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Kelso school board to vote on expanding virtual academy Monday
KELSO

Kelso school board to vote on expanding virtual academy Monday

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Kelso School District

Young students may soon have more online learning options. At its meeting Monday, the Kelso School Board is scheduled to vote on expanding the district’s longstanding virtual academy to the full K-12 range.

There will be a work session on the expansion at 4 p.m. before the 5 p.m. school board meeting. Both are virtual. To join, visit www.kelso.wednet.edu the day of the meeting.

According to the district website, the virtual academy is an “innovative, engaging educational program that inspires students to learn from anywhere and at their own pace.” It uses online core subjects and elective choices that run “parallel” with the in-person curriculum and that meet state standards, according to the website.

Students check in with teachers at least weekly and can also opt to have in-person learning in specific subjects.

The board also will receive updates on the construction of bond projects and a preliminary report about next year’s budget. It will also vote on an $11 million bid from Pease Construction for the modernization project at Butler Acres, according to agenda documents.

While fall sports still are up in the air due to the pandemic, the board will vote whether to renew district membership with the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association for next year.

A resolution to get district credit cards for 16 administrators and three departments is also on the agenda, with credit limits ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 for district-related purchases.

And the board will also vote on raising the price of school meals by 5 cents to align with federally mandated reimbursement guidelines. According to agenda documents, the average price of a meal is $3.04. The increase would make elementary lunches $2.95, middle and high school lunches $3.20 and all breakfasts $1.75.

In other business, the board will hear first readings on:

  • Student immunizations and life threatening health conditions: Adds meningococcal disease to the list of diseases for which the district provides parents with information, brings immunization record requirements in line with new state requirements and requires that districts keep a list of all students who are not fully immunized.
  • Gender-inclusive schools: Updates the glossary of terms, recommends that a staff member meet with students who identify as transgender or nonbinary to talk about how the student wants to be addressed in school and how the student would like to be addressed in communications home, and clarifies the high school transcript is the only document that requires a student’s legal name, and staff should “adopt practices to avoid the inadvertent disclosure of the student’s transgender or gender-expansive status.” These changes are state recommended.
  • District area transfers: Updated how districts report students who have transferred to a different county.

And second readings on:

  • Prohibition of harassment, intimidation, and bullying: Updates definitions of bullying, harassment and intimidation.
  • School-based threat assessment: State board recommended policy that lays out the structure and purpose of threat assessment teams. Kelso school district had a threat assessment team structure in place prior to this policy.
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