Incline schools ponder their future
April 24, 2009
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. “-With recommendations from the Incline Schools Reflective Task Force due to Washoe County Superintendent Paul Dugan on May 14, the committee was busy finalizing its report Thursday.
The committee heard final reports from its four subcommittees ” finance, program and curriculum, diversity and marketing. From those reports, the task force settled on two priorities for Incline’s educational future.
One was the International Baccalaureate program, an intensive educational model which encourages an education on par with the global economy, including a focus on all students attaining a second language.
The second was a Parent Information Facilitator, which former Incline Elementary Principal and Task Force member Harry Haaser said was “critical to the Hispanic community.”
The PIF, currently filled by task force member and chair of the diversity subcommittee Vanessa Diaz, is a position for which the state is no longer funding, said Committee Chair Sharon Kennedy.
Part of Diaz’s role as a bilingual employee is to relay information to Incline Middle School staff from the Hispanic community.
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“A PIF is a person that’s dedicated to be the school’s liaison in the Hispanic community,” Haaser said. “For parents in that community it’s someone they can talk to and alleviates that fear of going to school and facing a language barrier. Parents know who to call to talk about their child’s grades with, it’s a critical position.”
The task force voted to make the PIF position one they would ask the school district to fund next year after the current funds for the position, a grant, runs out.
In addition to IB and PIF, the task force agreed unanimously to back the Incline school’s new website, http://www.inclineschools.org.
The site was designed by resident Wayne McClelland and is hosted for free.
Marketing chair Debbie Hansen unveiled the site, which offers information about each school as a marketing tool to attract parents to Incline. Listed on the site are school accomplishments and an aggregator for Incline education news.
The site comes as a response to a task force finding showing the schools were not adequately marketed.
A ski academy was also voted as a recommendation for Dugan. Principal John Clark of Incline High School, a task force member, said a ski academy appears feasible and relatively cost free.
“I don’t see any reason why we couldn’t have it next year,” Clark said.
An academy would allow athletes to train and attend high school on a shortened schedule, making up missed classes through independent study and online coursework.
The committee next meets at 10 a.m., Thursday, May 14, to present its findings to Dugan.