Members of Community District Education Council 22 (CEC 22) held their monthly meeting on Tuesday evening, May 2nd via Zoom to discuss a number of very important matters, including potential school safety protocols and exciting new ELA and math initiatives.
District 22 Superintendent Julia Bove explained that a new safety protocol program is being piloted at P.S. 198, located at 4105 Farragut Road, which, if successful, may be implemented District-wide. The primary security feature being tested is a gatekeeping tool called a “safety vestibule,” an area where visitors may complete their business with the school without being granted access to the interior of the school. Ideally, both sets of doors are locked and have intercoms and cameras that allow personnel a full-body view of the visitor and a means of communication. In the vestibule, between the two sets of doors, there is usually a bullet-resistant service window with ballistic rated walls, through which a visitor may conduct their business with a staff member or security personnel.
In the case of P.S. 198, this means visitors come through the main entrance and into the foyer, where School Safety Officers are stationed and require that visitors show identification and state their business before they are permitted to pass through the second set of doors that bring them into the school itself, if they are given access at all. If for any reason the officers perceive a visitor is a threat, they can call for help before the intruder steps foot into the school, buying valuable time for help to arrive. While the program is still being assessed and adjusted, the hope is that it will provide an extra layer of protection for students.
Superintendent Bove also discussed efforts to help students recover from COVID-19 related learning loss, especially in math, a subject that she explained can be very challenging to learn remotely. As a former math teacher, Bove assured the group that improving math competency is a top priority for her and that she has invited principals to try a new math supplement program to support their students on a trial basis as soon as state testing ends all the way through to the end of June. She said that the program has been provided by Central and fosters hands-on math inquiry and exploration.
The superintendent also discussed the new English Language Arts curriculum. A special meeting was held virtually on May 10th where Instructional Specialist Allie Raskin provided an overview of the new curriculum and explained how the program will benefit students.
The next meeting of CEC 22 will be held on Tuesday, June 6th at 6:30 p.m.