Parents Cite Gaps in School Curriculum, Claim District Violates Law | Danville news


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DANVILLE – Parents have raised concerns about the deficiencies in Danville’s school curriculum, telling the school board on Tuesday night that the district is breaking the law and could face legal consequences.

Allison Cotner said there was a gap in the fourth-grade English Language Education (ELA) program at Liberty Valley Intermediate School. Sandy Green and Angela Krainak claimed the deficiency resulted in the resignation of a popular teacher.

Earlier in the meeting, the board accepted the resignation, effective January 2, 2022, of June Heeter, a fourth-year ELA teacher at Liberty Valley. Superintendent Ricki Boyle said she tried to dissuade Heeter from leaving.

Cotner told the board that the state-required curriculum and the school district‘s own policies did not address the current shortcomings. She said she even filed an official curriculum deficiency complaint with the state Department of Education.

Green said he deliberately moved to Danville because of the school district’s reputation. But after Heeter, “one of the most requested and respected teachers in the district unexpectedly announced her resignation,” he started asking questions.

He said that in talking to other concerned parents, “I found to my horror that the school openly admitted that they didn’t have an ELA program or bed con in fourth grade, and the little of programs that exist in third and fifth year is not research. based on standard academic definitions, ”Green read in a statement. “This is a violation of federal law as defined in Title VIII of the Primary and Secondary Education Act 1965 and as amended by the Every Pupil Achievement Act 2015. It may make the district vulnerable to legal action in federal court. “

Bed con classes use literature to teach science and social studies, as well as literature.

Green said he also learned that the district does not have adequate science or social studies programs for grades three to five, but is piloting them.

He asked council to hold the district accountable. He called for a full audit of Kindergarten to Grade 12 programs.

John Bickhart, who was appointed director of curriculum, education and technology last year, said the district has tried to provide quality education during the COVID-19 pandemic. Much of the past year has focused on delivering cyber and hybrid learning.

“We have lesson plans for all subjects,” he said. “There is a plan in place. “

Bickhart said teachers are involved in the planning process with administrators to work on fixing issues.

“It evolves. We are making plans for the future, ”he said.

“We know things are taught in the right way,” Boyle said. “The standards are being discussed.”

She said after the meeting that “when we found out about all of these things, we worked to fix them.”

“I am so saddened that Ms. Heeter is leaving,” Krainak told the board. “She is one of the best teachers in this district.”

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Norma A. Roth