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Marengo BOE receives update on school programs, training

K12 Instructional Leader Cathy Seale shared the school board report with the Marengo County Board of Education on Sept. 26.

The district’s educator effectiveness training has been completed at all three schools as of Sept. 30. Once the teachers have undergone self-assessments and development professional learning plans with the principals, the observation process will begin.

Seale said all teachers will have at least one formal observation with feedback per year, but can have up to three depending on tenure or if they have been identified as needing additional support.

Student training for the district’s peer helper program took place at the central office in Linden on Oct. 4. Students submitted applications to be a peer helper, and those who were accepted learned to identify and address bullying.

Seale said it acts similar to a mentoring program, and peer helpers exist in grades 5-10.

“By the time they’re in 11th grade, think of how strong they’ll be,” Seale said about 5th graders who will be able to take advantage of a full six years of peer helper training.

Three teachers from the district were chosen to participate in Kagan-Engagement Cooperative Learning Training. The teachers have already gone through two days of training, and have three more days of training left before the program is complete.

The participating teachers were Chelsea Morgan from A.L. Johnson High School, Cressida Cowan from Marengo High School and Cathy Black from Sweet Water High School.

They will teach their new skills to other teachers at their schools. The University of West Alabama is taking care of the $2,000 cost for each teacher’s training.

Other items discussed include:

• SWHS was selected by the Alabama Reading Initiative to host a learning lab for other principals in the state. It was one of seven schools selected statewide. The visiting principals saw classrooms and observed a data meeting.

• ALJ teachers Tammy Kennedy and Wendy Sammons were honored by the Metis Leadership Group for being key leaders in implementing behaviors that are involved the MLG’s Culture of Achievement program.

• Eighth-graders in the district are participating in Shelton State Community College’s World of Works.

• Superintendent Luther Hallmark announced that ALJ teacher Lynn Smith was asked to serve on the Governing Board of the UA/UWA In-Service Education Center.

Items approved by the board include:

• the loan of a vehicle for driver’s education at no charge to the district form Doc’s Chevrolet Buick GMC in Thomasville.

• Jacqueline Walker as substitute bus driver.

• 2019-2020 Alabama Trust for Boards of Education renewal for errors and omissions.

• 2019-2020 Instructional Paraprofessional Contract

• Renting a bus to University Charter School for $1.50 per mile. The charter school will supply their own bus driver.

• Boardmembers Lynda Joiner as delegate and Rayvell Smith as vice-delegate for 2019 Alabama Education Association Delegate Assembly.

• Sheila Dortch as Alabama Association of School Boards District Director for District 2.

The next Marengo County Board of Education meeting will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 22 at 4 p.m. in the second-floor board room of the Marengo County Office Building in Linden.

(This article originally appeared in the Wednesday, October 9 issue of the Demopolis Times.)