Voice Recognition

Article: Message from Scott Smith, Superintendent

Message from Scott Smith, Superintendent

The Mapleton Local School District Board of Education has placed a 0.75% earned income tax levy on the May 2, 2023 ballot. This five year levy will raise $1,002,992 annually for district operations. These funds will be earmarked for personnel, programs, services, equipment and supplies related to our four commitments: 1) providing a family atmosphere, 2) expanding opportunities for our students, staff and community, 3) emphasizing and addressing the individual needs of all our students, and 4) providing honest communication to all of our stakeholders. Specifically, these funds will be used to maintain and create new opportunities related to student services, special education, gifted education, family and community engagement, literacy, and STEA2M (science, technology, engineering, arts, agriculture and mathematics).

Student Services
Student Services includes personnel, programs and services related to pK-12 guidance counselors, school-community liaisons, and school-based therapist (Appleseed Community Mental Health Center), school resource officer (Ashland County Sheriff’s Office), district nurse (psi Associates), occupational therapist and physical therapist (EJ Therapy), speech-language pathologist, Little Mounties STEA2M Preschool, and other related services (KidsLink Neurobehavior Center).

Special Education
Special Education includes personnel, programs, services, assistive technology, adaptive equipment and accessible surfaces on our playgrounds, and transportation (wheelchair accessible van) related to the specific needs of students identified with disabilities and requirements within the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. This also includes an increase in hours and/or additional staffing related to our special education director, school psychologist, intervention specialists, intervention tutors, and paraprofessionals.

Gifted Education
Gifted Education includes personnel, programs, services, resources and high quality professional development related to providing alternative, unique academic opportunities for students who have been identified as performing at remarkably high levels of accomplishments. Gifted Education occurs across all three schools and often it includes many Mapleton High School students participating in College Credit Plus (CCP).

Family and Community Engagement
Family and Community Engagement is a crucial part of helping our students achieve academic success. The Mapleton Local School District, in partnership with families and the community, strives to meet the needs of all students by providing a healthy, safe, engaging, and supportive environment for the physical and mental health of our students and staff.  This includes personnel, supports, resources and
equipment related to school safety, school climate and culture, self-care, mental and physical health services, nutrition, social-emotional learning, health education, and physical education.

Literacy is a high priority for the Mapleton Local School District and the Ohio Department of Education as outlined in Ohio’s Plan to Raise Literacy Achievement. The district is committed to implementing a systematic, structured literacy program that is content-knowledge
based and includes explicit instruction. Literacy coaches and additional intervention tutors and paraprofessionals, especially at Mapleton Middle School and Mapleton High School, are essential to improving literacy achievement within our Multi-Tiered Systems of Supports (MTSS) at each of the three schools.

Science-Technology-Engineering-Arts-Agriculture-Mathematics knowledge, skills, programs and opportunities are important to the 21st century student. The Mapleton Local School District received a $450,000 Expanding Opportunities for Each Child competitive grant in 2019 to add programs, equipment, supplies and curriculum that expanded our STEA2M offerings. Additional funding is required to maintain
and expand courses, curriculum, drones, 3D printers, laser engravers, CNC routers, eSports, robotics, technology and other STEA2M equipment and supplies for our students to use as they are preparing for enlistment, enrollment in a two our four-year school, college or university and/or employed immediately after graduation. Unfortunately, STEA2M related courses are stagnant due to a lack of staffing at Mapleton Middle School and Mapleton High School. This is a direct result of a reduction in staff over the past five years. 

We are making great strides in providing valuable services and opportunities for our students, staff and community in the areas of student services, special education, gifted education, family and community engagement, literacy and STEA2M, but we have a lot more that we can and must do. It is extremely important for the district to have the ability to sustain and ultimately create new opportunities for our students in order for them to acquire the necessary knowledge and skills required to achieve their goals in an ever changing world.

Scott Smith

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