Last updated: October 14. 2013 11:37PM - 1955 Views
GERI GIBBONS Times Leader Correspondent

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DALLAS TWP. — The Dallas School Board on Monday night received an update on cyber school services available to the district’s students.

Brian Bradshaw and Jennifer Lamoreaux, coordinators of the program, said it improved the quality of education available. Students can work online either from home or within their home school buildings to access classes otherwise unavailable to them.

The program, titled “Edgenuity,” meets all Pennsylvania Department of Education standards, and will align with district curricula. Bradshaw, high school vice principal, said career and technical center students utilize the program to facilitate work their schedules.

The district’s cyber school can be used by students with Individual Educational Plans and by gifted students. Students can choose a hybrid program, which allows them to mix online and “brick-and-mortar” classes. Currently, 124 students participate.

“The program is cost-effective when compared with the cost of students utilizing non-district cyber programs, which then bill the district,” said Lamoreaux.

“The state is encouraging students to become familiar with an online learning environment to benefit them in the future,” said board member Cathy Wega.

In another matter, Paul Reinert, principal of Wycallis Elementary, said the school received the National Blue Ribbon award by the U.S. secretary of education.

Reinert said the award honors public and private elementary school where students perform at a high level and improvements are seen in students’ level of achievement. He said the support of the school board made the award possible.

Also, resident Jane Tolomello questioned the response of the district on Sept. 26 during a controlled release of natural gas during a company’s work on a nearby pipeline. Williams, the construction company overseeing the project, failed to communicate with the district and the strong smell of an odorant added to the gas became a cause for concern, making its way into the schools’ ventilation system.

“Williams has promised to communicate with us more effectively in the future,” said district Superintendent Frank Galicki, “and we will also be clarifying our response procedures.”

“Administrators and teachers would put themselves in harm’s way before we put our students in any danger,” said board member Charles Preece.

The next meeting of the board is scheduled for Nov. 18 at 7 p.m.

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