COLDWATER, MI (WTVB) – It was a packed PAC meeting last night at Legg Middle School in Coldwater. The school district’s Parent Advisory Council session had a strong turnout of parents, teachers and administrators as they heard Coldwater Superintendent of Schools Dr. Tina Kerr outline the district’s just unveiled Academics First Initiative. It’s a plan designed to spark a rapid turnaround to improve learning, test scores and graduation rates. It was introduced a week ago yesterday at a special Coldwater School Board meeting. A key ingredient in the plan will see grade leveling in the district’s elementary schools beginning next fall. Max Larsen Elementary is the biggest building and it will include Young Fives through First Grade. They will be moving the Young Fives out of Lincoln Elementary to Larsen to be with the kindergarten teachers. Jefferson will be the elementary for second and third graders while there’ll be no change at Lakeland.
Kerr said grade leveling will allow for another major component of the Academics First Initiative, that being weekly teacher collaboration period which allow for 90-minutes a week for instructors to all get together as a team after school in their buildings to talk about data and student achievement. Kerr said grade leveling won’t have a negative impact on the favorable size of student numbers in the classrooms. She took a number of questions about bussing schedules for next fall and Kerr said they’re still in the works with an outside firm consulting the district on what’s the best way to go.
The next Coldwater PAC meeting is scheduled for Tuesday April 16th when more information on the Academics First Initiative will be on the agenda.