by Sheldon Ocker
Nov. 8 school board work session
Revere Schools Board of Education President Keith Malick discussed a bomb threat directed at Bath Elementary School on Nov. 8.
Though law enforcement teams swept the school and found no evidence of an explosive device on the property, the attempt to menace the school caused major complications and concerns for many in the district.
“Thankfully, all is well and everybody is safe,’’ Malick said. “First responders responded as we hoped they would. … They got the students to a secure location in the high school.’’
Malick noted that in addition to School Resource Officer Scott Dressler and police, officers from the Summit County Sheriff’s Department plus agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, an arm of the U.S. Department of Justice, took part in the sweep and the investigation, which is ongoing.
Malick thanked the Revere transportation department for acting quickly to move the elementary kids to the high school and parents for “staying calm.’’
Superintendent Michael Tefs also praised the work of district school bus drivers.
“In a matter of about 30 minutes, they moved 600 students,’’ he said. “This is a good time to be in Revere and know there are so many people who care.’’
There was little solid information about who planned and carried out the threat to Bath Elementary.
“There is all kinds of information being circulated,’’ Malick said. “It’s my understanding that there was a voicemail left last evening, and that voicemail was listened to by staff and appropriate action was taken immediately.’’
Added Tefs, “Every single person in this district to some extent was touched by [what happened] today. I hope the authorities can figure this one out. I really don’t think that whoever did this understands what they put the community through.’’
Checking the tech
Five years after Revere instituted its “One-on-One’’ technology program – giving every student a computerized device – Director of Technology John Schinker is conducting an analysis of the program’s effectiveness, defects and where it should go from here.
“This is a good time to see if it is meeting our needs, and do we need to do anything different,’’ he said.
Schinker sent a survey to all teachers, parents and students in grades 6-12 to determine the effect of the program, how the devices are being used and whether any complaints can be resolved. Schinker said he received almost 1,100 responses that generated 23,000 data points.
“We’ve seen substantial evidence that we are using technology to customize the learning experience of every student,’’ he said. “Students report that they are more engaged with their learning and that they are collaborating a lot. …These are very positive outcomes.’’
Not every response was positive.
“There are lots of concerns about overuse of technology and about technology distraction, when you have a device in your hand [and your attention should be elsewhere], especially at the elementary level,’’ Schinker said. “There are some indications that we should back off a little bit.’’
The next step for Schinker is to solicit teachers’ thoughts about what direction the program should take.
Tefs announced that Revere has produced 16 National Merit Scholars this school year.
“These are among the top 1% of all students in the United States,’’ the superintendent said.
Bath Elementary Principal Dan Fry has been nominated as Principal of the Year by the Ohio Association of Elementary School Administrators.
“As humble as Mr. Fry is, he wants absolutely no recognition,’’ Tefs said.
At least two rounds of interviews remain before a winner of the award is determined. ∞