Along with an agenda that listed an administrator's report of items on personnel changes, contracts for "The Nutrition Group," budgets, building alterations, field trips, coaches and the need of another speech therapist position in the school district, there were also four individuals who spoke about the "We Care Elementary" and "Sexual Abuse Free Environment for Teens" programs and their concerns with the district's transparency.
Not including the school board members, the administrators, the three members of the press and a presenter from The Nutrition Group, 16 people attended Monday's Oil City School Board non voting meeting that was moved in the cafeteria at Hasson Heights Elementary School.
The four who spoke during the public comment section reiterated many of the same points brought up a few weeks ago in which they said a lessons being used by the district were not approved by the board, thus going against district policy. Since then, the district offered clarity to what they admit is a confusing use of the term curriculum by school officials and the public.
The confusion, one of the evening's commenters Jerry Burns pointed out. was from the district's frequent use of the term curriculum up until just recently. Last week, in a curriculum committee meeting, Superintendent Lynda Weller explained the administrators' overuse of the term curriculum and differentiated between a curriculum that requires board approval and resources, sometimes referred to as curriculum, that do not.
After the meeting, school board president Joseph McFadden expressed that he didn't recall hearing that point of view from the parents before.
He also asked the board if they wanted to discuss anything involving the current two lessons still scheduled to be taught. Board member Lawrence Sterner asked about terms in the lessons, wanting clarification and definitions. Kerr offer to cooridinate with the administration and the PPC Violence Free Network, who administers the lessons in question, to get answers for Sterners and other members of the board.
Kerr also recommended a committee chaired by board member Tyler Johnson that will include public input to discuss policies of how and when students and/or parents can opt out of certain lessons.
The next meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m Monday March 27.