Editor's note: The following is a letter that was sent from District 181 Superintendent Renée Schuster to district families Thursday concerning the ongoing discussion of the recommendations by the district's advanced learning task force, which will continue Monday night at Elm School. Board members spent over three hours discussing the proposal at their Feb. 11 meeting. You can listen to that discussion via the District 181 podcast, which can be found here.
We are committed to keeping you informed about the work we do each day to continually improve the educational experiences of students in District 181. This school year, you have had the opportunity to hear from our advanced learning task force.
In the fall of 2011, the board of education held renewed discussion regarding concerns related to meeting the needs of the District’s gifted education students and the services those students were receiving. To effectively review and address those concerns, the district contracted with the University of Virginia to conduct a program review. Following the university’s report, the district developed a philosophy of teaching and learning and a definition of gifted students. Additionally, the board of education called for a task force to be established for the purpose of developing an inclusive implementation plan incorporating the university’s findings.
During the Feb. 11 board of education meeting, the advanced learning task force engaged in a dialogue with our board members about proposed long-term plans. To help further clarify that information, the task force has developed a question-and-answer document. I encourage you to review this Q&A and its related attachments.
The green highlighting on the Q&A indicates areas that were not discussed in detail during the Feb. 11 meeting. Answers that refer to an attachment are highlighted in pink.
The board of education will next discuss the multi-year advanced learning task force recommended plan during their meeting at Elm School on Feb. 25, 2013 (7 p.m.). For those who cannot attend, you can access the live podcast link here.
Thank you for your attention and for your partnership in helping all District 181 students learn and grow.
Dr. Renée Schuster