January 19, 2021

Board Hears Impact of COVID - Return to Thriving Report

As the district continues to manage the response to the pandemic, we are also looking toward recovery. Dr. Sutfin detailed the learning gap last night with the Board and said that frequency, intensity, and duration will be key elements to improving student learning as we address the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The learning disruption began on March 13, 2020 with the closure of schools. During the 2020-21 school year, the district has offered concurrent remote learning. More than 4,000 students began the school year remotely. That number has decreased by 25% as the school year has progressed. Additionally more than 1,100 students and staff members have had COVID during some point in the year with another 4,500 student and staff members being required to quarantine after being identified as a a close contact to a COVID positive individual.

Dr. Sutfin acknowledged the tremendous effort put forth by teachers and staff to keep our buildings open and maximize learning despite the disruption caused by the pandemic. In reviewing the data, the MAP test scores for students from last fall to this fall show a dip in reading and math. The good news is that recovery is already underway. Being in school this year has been helpful with this winter's MAP scores showing the gaps are closing. But recovery work still needs to be done.

The high school failure rates for students also reflected the impact of the pandemic. In looking at high school students who experienced failing grades in two or more classes, in-person students had an 11.4% failure rate for the fall. This was an increase from past years which had been at 8.6% in 2018-19 and 8.9% in 2019-20. Remote high school students experienced a much higher failure rate of two or more classes at 32.6%.

The district is using our strategic planning process to close the gap. On January 13, 2021, a team of building and district leaders gathered to determine priorities. Detailed planning has begun for the 2021-22 school year including reteaching, interventions, summer school, communication with our families and targeted professional development for our staff.

Remote students are welcome to return at any point, and parents are urged to closely monitor their child's academic progress and reach out to the school if they have any questions. Together as one community, we can continue to move forward with our response to COVID-19 and ensure our students' continued academic and social-emotional development.

Board Receives Strategic Planning Update

Millard has used Strategic Planning and Site Planning as the mechanism for school improvement since the 1989-1990 school year. We wrote a new Strategic Plan in 2017-2018 and began implementation in 2018-2019.

The current plan includes the following strategies:

  • We will engage the Millard Education Community to maximize resources in order to address our financial challenges and better achieve our mission and objectives.
  • We will develop and implement plans to differentiate and expand our instructional delivery systems to meet each student's needs in a changing world.
  • In cooperation with family and community, we will address the behavioral and mental health needs of our students by implementing systematic practices that promote good character, positive social behavior, and responsible citizenship.

We are now in the fourth year of our implementation of our strategic plan. Next year will be the fifth year of the implementation, and we are targeting the summer of 2022 to write our new plan.

Nominate Your Favorite Person Today!

The MPS Foundation is now accepting nominations for the 2021 Awards of Excellence. Click here and nominate your favorite teacher, support staff member, volunteer or administrator today!
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Welcome to Millard!

The following teachers will be joining us in the 2021-22 school year:
  • Brett A. Friesen – Computer Applications Teacher at Central Middle School
  • Keegan R. Case – Science Teacher at Millard South High School
  • Catherine C. Green – Special Education Teacher at Kiewit Middle School
  • Robin D. McKenzie – Special Education Teacher at Beadle Middle School
  • Mackenzie L. Harte – Special Education Resource Teacher at Millard West High School

Thank You for Your Service!

The following employees will resign from their positions at the end of the school year:
  • Amber N. Schrunk – Special Education Teacher at Beadle Middle School
  • Jessica L. Barr – Special Education Teacher at Bryan Elementary School.

The following employees will retire at the end of the school year:

  • Anne M. Servais – Kindergarten Teacher at Disney Elementary School
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