CCSD chooses Savvas curriculum for English language arts

Published 12:00 pm Wednesday, April 27, 2022

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The Chambers County School Board approved new textbooks for English language arts at their meeting on Wednesday.

Dr. Sheila Jones, director of elementary education, explained how she and a committee had chosen the books.

“Savvas is the curriculum that we chose, and what I really wanted to quickly tell you is each school had a representative, and I’m really pleased with the process that we did in our district,” Jones said. “And I’ve actually been complimented for what we did in our district. So, I’m very proud of it that everybody was represented.”

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Jones said every school had several samples of textbooks to look through. Last week, representatives from each school told Jones which textbook they thought was best and why. Jones said the committee didn’t choose textbooks based on superficial things such as pictures and colors.

“What we did is every school was able to just dream big,” she said. “What would you want if you could just have any curriculum you want? So, all of those wants were put into one big pile and looked for commonalities, and from that, we created a rubric.”

Most schools represented chose Savvas.

Jones said the CCSD also happens to be using Savvas for math.

“I’m pleased with our decision,” she said. “I’m also pleased with the fact that with the direction we’re going in in our district with STEAM activities, that there’s project-based learning in this particular curriculum.”

Jones said the school district needs to better serve students who don’t speak English as a first language.

“And we will be able to have the curriculum, the text in Spanish,” she said.

In other business at the meeting, Chief Financial Officer Cassandra Allen explained the first budget amendment for fiscal year 2022. She said each board member had a couple of packets with different budgets in them. One contained budgets and budget adjustments for each of CCSD’s schools. The other packet focused on the central office budget.

“The only changes that we have made on this first budget were to include carry-over dollars,” Allen said, referring to the central office budget.

She explained that if the school district didn’t spend all of its federal money for 2021, the unspent money would carry over to the next year. She said the carry-over amount was about $280,000. She said the school district would lose the money if it wasn’t spent by Sept. 30.

“So, we’ll go ahead, and we’ll have to get it approved by the board before we can spend it, and we’ll have to spend it before Sept. 30,” she said. “They still have their original allocation for 2022. So, whatever they do not spend for 2022, it will also carry over, and we’ll be doing the same thing. We’ll do an amendment in order to spend those funds.”

At the beginning of the meeting, CCSD Superintendent Casey Chambley asked attendees to keep the family of former board president William B. Martin III in their thoughts and prayers.

“Mr. Martin passed away this past weekend,” Chambley said. “He was a long-standing 30-year board member for us, a great servant for our children. In honor and memory of him today, we are going to light a candle that will burn throughout this meeting today. And just everyone keep him in your thoughts and keep his family in your thoughts and prayers.”