The Marshall School Board had a quiet Sept. 1 meeting focusing on back-to-school pre-service days training district staff went through weeks before.

“The administrative team had spent a lot of time invested in conversations, data, and really focusing on what we wanted to accomplish this year for our students and for our families,” Curriculum and Instruction Director Randy Bartels said.

The training highlighted a scorecard, or goals for improvement, based on three areas of education: literacy, math, and social and emotional learning in the classroom. Consultants were brought in during four training sessions to work with the teachers on math units, instructional delivery and classroom responsiveness from students.

“It’s guiding (teachers) through the process of developing a consistent unit plan with the same components, the same instructional design and delivery for students,” Bartels said.

Two days out of the pre-service training days were spent focusing on family outreach. Teachers would contact their students’ families and invite them in for a short introduction, allowing the child to meet their teacher and be assess on literacy and math before the start of the school year.

Staff could schedule their 16 hours of service days based on their summer schedule. That flexibility gave everyone – families, students and staff – the chance to meet at good times and get the assessments done.

“It was super creative,” Superintendent Dan Grady said.

COVID dashboard

Last year, the district implemented a COVID dashboard on its website to let families and the community know how many positive and potential cases of the virus were among students and staff. The board discussed the benefits of keeping the district COVID dashboard updated.

While the tracker could be a “security blanket,” as board member Staci Abrahamson said, Grady mentioned the fact that the state of Wisconsin keeps track of data for each county.

The board only discussed the issue and looks to make a potential decision in a later meeting.

Project updates

Business Manager Bob Chady provided an update on the summer projects that were either completed or still in progress.

A majority of the finished projects include the following: water bottle filling stations throughout the Marshall schools; buying a snowplow dump truck; new high school scoreboards for the stadium and indoor gymnasium; parking lot repairs; new kitchen equipment; and new fencing at the ELC.

Projects that are still in progress include: updates in the high school weight room; renovating the reading recovery center; and finishing the high school track.

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