Sulphur Springs to discuss assemblies, professional development, hearing tests

Sulphur Springs Union School District administrative offices. Nikolas Samuels/The Signal

Planetarium assemblies, professional development and hearing tests are on the docket for the Sulphur Springs Union School District’s governing board meeting Tuesday.

Among other items, the district is looking at approving planetarium assemblies for students at Pinetree, Mitchell, Mint Canyon, Leona Cox and Canyon Springs community schools.

The assembly involves an inflatable dome being set up indoors, and students, from the inside of the dome, receiving a lesson about the universe through the use of a digital planetarium projector, according to Mobile Ed Productions Inc.’s website.

The cost is $895 per performance and is set to be paid for with Title IV grant funds, according to the meeting agenda.

“We have great opportunities with Title IV grant money, and one of them is to provide great opportunities for our students,” said Denis DeFigueiredo, president of the SSUSD board. “The opportunities to get involved in science are not always the easiest to find, and if we can bring it into our school site, and get the kids literally immersed in science, it’s exciting for them.”

The board is also set to look at an agreement for consulting services with MD Solutions to provide professional development for math teachers at Pinetree and Sulphur Springs.

Pinetree’s program will cost $8,800 while Sulphur Springs will cost $22,000. Both will be paid with Low Performing Block Grant funds, according to the agenda.

“Those who have already sat with (Dr. Michele Douglass) have come away energized and excited and have immediately implemented new techniques for teaching in their classrooms that have really made a difference in student achievement,” DeFigueiredo said.

The board is also looking at an agreement with local company Arcadia Audiometrics to conduct hearing screenings. The district is required to conduct three hearing screenings for every student during elementary school, and the district has historically required the districts’ credentialed nurses to conduct the screenings.

Paid for through the general fund, the cost per student screened is $2.75, and the total annual cost is not to exceed $6,600, according to the agenda.

“We have two school school nurses (who) are great at what they do,” DeFigueiredo said. “And we wanted to take this off their shoulders so they can continue to take care of the needs of our students.”

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