Curriculum that directly impacts the classroom

On Tuesday, Nov. 6, district voters will be asked to support our learners by approving two levy questions. One of the levy questions includes $400,000 for “Curriculum that directly impacts the classroom.” For those not familiar with curriculum and its vital importance to education, I would like to explain why the money is needed.

The simplest definition of curriculum is “all that is taught in schools,” which means curriculum is, in short, everything teachers use to empower student learning. The curriculum serves as a guide for instruction, much like a flight plan guides a pilot’s decisions and, like a flight plan, curriculum needs to be altered to meet changing conditions and demands.

Currently, our district reviews and updates each subject’s curriculum every 10 years, which may have been appropriate many years ago, but with the world — and especially technology — changing so rapidly, a decade between curriculum reviews is woefully inadequate. If approved, the levy will allow us to reduce the time between curriculum reviews to seven years, which is more in keeping with the students’ changing world.

The more frequent seven-year cycle will allow our teachers to be trained in contemporary educational methods with up-to-date materials, resources, and technology; thereby, ensuring that our students continue to receive the same education that has elevated district achievement scores to among the best in the state.

If approved, the curriculum request, in combination with the approval of the other levy requests, will allow District 728 to continue accomplishing its mission, which is to educate, inspire and empower all of our learners, to shape their futures and accomplish their dreams. To learn more, visit our website at www.elkriver.k12.mn.us/2012levy. — Jolene Jorgensen, Otsego (Editor’s note: Jorgensen is the chair of the Elk River Area School Board.)


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