WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – Students will notice several changes when they return to school Wednesday, including 45 new faculty members across the district, a new elementary school math program, a pre-engineering program at the high school, and the proposed $48.2 million project to renovate district buildings.
The latter will require a bond and, therefore, will go to a public vote Oct. 23. There are 11 district buildings that would have work done, including roofing, masonry and other renovations totaling $22.5 million at Eastview School alone. Another $200,000 would upgrade district playgrounds, while $4.8 million would add WiFi capability to the schools.
A more certain change will be seen in the district's elementary schools. To prepare students for more rigorous standardized tests in 2013, the White Plains School district will roll out the enVision MATH program this year, which is more in line with the state's common core standards, said Schools Superintendent Christopher Clouet.
In 2011-2012, White Plains' third- through eighth-graders scored slightly higher overall on the state English Language Arts and math tests taken in the spring, according to results released by the state Education Department on July 17. This school year, the state Education Department will implement the Regents Reform Agenda, which Clouet said will make the tests even more difficult.
The White Plains High School will add a pre-engineering program that allows students to apply math and science skills to real world problems. Clouet said this is a part of Project Lead The Way, a national provider of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs used in middle and high schools. The White Plains class, to be taught by Al Martinez, is full and ready to get started, Clouet said.
“We want to give kids more opportunities to engage in STEM course work,” Clouet said. “This is one that has a successful track record around the country. It attracts kids that are interested in engineering. We know not everyone will go to engineering school, but we know a lot kids will.”
Finally, among the new faculty members in the district, is Ellen Doherty, the new high school principal.
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