State of the Schools: Niedermeyer talks student internships, safety and more

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Noblesville Schools Supt. Beth Niedermeyer discusses safety and student careers in her annual address. (Photo by Sadie Hunter)

The Noblesville community heard from Noblesville Schools Supt. Beth Niedermeyer at the annual State of the Schools presentation March 21 in conjunction with the Noblesville Chamber of Commerce luncheon.

Attendees also heard from student Abbie VanMeter about the schools’ internship program.

Before introducing the superintendent, VanMeter shared her experience with the Noblesville Schools internship program. She is a Noblesville High School senior who interns with the chamber.

“I’ve been an intern with the chamber and (Hamilton County Leadership Academy) for (the) last semester, and I’ve attended Noblesville Schools my whole life,” she said. “I’ve been provided with wonderful opportunities and experiences because of that. I’ve had incredible teachers who inspired me. Here, I have been pushed outside my comfort zone in the best ways and allowed to achieve things I didn’t know I could. One of the best resources Noblesville Schools has to offer is its internships. I get to be part of it and work hands-on with events taking place.”

When Niedermeyer took the stage, the first topic she addressed was school safety, mentioning February’s school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

“Whenever there’s a school shooting, it really impacts all of us,” she said. “One of the things you need to know is (safety) is a top priority for us. We spend a lot of time talking about ways we can continue to strengthen safety measures. We have 14 certified safety specialists and four school resource officers, and we do safety drills continuously. It’s near and dear to our hearts.” 

Niedermeyer discussed the SpeakUp App, which allows students to report incidents such as bullying, threats or if someone is considering suicide. More than 200 issues have been brought to administrators’ attention through the app.

Another topic Niedermeyer highlighted was neuroscience and how it affects students in different grade levels.

“I think it’s really important for us as we are teaching students to understand how the brain impacts learning,” she said. “It’s important for us as educators to understand neuroscience research and our parents and our students, so when they are feeling things, they understand it’s a biological function and it’s normal. We are spending a great amount of time helping people understand that so they can be successful.”

Niedermeyer said school environments are constantly changing and stresssed that the community should embrace the changes.

“Why is change a good thing? Well, from our perspective, you have to make sure you are incorporating all those changes, so we are preparing students not for the world we live in today, but for the world they will be living in tomorrow,” Niedermeyer said. “We want more for our students and children, so embrace the changes you continue to see coming out of Noblesville Schools as we continue to do our best to prepare students for the future they will be living and working in.”

To end the program, Niedermeyer showed a video of what a modern-day kindergarten classroom looks like. It includes areas for collaboration and group work and different stations.

For more, visit noblesvilleschools.org.

Supt. Beth Niedermeyer works with a student at Noble Crossing Elementary. (File photo)

Fun Facts

To start the presentation, Noblesville Schools Director of Marketing and Communications Marnie Cook led attendees through a question game on an application called Kahoot, where attendees respond to questions on their smart devices. Question and answers included:

Q: Noblesville Schools has had a perfect bus-safety inspection for how many years?

A: 31

Q: This Noblesville High School team won back-to-back state championships.

A: Cheerleading

Q: True or false: More students are involved in performing arts than athletics at Noblesville. Schools

A: True

Q: Noblesville Schools serves how many studens?

A: 10,400

Q: Our students speak how many different home languages?

A: 56

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