School Board Approves Teachers’ Contract, Talks Common Core Standards

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(Garden City, KS) (westernkansasnews.com) Garden City based USD 457 Board of Education met Monday and voted unanimously in favor of approval of a negotiated contract with teachers for the school year that has just ended.  Chairperson Gloria Hopkins says the district will begin work immediately on an agreement for the upcoming school year.  Negotiations with faculty dragged out due to an impasse over a proposed dress code that requires teachers to wear business-casual attire.  Teachers voted in favor the agreement in May.

Board members also heard a presentation from Assistant Superintendent Darren Dennis and Literacy Instruction Director Leigh Ann Roderick on the transition from current assessment standards to new Common Core Standards.  The new approach will require more critical thinking from students and much closer analysis of books and reading materials.  Dennis told the board that “It’s all about quality instruction in the end.” 

Board members also approved a resolution urging Congress to reauthorize the ‘No Child Left Behind’ Act.  Chairperson Hopkins says the National School Board Association is spearheading a drive to have the law rewritten to address the multiple concerns of school districts across the country.