. Penny Derr, principal of PVE said that only four days into collecting, they have 320 toys for Toys for Tots and 200 food items for PVEN and $1,700 in cash for needy families in the community. The school will be conducting a clothing swap of the district's standardized dress code items on Dec. 4 from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. They will also be offering coats and boots.

Mr. Drake, principal of PVMS said that the Student Council raised about $1,100 for Relay For Life at the spaghetti dinner they served before the school's musical, "Anchors Aweigh."

Susan Kresge, school board president, said she was very heartened in hearing about all the great community service projects the district's schools and students participate in. She believes it is important for the students to learn about the value of community service.

Mr. Robert Hines reported that there were 112 students registered in the Cyber School as of Nov. 18.

The board approved the following contracts:

*$617 (no increase) for CSI-Preventative Maintenance annual agreement for PVHS, Dec. 1, 2010-Nov. 30-2011

*$1,955.50 to Tams-Witmark Music Library, Inc. for licensing fee, royalty and rental fee, security deposits and scripts for PVHS production of "Hello, Dolly!"

*$2,392 to Simplex Grinnell for purchase and installation of one LCD Fire Alarm Annunciator, material and labor at PVI

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