The Gettysburg Area School Board has approved a change to its library media policy that will allow parents to specify material that their children may not read. The new policy instructs the school system staff to develop a system that will allow parents to specify books their children shouldn’t have access to.
Despite the potentially-contentious nature of the topic, the unanimous vote occurred without citizen comments, crowds, or questions from the board members.
Before the vote, superintendent Jason Perrin congratulated the students, staff, and parents for their work on last weekend’s musical “Pippin.” “This is always a tremendous amount of work,” said Perrin. “They really knocked it out of the park.”
Board member Al Moyer added his praise for the cast and crew and acknowledged the work done by board member Michelle Smyers, her family, and other volunteers. Moyer said the team prepared “huge amounts of food, including an entire Thanksgiving dinner,” to feed the cast and crew.
Assistant Superintendent Jeffrey Matzner announced that the district is evaluating a new reading program for possible system-wide adoption. The program, known as “Amplify,” is currently being piloted by several teachers. The materials will be available for evaluation in the superintendent’s conference room.
The program is described by its developers as “a digital reading program that engages students with high-quality digital content that supports learning and literacy, reflects diverse experiences, feeds curiosity, and develops key social and emotional skills in a creative way.”
In other actions, the board approved hiring new bus drivers, a revised emergency preparedness plan, and several purchasing policies.
The evening’s informational items included an announcement that the Adams County Technical Institute is conducting a feasibility study that might end with them moving into their own building. The goal is to develop ways to alleviate overcrowding and allow ACTI to develop new programs. The district’s long-term demographic study, which predicts growth and demographic trends, will be updated as part of the research.
The district reported that a group of 18 students will travel to Somerset County’s Seven Springs Mountain Resort in April to compete in the state technology competition.
Leon Reed, freelance reporter, is a former US Senate staff member, defense consultant, and history teacher. He is a seven year resident of Gettysburg, where he writes military history and explores the park and the Adams County countryside. He is the publisher at Little Falls Books, chaired the Adams County 2020 Census Complete Count Committee and is on the board of SCCAP and the local Habitat for Humanity chapter. He and his wife, Lois, have 3 children, 3 cats, and 5 grandchildren.