Board approves new math program
The Saucon Valley School Board has approved the “Math in Focus” program for kindergarten through fourth grade students at the Saucon Valley ES at an initial cost of $227,946.
According to publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Math in Focus was built under a framework by Singapore’s Ministry of Education that draws on best practices from around the world through hands on learning, visualization and pictorial representations. Singapore has ranked as one of the top countries in math education in international assessments over the last several years.
Saucon chose the Math in Focus program after extensive research and comparisons to other math programs over a series of months. Teachers K through four, special ed teachers and an English language learner teacher were introduced to a couple of math programs to compare and contrast. After completing surveys, the clear winner from the teachers was Math in Focus.
According to Saucon Valley Superintendent Dr. Craig Butler “In the process of looking at these programs I took the opportunity to look at roughly 20 of the top performing schools in the state. Of the 20, the vast majority of those 20 schools use either Math in Focus or Go Math.”
Go Math is a similar program to Math in Focus, both of which are offered by the same publisher.
The plan is to introduce and train 32 teachers and administrators over the next couple of months.
In addition, the district plans to offer a “parent university” where the same trainer provided to the teachers will offer the parents a presentation along with materials.
In other news, high school Principal Beth Guarriello offered recognition to students in the SADD group (Students Against Destructive Decisions). Some of the issues SADD tries to combat is teen driving, traffic safety, mental health awareness and substance abuse.
Guarriello also introduced Saucon’s new academic seal which was designed via a contest by budding artist Nayoung IM. The seal was prominently displayed during this year’s graduation and graduation program.
Also, on hand were students from the middle school who competed in a contest against 29 other schools by producing a video called “What’s so Cool About Manufacturing.” They won an award for Outstanding Creativity.
Other acknowledgments received were the middle school’s Reading Olympics group for their reading of over 40 books and taking part in competitions. Also, the middle school’s Inclusion Group was acknowledged for their multicultural potluck dinner.