By Devese “Dee” Ursery
Collinsville Community Unit School District 10 during the Monday meeting approved the purchase of gaming equipment for the Esports club at CHS.
The Esports Gaming Club will be able to obtain equipment to include games and consoles as approved by the school board. Under new business the school board has approved the purchase of several gaming consoles, PC’s, monitors and games for the high school, middle school and Dorris Intermediate. The purchase will be for six gaming PC’s, 12 Nintendo Switch consoles, three Playstation 5 consoles, 21 monitors and 25 games costing $19,844 in total.
The Illinois High School Association for Esports attempts to create and foster competitive Esports programs in all Illinois high schools by providing assistance and organizing tournaments. The IHSA also presents information to schools and advisers.
Reports discussed at the meeting were the budget committee update, the superintendent’s report and curriculum and instruction report. The board of education agreed to the approval of the Athleadership Academy in Character Education program for CHS.
In the superintendent’s report Dr. Brad Skertich first discussed his excitement for the 2023 VISION National Student Leadership Conference.
“This is an exciting time for our students and we are grateful for all the hard work put forth by (Kyle) Gordon and countless volunteers to make this a reality over the past year,” Skertich said.
According to Skertich this is the second time CHS has hosted the national convention, giving it the distinction of being the only high school to host the conference twice.
Skertich stated that summer work and revitalization projects are happening throughout the district. He said the maintenance staff has a laundry list of assignments for this summer, including bathroom renovations at Webster Elementary, the addition at DIS and interior restoration. Skertich also mentioned bathroom and interior remodeling to be done at CHS and construction of Caseyville Elementary is ongoing.
Nominations for the CUSD 10 Hall of Fame nominations will close on Aug. 1. The inaugural class will be declared at the Holiday Classic in December with an induction ceremony held on Feb. 15 at the Gateway Convention Center to honor inductees.
According to reports nomination forms can be formed by going to the Collinsville website and submitted electronically or by completing the form in-person.
Skertich said on-line registration will start July 10 and urged students to register sooner rather than later.
“We want to encourage families to register their children as soon as possible,” Skertich said. “This allows Brad Hyre and the building principals to have as much time as possible to place in homerooms, create schedules and manage transportation changes.”
The Collinsville Delta Psi Epsilon Chapter of retired teachers has donated $1,000 on behalf of the Kahoks Teaching Kahoks program for an annual scholarship for future teachers.
“We would like to thank our many staff members for their payroll deductions to help fund the future teacher’s program,” Skertich said. “This year, over $4,000 was raised by our staff and that number continues to grow each year. In August a paraprofessional scholarship will be awarded for the first time.”
LaToya Berry-Coleman, director of curriculum and assessment touched on a few subjects in her report.
“First as discussed in the curriculum board committee meeting last week the elementary curriculum council has selected to pilot the McGraw-Hills reveal math program for next school year,” Berry-Coleman said.
The team will meet monthly to discuss the progress to discuss any concerns, if any with the program, Berry-Coleman said. She said that team will also assist in full implementation of the program the following year. A request for a recommendation to approve the program for full adoption to use in the spring will be coming down the pipe soon. The program will be funded by the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) grant.
“This is one thing that we have left out of our curriculum budget in that grant,” Berry-Coleman said.
Berry-Coleman also mentioned grades nine and 10 will take the STAR Reading and Math Assessment this upcoming school year. She said English and Math teachers decided to discontinue the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) MAP for this coming school year in order to stay consistent with grades two through eight.
Berry-Coleman said they met with STAR representatives and they did a review of the data and reports. STAR liked what they saw and decided to do a full implementation next year of that assessment and in that case STAR will utilize grades two through 10. She reported that they received the preliminary data for the spring state assessments which will be shared in October when it is finalized.
In the pre-Kindergarten report, Berry-Coleman said the governor’s budget has passed and it includes funding for universal Pre-K programming.
“The plan is that we’ll have full implementation byu 2027, so we have four years to kind of work towards that goal,” Berry-Coleman said. “What that means is that more three and four-year olds have access to Pre-Kindergarten and the program will not just be for students who meet certain poverty guidelines and so it will be open to those who would like to attend.”
Berry-Coleman also discussed staff training in her report. She said the Pre-K/Early Childhood Department is in its fourth year of program-wide Pyramid Model implementation. In the report it stated the emotional framework provides a foundation for teaching and learning that will support each student’s early education. All teachers and assistants were provided training in the Pyramid Model for Preschool, including all new members when hired, per the release.
Brightpoint, previously called CHASI, served 22 district families this year and they have five families from the surrounding areas currently on their waiting list, Berry-Coleman said.
“We are proud to say that after state compliance monitoring, our programs kept the Gold rating through the Excelerate system,” Berry-Coleman said.