Revere board welcomes new member plus two CVCC board reps

by Sheldon Ocker

March 14 school board work session

Courtney Stein was sworn in by Treasurer Rick Berdine as the newest member of the Revere board of education after being selected the previous day over a slate of more than two dozen applicants.

“We had many, many qualified candidates,’’ said board Vice President Claudia Hower. “We saw the passion people showed in their applications about Revere Schools. We felt there were multiple possibilities, but she rose to the top.’’

Twenty-six applications for the position were received. Of those, the board interviewed five candidates.

Stein is a founding member of the Revere Foundation and its current vice president. She has been president of the PTA at Bath, Hillcrest (now Richfield) elementary schools and Revere Middle School. She taught first and second grade in the Stow-Munroe Falls system for six years and subbed for a year in the Revere district.

Stein graduated from high school in the Pine-Richland district north of Pittsburgh and graduated from John Carroll University in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree.

A vacancy on the board occurred when Mike Kahoe resigned to take a job in state government in Columbus. Stein will serve out the remainder of his unexpired term, which ends Dec. 31. She can run in November for a full four-year term.

Stein and her husband, Matt, have two daughters, Meredith, who attends the University of Pittsburgh, and Avery, who attends Revere High and plays on the softball team.

The board selected two individuals to represent Revere on the Cuyahoga Valley Career Center board: Jennifer Burke and Michael Wiant.

According to board President Keith Malick, Burke has a history of assisting CVCC. He also said that Wiant supplies vehicles for CVCC students to work on.

Technology update

John Schinker, Revere’s director of technology, gave an update of the district’s technology program.

He said one goal was to raise Richfield Elementary and Revere Middle School to the level of Revere High and Bath Elementary, which are housed in buildings less than five years old.

“We had smart boards and audio systems that were sub par in those buildings,’’ Schinker said, adding that the middle school was updated last year by installing 83-inch flat panel screens in each classroom.

The plan, according to Schinker, is to put 77-inch flat panel screens in Richfield this summer. Students at both schools will be supplied with Lavalier microphones.

It’s been five years since Revere instituted its 1:1 program, making sure that every student has access to a computer.

“We wanted to see if we are meeting our goals,’’ Schinker said, adding that he conducted a survey of parents, students and teachers in grades 6-12.

“The good news is that we are meeting the objectives of the 1:1 program,’’ he said, pointing out that the students are more engaged and have increased learning enjoyment, that teaching is more individualized, and students have found new ways to show what they learn and collaborate on projects.

But there have been issues, such as charging and keyboard problems.

One question remains: When does too much technology become counterproductive?

“We saw across the board that among students, parents and teachers that there is a concern we’re overusing technology and that technology can become a distraction,’’ Schinker said.  “We want to take a more careful approach.’’

Schinker said the latest plan is not to introduce laptops until first grade, and beginning in fifth grade, students can take the devices home.

He also said devices will be replaced on a staggered schedule, rather than all in one year.

Other items

• Berdine said he received three bids for the football stadium entrance project. The job was awarded to C.T. Taylor Construction for $631,441. Eclipse Company will do the Richfield playground site work for $95,300.

• Superintendent Michael Tefs asked for the board’s input about reaching the greatest number of residents for Tefs’ annual State of the Schools address.

Suggestions ranged from linking the address with a student presentation that would attract parents to recording the speech and making it available to everyone in the district.

• Two representatives of the Ohio Association of Public School Employees presented a grievance to the board concerning an event on Dec. 6 in which no “qualified’’ kitchen employee was present to oversee work in the Richfield Elementary kitchen.

The board did not comment.

The board can send a written decision to the union within 12 days (as of March 14). If the issue is not resolved, the grievance will be submitted to mediation. ∞

Featured Photo: Courtney Stein (center) was sworn in to serve on the Revere Board of Education. Her husband Matt and daughter Meredith attenedd the ceremony. Photo by S. Ocker.