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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Engineering leads way for North Putnam youth

Saturday, February 24, 2007

High school engineering classes designed a picture for the North Putnam School Board as to what is going right with the North Putnam High School at Thursday's meeting

High School Technology teacher Dave Pasch informed the board that engineering courses through Project Lead the Way not only help prepare students for college, but future career opportunities.

Project Lead the Way is a national partnership program between public schools, colleges and the private sector that work together to address the need for highly skilled technical workers

Pasch, who has been teaching for 16 years, believes that Project Lead the Way is the best curriculum because it ties together all of the school's core subjects. It also allows students to explore technological careers.

To better explain the program and the courses the students learn, Pasch showed the board, along with several other audience members, a video. In this video, the board members learned all about the different courses students take while involved in the program.

Currently, Pasch is teaching a course called Intro to Engineering which allows the students to solve problems, to communicate and articulate the solution and to use the same problem solving solution that professional engineers use. The school is looking at integrating Principles of Engineering into the curriculum for next year.

Pasch also provided the board with a demonstration on the computer program the students use and will see when they attend college.

Students involved in this program learn the introductory courses as freshmen and sophomores, and then go onto Area 30 where they begin to work with robotics.

Meanwhile, the board heard about bus driver safety issue complaints from four parents. These parents, along 21 others who have signed a petition, are concerned about the safety of their students as they travel to and from school.

Stacy Mazur, the mother of two North Putnam students, told the Banner Graphic on Friday that this has been an ongoing problem since the beginning of the school year. She also said the parents were told to follow the chain of command when reporting an incident, and they did but they were not receiving any answers. According Mazur, the parents are becoming frustrated because they do not know where else to go, and they fear that nothing will be done until something happens.

April Land, a mother of an eighth-grade student, informed the board during the meeting that it took two to three weeks to receive a phone call from somebody after she made the first call about the driver. She also said that when she calls the superintendent's office she never receives a response back.

Board President Dale McGaughey told the four parents attending the meeting that direct personnel issues are handled during executive sessions. He also told them that they can make a request for a executive session, but that does not mean they will receive one.

In response to Land's statement, Supt. Murray Pride told the BannerGraphic that his office was not in the practice of not returning phone calls.

In other business, the board:

  • Learned about two students who received certificates of recognition for different achievements. Those two students were Megan Peterson who received a first place rating in the state solo/ensemble competition and Sandy Saint Victor who received the MLK Day Spirit Awards.

  • Learned that Bainbridge Elementary teachers Judy Proctor and Kristie Hankins were inducted into the National Honor Roll of Outstanding American Teachers.

  • Learned that the Old National Trail Interlocal Agreement has been scheduled onto the March agenda for the Indiana State Department of Education. If the department approves the agreement, it will then move onto the Attorney General's office.

  • Learned that City Securities was in the process of pricing the bonds in the area of $89,000 to $90,000.

  • Approved the softball team selling cookie dough from March 5-9 and the band parents selling Gray Brothers Pies after the cookie dough sales to the end of the month.

  • Approved the wrestling clinic for first through fifth graders on March 5-9 from 5:30-7 p.m. in the high school/middle school commons area.

  • Approved the resignation of athletic trainer Brandon McGaughey and Old National Trail instructional assistants Anita Cole, Nicole Cradick and Melissa Green. The board also approved the transfer of Julie Harbison from the middle school to the high school, the professional growth leave requests from Kay Grove, Alan Zerkel, Jeannine Peterson, Vicki Sanders and Charity Pankratz and Bainbridge Elementary teacher Cathy Tesmer's adoption leave of absence request.

  • Approved the hiring of Kim Bagenhart and Tamara Newlin as high school instructional assistants, Ann Hazelgrove as a middle school instructional assistant, Marilyn McCollough as a Roachdale Elementary instructional assistant, Andy Beck as a high school volunteer FFA Judging Coach, Chet Clodfelter as a middles school assistant boys track coach, Ed Foltz as a middle school assistant wrestling coach and Courtney Brock as a high school volunteer assistant girls track coach.

    The board meets regularly every third Thursday of the month at the school corporation building at 7 p.m.

    The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, March 15. This meeting is open to the public.

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