BEATRICE – The new Superintendent for Beatrice Public Schools called it a “whirlwind of a week”, getting his feet on the ground and getting to know the community and school system.
Jason Alexander became Superintendent as of July 1st, coming to the community from Ord Public Schools, where he was the top administrator.
:28 “is behind the school”
The administrative structure of the district changed this year with Alexander as the Superintendent, and Dr. Jackie Nielsen as Assistant Superintendent. The position of Business Manager was melded into the Superintendent position.
At Monday night’s board of education meeting, several policy issues received first reading. Many are adjustments or new policies to account for changes in state law. One is a requirement that school officials crossing a state line for competitions are required to report any evidence they see, of child abuse. The new rules stem from the effort to address human sex trafficking.
:20 “that’s done”
Another policy details search and seizure steps, schools can take. Alexander says it serves as notice that students and their parents shouldn’t expect privacy of student items while on school grounds.
:38 “in there”
Another policy getting first reading before the board Monday night deals with the district’s random drug testing policy for students, who seek to be involved in activities. This past year the district adopted a random mandatory testing policy. Alexander commended the board for adopting it.
:36 “not use, anymore”
One policy change that Alexander says may cause some concern from parents, is a state law passed this year requiring each Nebraska public school to develop policies to facilitate reading instruction and intervention, based on individual student performance. There are exceptions for services already provided.
The district must develop reading plans for students who struggle with reading in kindergarten through third grade. The policy will require that once the deficiency is recognized, parents will be notified by letter, within fifteen days.
:29 “notify parents”
Alexander says much of that change is already in place within the district when it comes to intervention with students who are struggling.