School board hears update on the new flex mod scheduling

By Dustin Koury
The Pulaski School Board heard updates on the successes and potential areas for improvement regarding the Flex Mod scheduling at their Committee of the Whole meeting Wednesday, Feb. 3.
Pulaski High School Principal John Matczak told the Board that three surveys were conducted in order to gather opinions from students, teachers, and parents regarding the Flex Mod system. According to Matczak, over 600 students responded to the student survey. Of those students, over 80% of students report feeling knowledgeable about the new scheduling model. Matczak said that the school will continue to educate students in their homeroom periods in order to help in understanding regarding the new system and PLT times. Matczak states that if he could have done anything differently in the implementation of this schedule, he would have had more open house sessions earlier in order to ensure that parents and students had a better understanding of the program and why it was implemented. Matczak pointed specifically to the success of the program, particularly during its first semester and was optimistic about improved communication with parents and the continued success of the Flex Mod. “We wanted our students to take control of their learning,” said Matczak, stating his confidence that the new scheduling is allowing students to reach that goal.
The Board also unanimously approved a proposal from JW Industries to construct the bleachers for the Field of Dreams Project. According to Interim Superintendent Bec Kurzynske, Board policy indicates that the school district will use local contracting agencies whenever possible, but also that the issue come before the Board when the District does not plan on getting bids from other service providers. Kurzynske and Athletic Director Janel Batten stated that they would be open to taking bids from other organizations; however, there is not another contractor available that will provide a water-tight product. Additionally, with approval at this time, JW Industries will be able to complete the bleachers by the targeted September completion date. JW Industries constructed the bleachers that are currently being used in the district and has a good track record with the district according to multiple board members. The bid from JW Industries was not made public during the meeting in the event that the District did choose to gather bids from additional contractors. Batten stated that one potential savings from using JW Industries will be that the early construction date will allow for the district to move goalposts that they currently own so that they will not need to purchase new posts.
The Board also agreed to table a proposal from Alumni Nations regarding the development of a Raider Nation in order to help communicate with Pulaski alumni and the community until the Communications Coordinator position is filled.
Items for the Feb. 17 Board Agenda include: Glenbrook Elementary Update, January Budget Report, 5th Grade Field Trip to U-Nah-Li-Ya, PHS Online Learning Pilot, and 2015-16 Budget Projection.