School Board Meeting Wrap-Up

June 04, 2010

The following is from the May 25 meeting of the Laguna Beach Unified School District Board of Education.

GATE students create 'hero' films

Assistant Supt. of Instructional Services Nancy Hubbell presented details of the MyHero Gate program, which teaches students in the Gifted and Talented Education program at Top of the World Elementary, El Morro Elementary and Thurston Middle schools how to create films about their personal heroes.

The MyHero Film Project involves students from around the world.

Project founder Jeanne Myers, along with Director of Media Arts Education Wendy Milette, presented clips from Laguna Beach High and Thurston students' award-winning films during a Board of Education meeting last spring, where TOW Principal Ron LaMotte said he immediately saw the project's potential for elementary students in the district's GATE program.

These students are now working in collaborative teams to produce original films under Milette's guidance, and are responsible for every aspect of the production from initial idea to filming, to editing the final product.


"It is a wonderful opportunity for our students to be active learners creating original work," Hubbell said.

La Motte shared the success of the program at TOW.

"The MY HERO project fits perfectly with our commitment to providing our GATE students with a unique opportunity to work together on a project that encompasses any and all areas of giftedness," he said.

Data used to measure student success

Supt. Robert Fraisse presented the outline of the district's plan to assess how well it is performing in key areas, what is working and what should be changed.

District staff has identified a number of data measures for a pilot effort to produce a document by June 30 for the Board and Leadership Team.

"We need to be clear on what we intend to measure each year to have enough data on enough topics to critically evaluate our district," Fraisse said. "The goal is to increase the number of things we will measure based upon [district] priorities and to collect the data and present it in a one-source document for staff and the public.

"We will disaggregate the data and see how many students are improving from basic to proficient so that we see trend lines. We'd like to get data on every student and see what percentage of our students made one or more years' growth in each subject."

In the younger grades, he said, it is important to know if a student is not making annual progress so that proper intervention can take place.

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