Better Lunches

Farm to School is a free program available to our school’s food service director. It facilitates networking between the school and local farms anxious to sell their fresh produce to the community. The program also provides Menus that Move, a fully-designed set of menus and recipes that uses fresh, seasonal produce, dairy, and proteins available to the school.

Some of the menu items:

  • Sante Fe Wraps
  • Teriyaki Chicken with Brown Rice
  • Carrots & Hummus
  • Chicken Alfredo
  • Veggie Lasagna
  • Bean & Corn Salad
  • Garlic Broccoli
  • Spinach Strawberry Salad

More Technology

Our schools need better and more technology. Every high school student should have his own tablet where his textbooks and homework are accessed. We need to incorporate tablets and Chromebooks into every single classroom

A recent PBS study found that 63% of teachers report budget as the biggest barrier to accessing technology. The Government offers dozens of grants to increase the tech available to our schools. I will personally write the grants to get the money.

TENMARKS (an Amazon company) provides curriculum and labs tailored for each classroom. The American Institute for Research shows a boost of 8 points on State Tests when using TENMARK. They have math & writing bundles starting at $8/student. 

Whispercast (also an Amazon company) allows teachers to create ebook curriculum and send it to individual tablets. Teachers can also integrate assignments right into it. Whispercast also has built-in study tools.

A Different Way to Evaluate

The State of Ohio allows two methods for teacher evaluation. Both methods use administrative assessment of teacher performance as half the evaluation score. Where they differ is where they other half comes from.

For one method, only 35% comes from state test scores. The remaining 15% comes from various measures like student surveys, peer reviews, self-evaluations, and student portfolios. The other method relies entirely on student state test scores for the whole 50% of the teacher evaluation. Lexington Schools have opted to use this method.

Half the value of our teachers is determined by State Test Scores. Their careers hangs on these numbers. Is it any wonder so many of them feel pressure to “teach to the test”? Are we surprised when our kids are overwhelmed with the amount of homework and schoolwork they receive?

Teachers should be evaluated on the method that includes the various alternative components. We need to take the State Testing pressure off of our teachers and allow them to do the job we hired them to do: inspire our children.