Revere parents’ input sought in health department survey

by Sheldon Ocker

Aug. 8 school board work session

Summit County Public Health is asking area middle school and high school students to fill out a survey designed to provide data that will help the health department obtain funding through grants and other channels.

Revere Superintendent Michael Tefs is amenable to allowing Revere students to participate in the Youth Risk Behavior Survey, but he told the board of education that he wants parents to see the survey in the event some might not want their kids to answer certain questions.

After describing the subject matter of the survey – questions on safety, concussions, body weight, physical activity, nutrition, social media – Tefs said there were eight questions on sexual behavior he wanted families to review.

“I think in full transparency to our families … I would love to support Summit County,  but I don’t want to create a problem for Revere,” he said.

Tefs said that families can decline to have their children take the survey (or possibly certain sections of the survey) that is sponsored by the Prevention Research Center for Healthy Neighborhoods at Case Western Reserve University.

“The survey has 116 questions, and there are several questions I want our parents to see,” the superintendent said. “I would propose that we partner with Summit County Public Health as long as Summit County Public Health is agreeable that we’re going to share the survey with our families.”

Tefs said he also wanted to make the anonymous survey available to the board for review.

Top score

Tefs informed the board that Revere’s overall score on state achievement tests was a 5, the highest rating possible. Revere’s actual score was 4.8; any district scoring 4.125 or higher receives an overall rating of 5.

“The district is in a really, really good position,” the superintendent said. “Overall, you should celebrate the work at this great district.”

Tefs said that the third-grade reading score was 96% for the second year in a row, and “our math scores are phenomenal.’’

But there is always room for improvement. Even though Revere’s performance index score improved from 101 in 2021 to 102 in 2022 to 103.73 in 2023, among the top 5% in Ohio, the district can improve.

“There are 15 districts above us [there are more than 600 districts in the state] in performance index,” Tefs said. “All in all, I think the district should focus on performance index. We’ve seen improvement in that, and I think the ceiling right now is going to be around 105 or 106.”

New requirement

The state board of education has mandated that all K-6 students receive instruction in sexual abuse avoidance beginning in the fall.

Instruction will require only a day or two, and the state board has offered several choices of curriculum, from which each district must select.

Tefs said it was unlikely Revere could fulfill the requirement until the second semester, because teaching material has only recently become available, and principals and teachers have yet to choose an appropriate curriculum. It also will take time for teachers to familiarize themselves with the content.

Planning for the future

Treasurer Rick Berdine received board approval to purchase 1.8 acres at 3395 Everett Rd. (next to Richfield Elementary) for about $370,000.

The board has no immediate plans for the property, which includes a house, but it will enable the district to enlarge Richfield Elementary in the future.

“People should keep in mind that we sold property behind Richfield Elementary School that was swamp land,” board member Claudia Hower said. “We have enough proceeds [from that $450,000 sale] to buy better land for possible expansion.”

New hire

The board approved the hiring of Alaynah Carney as assistant supervisor of transportation. Carney is signing a two-year contract with a salary of $45,000 per school year.

Carney has been employed by the district as a permanent substitute bus driver. ∞