by Janet Schultz
The Lewiston Porter Board of Education held two consecutive public hearings on student conduct Tuesday evening with no residents attending.
The first was the district's annual review of the Code of Conduct, which has been revised to bring it up-to-date. High School Principal Paul Casseri reviewed the policy, explaining that this document is included in both the school calendar and the student planners, as well as posted on the website in the district's policy manual.
The students also receive a review of the policy at their class meetings.
Casseri reviewed the Dignity Act and went over the Electronic Communication Devices Use portions in detail, as well as the disciplinary procedures the school district uses.
In a second presentation, Intermediate Education Center Principal Andy Auer presented everyone in attendance with a shortened, but detailed, version of the Student Acceptable Use Policy.
Again he covered the district's policies and procedures for students using electronic devices on campus. The policy addresses students who bring all types of electronic devices, including iPads, Kindles, Nooks, other tablet PC's, laptops and network computers, personal digital assistants (PDAs), cell phones, smart phones and any other device with similar capabilities.
Gaming devices or consoles, laser pointers, modems or routers and televisions are not acceptable on campus.
Each child will be receiving a copy of the policy with three permission forms that must be signed by the child and their parent. This includes the Acceptable Use Policy, the Student Use of Personal Technology, allowing them to bring their device on campus and a photo/picture/image release giving parents the option to use images on a limited basis or not to use them.
Auer also presented a Chromebook to the Board explaining that each ninth grader will be receiving this piece of technology, as well as 10th grade honors students.
"This is an Internet based device," explained Auer. "The only thing they can access is the district's computer system through the Internet."
He did explain that there would be blockages on social networking and other sites.
"We are very much on target with what we are doing in showing students how to appreciate the technology and become a good digital citizen," said Auer.
Following the public hearing, the board moved to their regular meeting with an update on the district's construction plan from Superintendent Christopher Roser.
The project has been delayed due to the State Education Department's delay in approving the plans.
"This was not poor planning on our part," explained Roser. "The SED has slowed the process down and now the project is way behind."
Roser explained there were some changes the SED required which will now impact the new eight-lane pool that was projected. Due to the costs the former board decided to not make some renovations but moved ahead with those that were very necessary, such as making secure entrances in each building.
The original project cost $26.7 million and with the changes the estimated cost is $29.1.
"We tried to find ways to bring it in line," explained Roser.
"We went from an eight-lane pool to a six-lane pool and now we may have to look at renovating the current pool. With the repairs, including a liner, the pool could last up to 12 years," he continued. "Then you could build the new pool."
The board will bring recommendations to their next meeting on how to move forward with the Capital Project in line with the budget.
In other business, the board approved:
•Field trips for the AP art/French club to travel to Paris in February 2015, and for the varsity cheerleading squad to attend the Ameri-Cheer International competition in Orlando;
•An agreement with AAA Western and Central New York for driver education;
•The appointment of Michael Gentile as the district's representative to the Niagara Orleans School Board Association.
The meeting ended with Roser announcing, "We are ready for school!"
Girls On The Run returns this September to Lewiston-Porter. The program will be offered from 3:45 to 5:15 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays to girls, grades 3-5, in the Intermediate Education Center.
Girls On The Run inspires girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum, which creatively integrates running. The fall program begins Tuesday, Sept. 9. It will culminate with a Nov. 8 5K celebrating the girls success in completing the program.
Registration is now underway. For more information, contact Susan at 716-583-6725 or visit www.gotrbuffalo.org.