Let me be the first to welcome our students back from a much deserved summer vacation to the start of this new school year. Last year there was much discussion about the appropriateness of the PARCC testing that our students in grades 3-12 were expected to take. This even led to some parents having their students “opt-out” of the assessments. These concerns were heard loud and clear by our state legislature as Ohio has left the PARCC tests and revamped the testing environment for this year. Without getting into too many details, the testing environment and format are now more familiar as they resemble what your student experienced when they took the OAA and OGT tests.
Providing the best educational opportunity as possible is always the main goal of our district. For that reason, 2 new programs are being implemented at the secondary buildings this year. The first is College Credit Plus. Although created by the State Legislature to replace Post-Secondary Enrollment Options, or PSEO, New London adopted a more progressive approach to the program. In partnering with Lorain County Community College, we are able to offer many LCCC approved courses here on campus, allowing our students to earn up to an associates degree while in high school, yet not missing out on the high school experience. We are one of only a few districts in our region to take this approach, as most have partnered with regional colleges and universities to have their students complete the coursework either online or on the university campus.
The second new program for our secondary students is our new digital academy. Titled the New London Digital Academy, students enrolled in this program receive 100% of their curriculum through online modules, moving at their pace; creating a very individualized learning environment. Other schools in our area have tried this approach, but they missed out on one of the keys to successful learning: the support of dedicated staff to guide the student. Utilizing the old preschool, students enrolled in the NLDA can attend all day, 3 days a week and receive one to one tutoring in the courses they are taking. In addition, students that do not attend can take advantage of drop in hours to receive the support that they cannot receive from other programs. Our goal is to create an environment where all students can learn and have every student receive a diploma from New London Local Schools.
In the elementary, we are expanding our summer “Boost” Program, after school reading and math intervention programs, and our family engagement activities. More information about these programs will be shared as the school year progresses.
The final bit of new information I want to share is in regards to our drop off and pick up procedures. We are asking that families register with the elementary office if they plan to routinely drop off or pick up their student. Once registered they will receive a hangtag for their cars that will be used after school as staff will release students to the their parents, reducing the potential of congestion, traffic accidents, and students running in front of cars. For more information about this new procedure, please visit our website or attend our Elementary Open House on August 24th.