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School District of Jefferson 10/11/21 Meeting Recap

On Monday night, the Jefferson County Board of Education held its meeting in the library of Jefferson High School. During this roughly two-hour meeting, the Board covered a wide variety of topics.

To start things off, the Student Nutrition Director, Kevin Dresdow, gave a report on the district’s food services. In his report, he detailed how the meals were handled for students during the previous academic year. This included preparing to-go bag lunches for students, both in school and available for curbside pickup by virtual learners. For the students who attended in-person classes, breakfast was available to eat in classrooms. Elementary students also took their lunches in classrooms, while middle and high school students were able to eat in their school cafeteria. In total, across all schools in the district, there were 164,389 breakfasts and 206,458 lunches served during the school year.

As for the 2021-2022 academic year, the food services team is focusing on moving “back to normal”. As part of this, now all lunches are served in the school cafeterias, even for the elementary students. Schools are also now able to offer more options for lunch, including more fresh foods, as opposed to the pre-wrapped options they’ve had the last year. For this school year, families will not have to pay for lunches, as all eligibility requirements for the free lunch program have been waived.

Dresdow closed his report by giving a quick overview of his plans for the department. He plans to survey students to gauge their response to changes in the program, offer more “made from scratch” items, and partner with local farmers to implement a farm-to-school program. He also plans to increase the presence of nutrition services team members in the classroom in order to teach healthy eating habits, as well as provide opportunities for cooking programs for students.

Following the food service report, IT director Jason Poeppel gave an overview of what the IT department has been up to. He provided a list to the Board of the various responsibilities of the four-person team, along with the third-party services they utilize to keep everything running smoothly. The district’s plan to replace technology was explained to those in attendance, with said plan being to replace Chromebooks about every 4 years, and projectors about every 7, as those are the respective lifespans of the devices.

Poeppel explained the big summer project for the department, ClassLink. This is an automation program that handles student accounts with a variety of services, such as Google Workspace and FitnessGram. Mainly, this saves everyone involved a lot of time.

The other big summer project was installing additional wireless access points in schools; however, this is projected to be completed in the coming weeks due to supply issues over the summer.

The Board also approved student applications for college credits for 2022. In this program, students can apply to take certain college courses while still in high school, such as Intrapersonal Communication or Marketing Principles. Students applying will have to meet with a school guidance counselor to determine what classes will benefit them, and what their best course of action will be.

During the meeting, the Board voted to move future meetings to an online livestream format. The Board decided to test-drive a cost-free method of video streaming for their next meeting, and it will be available for public viewing via A link will be provided on the Board of Education’s website.

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