By Desiree Williams
At the Nov. 12 Zionsville Community Schools board meeting, ZCS Chief Academic Officer Kris Devereaux presented a report about the district’s progress on Strong in Every Way, a district-wide, three-pronged approach to student growth. The three areas of focus are developing connections, developing assets and resources and developing cultural understandings.
Devereaux said she and ZCS Academic Director Christine Squier have done a lot of work during the last year-and-a-half to grow the third prong of SIEW, developing cultural understandings.
“(We have been) attending conferences, workshops, seminars, webinars and reading a lot of books about how to move us forward in cultural understandings as we continue to evolve here and change demographically in this district,” Devereaux said.
As a result, the cultural understandings district team created three “pillars.” Each contains goals or action items. The pillars are global, equity and racism.
The global pillar relates to increasing awareness of national events and foreign travel opportunities and welcoming new families to the district. Equity refers to erasing the opportunity gap and empowering youth to use keen decision-making skills. The racism pillar acknowledges that racism exists and encourages people to take action to improve quality of life.
This project is ongoing.
Other school board highlights:
- Play On Zionsville donated more than $10,000 worth of instruments to ZCS, including two marching baritones for the band program and 13 pickups and multiple orchestral percussion instruments for the orchestra.
- The board pproved three new course offerings for the 2019-2020 school year: Indiana Studies; Music Theory and Composition: Songwriting; and Applied Music: Modern Band.
- The board re-appointed Monty Korte to the Library Board of Trustees for a fourth and final term.
- ZCS plans to update the wireless technology in all five elementary schools. Chief Technology Officer Dan Layton said the system has been in place four years longer than the industry standard, and the schools are having connectivity issues because of the increased number of laptops.