Stoltz gives update on online learning

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

CLOVERDALE -- Going through its agenda in a half-hour session Monday evening, the Cloverdale School Board heard an update concerning online learning.

Cloverdale High School Principal Sonny Stoltz spoke on the trends of students who use the Edmentum Learning Environment program (formerly known as Plato), as well at its overall purpose.

“We have a purpose to help students not get behind and graduate on time,” Soltz began, saying that online learning is usually made up of older students. More specifically, he said 37 seniors have taken online courses for different reasons.

Stoltz said there are two scenarios in which Edmentum is used. The most ideal is for credit recovery, where students make up credits in order to graduate. The other is for credit accrual, where students elect to take these courses.

Stolz cautioned that getting from Point A to Point B and graduating should be a “straight line.” However, some students may go the online route in order to pick up a class which might not fit into their schedule.

Stoltz provided an example with keeping up in foreign languages, where teachers may retire in the near future. In general, online might also be an option if a student is found to struggle with classroom instruction.

Edmentum offers 54 core classes, as well as career and technical education (CTE) courses. This falls in line with Stoltz relating that students might not be able to attend outside training such as Area 30 without certain fulfillments.

Michael Nees monitors Edmentum, but Stoltz added that a group of teachers, including himself, “mentor” students who are working to complete their requirements.

Responding to a question about the cost of the program, Superintendent Greg Linton said Edmentum was less than $10,000, though he provided that it was $7,500 a year at one point.

The board also approved a change to the 2020-21 school calendar to replace four built-in snow days with eLearning. This means the start day for students will be moved up to Wednesday, Aug. 12.

Linton cited a high participation rate in two eLarning training days in December, as well as a consensus of school administration that they are no longer needed.

The board approved the adoption of eLearning last October.

In other business, the board also approved the Snails to Trail summer program.

The board also approved the following personnel report:

• Employment: Donald Gibson - substitute bus driver; and Angel Frederick - part-time CES/CMS cafeteria staff;

• Retirement: Lillian Turner - CMS custodian.

The board also approved the addition of a bus aide position, due to small children making up one bus in particular.

The board also recognized Cloverdale’s Students of the Month. They were second-grader Memphis Baker, sixth-grader Kane Gentry and freshman Jaidyn Helton.

Board member JaceAnn Troutt was absent from Monday’s meeting.

The next meeting of the Cloverdale School Board is scheduled for Monday, March 9 in the Arthur L. Johnson Administration Center near Cloverdale High School.

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