SA looking to expand services to migrant students

Authored by Manda Arnold on Oct 16, 2013

Upon the request of the Department of Education (DOE) and with the school board’s approval on Tuesday evening, South Adams will be applying for a Migrant Education Service Center Grant with the DOE. If this grant is awarded, South Adams will be the host of the northeast service center. Superintendent Scott Litwiller stated that he would be highly surprised if the school was not awarded the grant since the DOE approached South Adams about it.
The DOE is reorganizing its migrant education organization structure. In order to provide more timely service, the migrant education program is decentralizing by establishing resource centers throughout the state. South Adams was chosen because of their already successful migrant program and because 50 percent of the migrant population in northeast Indiana lives in the South Adams’ district.
Litwiller stated that he would be posting open positions for the center immediately. Positions needed would be director, assistant director, clerk/administrative assistant, and tutors. Litwiller and Susie Amstutz, migrant director at South Adams, have already looked at two possible locations for the center office. One location is in Geneva, and the other is in Berne. Litwiller stated that ideally the office would be at South Adams but there just isn’t space available.
Activities that would take place at the center are to develop curriculum, programs, and supplemental activities; purchase and distribute materials and supplies; provide support for teachers via educational resources and training; and oversee the education of all migrant students in northeast Indiana. According to Amstutz, there are six regions in Indiana. The northeast region consists of 13 counties and 114 migrant students.
The South Adams School Board also approved the Fire and Rescue Career and Technical Education Pilot Class for the 2014-2015 school year. Plans for this class have been in the works for several months. The class will be aligned for postsecondary dual credit at Ivy Tech and will be a two-credit class. It will also be aligned for industry certification. Start-up costs for the class will be between $15,000-$20,000. The Area 18 board approved to pay up to $20,000 for start-up costs. The program will be conducted at the Geneva Fire Station. The main expense to South Adams will be the cost of a teacher. The teacher will teach two periods and will have one prep period. For salary and wage-related benefits, the teacher will be paid $16,200. The school will also need to add another $2,500 to $6,400 if the part-time teacher enrolls in the school’s health insurance plan. Since the class will be a shared program and open to students of other schools, the teacher salary will be proportionally shared among the sending schools. Other schools that have already shown an interest are Adams Central, North Adams, and Jay County.
At the beginning of the evening, the board held a short public hearing regarding objections to and support for a proposed Superintendent of Schools employment contract. No objections were made. The contract will expire on June 30, 2017. The superintendent’s annual salary will be $135,622, which includes a pay increase of $1,190 the same dollar raise as for all certified employees evaluated as effective or highly effective. The contract includes nine paid holidays and includes a technology allowance for a personal cell phone used for school business.
Finally, the board approved two $500 donations to the cross country team. One of the donations was from the Muncie Ironman Foundation. The cross country team went to Muncie earlier this year and worked an aid station during the Ironman run. The other donor wished to remain anonymous.

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