The 2018-2019 school year is going to be all about maximizing student growth and preparing for the future, according to Delaware City Schools Superintendent Paul Craft.
“(This year is about) maximizing growth for all students, both academically as well as the social, and from that emotional and work skills perspective,” Craft said in July.
Craft said the school district is implementing a new math curriculum this year called “Eureka Math,” which he said is a “better blend” of modern techniques that help students grasp the principles of math in a way they can manipulate and traditional math methods that parents are familiar with.
Craft said the district is also focusing on the growth in the city of Delaware and prepping as much as possible to accommodate the influx of students.
“We keep trying to stay ahead of the game as far as growth,” Craft said. “Our last bond was really about catching up with the growth that we’ve experienced, and that challenge is going to continue.”
Craft pointed at new house developments in the city, and he added four of the five elementary schools will see rapid growth.
“We’ve got to stay ahead of that wave of kids,” Craft said. “We expect to see continued enrollment increases year after year. We want to be proactive rather than reactive. It’s an amazing problem to have.”
Craft said Delaware County is one of only three counties in Ohio that is gaining enrollment, and said the district “continues to grow in a way that’s unique in the state of Ohio. Eighty five out of 88 counties are losing enrollment, and this county is exploding.
“I don’t want to say it’s a status quo year because it’s not.” Craft said. “We feel we can plan without being under crisis; we don’t have a levy that if it fails, it changes who we are; we don’t have contract negotiations that will have a huge impact on the district; this is truly a year where we can focus on maximizing individual student growth and prepping for the future in terms of our enrollment.”
Craft said that safety remains a top priority for the district.
“We think we we’re in pretty good shape to start with,” Craft said.
He added the district’s security measures mean everyone is greeted and screened before they are let into the school. However, Craft said that in February, the board allocated $100,000 for security projects throughout the district. Craft said the money has gone to adding shatterproof security film to many glass doors and windows in the district, as well as improving the radios inside the school so staff can better communicate.
“It really let us move on some projects right away,” Craft said. “The next set of building projects will have security components. We will continue to make modifications to our buildings going forward.”
Craft said the district is also focusing on training and conducting larger scale safety drills.
“We’ll do everything we can do to ensure these environments are safe,” Craft said.
According the district calendar, sixth-grade orientation will take place on Aug. 7 from 8 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. depending on which team a student is on, the district reports. Information will be mailed in late July informing families of their team and orientation time.
Hayes Back-to-School Day will take place on Aug. 8 from 7 a.m. to noon and on Aug. 9 from 3 to 7 p.m. Hayes Back-to-School Help will also take place on Aug. 9 from 7 to 10 a.m. Hayes Freshman Orientation is from noon to 2 p.m. on Aug. 13.
Dempsey Schedule Pickup and Fee Payment will be from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Aug. 8 and from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Aug. 9.
Elementary Back-to-School Night is from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
August 15 is the first day of the school year for students.
There will be no school on Sept. 3 for Labor Day and no school on Sept. 20 and 21 for Brown Jug/Fair Days.
School supplies list and more information can be found on the district’s website at www.dcs.k12.oh.us
“Let’s continue to do great and maximize the growth of every kid in environments that are safe, that are supportive, and have the capacity to deal with students now and those coming in the future,” Craft said.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.