Newhall Board to review California Health Kids Survey Report

The Newhall School District Office. Dan Watson/The Signal

The Newhall School District Governing Board is expected to review the results of an annual report that provides data to foster positive school climates, prevents barriers to academic achievement and promote positive youth development during its meeting Tuesday.

Named the California Healthy Kids Survey Annual Report, the survey was implemented by the California Department of Education in 1997 to provide data on school and student environments.

It also was created to promote the successful cognitive, social, and emotional development of all students and to create more positive, engaging school environments for students, staff and parents.

The survey believes that “understanding the scope and nature of youth behaviors, attitudes and learning conditions is essential to guide school improvement efforts and to also develop effective prevention, health, and youth development programs.”

Through a broad range of questions, the survey reveals student perceptions and experiences related to school climate, engagement, learning supports and health-related barriers, like violence.

It also asked questions about school connectedness, adult relationships and expectations, opportunities for participation, perceived safety and reasons for bullying at school.

Results of the survey are used in Single Plans for Student Achievement and reported in district’s Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP).

This year’s survey in the district recorded responses from 573 students, which was below the target sample of 998 students by 425.

The survey highlights major changes to student responses that reflect a change in more than five percentage points between school years, from 2015-16 to 2016-17.

Results of this year’s survey showed a mixed response to questions about school development, social and emotional learning, and parent or adult involvement in school work.

For example, the percentage of students that responded “yes most or all of the time” to a question about teachers and grownups listening to what students had to say increase in more than five percentage points for Meadows Elementary, Pico Canyon Elementary and Valencia Valley Elementary.

But, it decreased more than five percentage points for Dr. J Michael McGrath Elementary, Oak Hills Elementary, Old Orchard Elementary, Peachland Elementary and Wiley Canyon Elementary.

However, average responses throughout the district did not increase or decrease by more than 5 percentage points and reflected a consistency between responses throughout the school years.

A significant change for the district was a decrease in students who reported being hit or pushed on school property.  Average responses decreased from 12 percent in 2015-16 to 7 percent in 2016-17.

English Learner (EL) Software

Governing Board members are also expected to approve a customer agreement for the Ellevation English Learner (EL) Software Program.

The program offers a detailed look at EL through review student’s proficiency level, accommodations and more, while monitoring current, reclassified and exited students.

Currently, Ellevation serves more than 500 public school districts in 38 states by helping educators develop solutions to improve instruction, enhance collaboration and maximize impact.

This software gives teachers tools to identify their ELs, meet their language acquisition needs and collaborate to ensure instructional success.

The Ellevation software, totaling $14,400, will include categorical compliance of student data, learning plans for each EL student, progress monitoring the current EL students and reclassified students, and instructional recommendations for each student.

The Strategies portion of Ellevation, totaling $22,400, will support resources and lessons aligned to recommendations from the data reports in the Ellevation software.

LACOE Contracts

The Governing Board is also expected to approve two contracts with the Los Angeles County office of Education (LACOE) for Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) and for sharing Foster Youth Data.

Developed by the U.S. Department of Education, PBIS improves behavior by teaching students about behavior expectations, rewarding appropriate behavior and identifying behavior issues through data.

The three-tiered program also requires school districts to implement targeted intervention techniques—like partnerships with outside agencies, meetings with school-based counselors and collaboration with family members—for students who need extra support.

Through its partnership with LACOE, the country will provide PBIS consulting and training to district leadership teams, site administrators and coaches.

This training will cost a total of $31,200 for training at eight schools in the district.

The Governing Board is also expected to approve a Memorandum of Understanding with LACOE to support foster youth data sharing efforts between all school districts in Los Angeles County.

Under the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), LACOE identified coordinating services as a state priority.  This includes working with the county child welfare agency to share information, responding to the needs of the juvenile court system and ensuring the transfer of education records.

Additional Agenda Items

  • Conduct a second reading of board policies: Superintendent Responsibilities and Duties; Superintendent Recruitment and Selection; Superintendent’s Contract; Evaluation of the Superintendent; and Administrative Discretion Regarding Board Policy
  • Approve contracts with Santa Clarita Elevators for elevator and platform lift maintenance at $660 per month
  • Approve change orders for the Newhall Elementary Auditorium Renovation to United Mechanical Contractors, Inc. for a decrease in costs by $4,289, or by 1.6 percent
  • Approve ratification of change order for asphalt work at multiple sites to Century Paving, Inc. for an increase of costs of $2,880, or 1.2 percent
  • Approve personal services contract for Bridgette Klaus of “Let’s Talk About it Auditory Verbal Therapy” to assess one kindergarten student at Peachland SDC program
  • Approve California State Preschool Program (CSPP) Quality Improvement Block Grants of $6,000 for Peachland, $6,000 for McGrath and $4,000 for Newhall State Preschools

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