votes on tuition reimbursement
By Bill McCauley
The Woodbridge School Board, at a recent meeting, voted to extend
tuition-reimbursement for a total amount of $8700 annually to non-teacher
employees to include cafeteria workers, custodians and secretaries.
The funding will come from local money.
For several years teachers have had the advantage of tuition-reimbursement
to the total amount annually of $8700.
The Woodbridge school district currently employs approximately 250
people, half of whom are administration and teachers. Expansion of
help in continued learning to a larger base of employees would enable
individual workers to continue training and secure certification in
their respective fields.
In other action following debate, the school board took favorable
action toward implementing block scheduling at the high school level
next September. Classes would double in length from the present 45
minutes. That would in turn necessitate half as many classes per subject.
Superintendent Dr. Kevin Carson stated that it would enable teachers
to move on from the traditional lecture and question and answer format
to student-challenged learning experiences. These would include individual
and group research projects and hands-on learning experiences.
"No teacher can lecture 90 minutes," said Carson. The answer, he said,
was to utilize other proven methods of teaching from H.S.T.W. (High
Schools That Work). H.S.T.W. principles are used by the Southern Regional
Education Board (S.R.E.B.) based in Atlanta, Ga.
Other members of S.R.E.B. include Sussex Tech, Polytech in Kent County
and one other of the 19 school districts in Delaware, in addition
S.R.E.B.'s teaching techniques lend themselves well to double-length,
half as frequent class periods of block scheduling that allows a greater
variety of student learning experiences and teacher-guided activities.
They are especially beneficial to the young person at risk.
Critical to the successful implementation of block scheduling are
three facets: board funded instructional supplies; administration
supported structure and time for teachers to meet together to facilitate
integration of learning between subjects, especially core subjects;
and staff development entailing the equivalent of several days training
per year in order to reorient teachers' instructional methods.
High Schools That Work principles utilize techniques that more actively
involve and challenge the youngster as opposed to the more passive
lecture and textbook approach.