On Thursday, March 23 Wm. E. Hay students presented on their recent trip to San Diego at the regular Clearview Public Schools board meeting.
Five teachers and seven students from grades 7 to 12 spent one week in San Diego in February attending a high school redesign conference.
The conference introduced teachers and students to a number of alternative teaching methods such as project-based learning (PBL) and specialty courses.
Conference attendees had the opportunity to tour two alternative high schools in San Diego: San Diego Metropolitan Career and Technical High School (known as the Met) and High Tech High.
“It was a neat comparison to see the schools we visited and what we are doing within our own school,” said Grade 7 teacher Amy Smith. “Touring around the Met and High Tech High, it was interesting to critically think and challenge what is known as ‘traditional teaching.’
“As teachers we realized the importance of all the programs we offer and the need to make students aware so that they can find at least one passion that keeps them inspired within our building.”
For students, learning about the methods practiced at these other schools brought up some ideas for changes at Wm. E. Hay, but also helped them appreciate what the school already has.
“A lot of people don’t realize the great things we do at Wm. E. Hay,” said Grade 10 student Jenny Munholland. “I don’t think that living in a rural community should be a disadvantage at all, and it’s not if you can take advantage of those opportunities.”
The conference also presented an opportunity for students from different grades to interact and get to know one another.
“Being with older students helped me learn what’s coming up for future years,” commented Grade 7 student Quinn Pederson.
New school bus purchase
The school board meeting also brought to light the purchase of new school buses for Clearview.
The board passed a motion to purchase four 46-passenger school buses and one 70-passenger school bus at a total cost of $495,560.35 (inclusive of net GST).
Clearview Public Schools Associate Superintendent Peter Neale pointed out that this purchase was part of an ongoing annual program for school bus maintenance.
“We do a regular purchase of about five school buses each year to replace the buses that are no longer going to be in regular service,” Neale said. “By having a regular replacement schedule, we’ve been able to see significant reductions in our budget for parts and materials and downtime on buses.”
Neale added that these five new buses will come with some improvements over the older models.
“One of the things that our bus drivers have noticed is dust coming into the bus on rural roads,” explained Neale.
The new buses will have a thicker undercarriage and redesigned windows to help keep dust out and reduce sound within the buses.