The May 17 meeting of the Santa Monica Malibu School District will focus on curriculum and instruction with several items directly related to classroom activities including plans for English Learners, updates on American Cultures/Ethnic Studies requirements and new classes. The agenda also covers physical improvements to several campuses.

Seeking to further support English learners within the district, The Santa Monica Malibu School District will present a “clear and accessible roadmap” in their revision to their Master Plan for English Learners. The presented revisions will take place at a board meeting this Thursday, May 16.

According to the board meeting’s agenda, the Master Plan for English Learners was last approved during the 2004-2005 school year. Within the last four years, educational services members and staff have refined the plan. The State Board of Education adopting the California Roadmap for English Learners policy in July 2017 has prompted a further refinement.

In the agenda report, SMMUSD says their goal with this refinement will be to “provide the highest level of support to our English Learners to ensure students are well-prepared for the 21st Century workforce.”

An overview of the presentation in the agenda’s report with shows there will be identification, placement, assessment, instruction and progress monitoring of English learners within the SMMUSD. Resources for families, students, and staff will be provided as well.

Dr. Amy Teplin, Literacy and Language Coordinator for the district, consulted school and district staff as well as the District English Learner Advisory Committee to in putting together the refinements to the plan.

Another topic of note on the agenda includes an update to the Social Justice Framework and Action plan approved in February. The presentation will present progress made and any adjustments staff will make moving forward. Next steps for the framework plan include expanding training, developing workshops for families on social justice topics and standards, deepening work with Samohi, and eventually beginning implementation of the program with Malibu High.

At the Middle School level, John Adams Middle School is proposing a new journalism class and two courses are proposed for high school students (data science and senior seminars).

JAMS is also on the agenda for the proposed replacement of the school’s auditorium. The current facility has been closed since 2014 and the board will be asked to approve a multi-phase project that would occur over several years.

“The Proposed Project would increase overall building square footage of performing arts uses by approximately 12,177 square feet, but, no additional uses would be added. While the Proposed Project will also not increase the number of students or faculty at JAMS, there may be an increase in the frequency of events held at the new auditorium, which is expected to occur on weekends and holidays,” said the agenda.

The Board will also consider forming a School Facilities Improvement District for Santa Monica.

“The formation of the Santa Monica – SFID is necessary to allow the Santa Monica Schools communities greater independence in facility planning, projects and funding. If the SFID is formed and a bond measure is approved by SFID voters, proceeds of the Bonds may only be used for projects in that SFID,” said the staff report.

The board previously approved forming a district for Malibu at its May 3 meeting.

Budget revisions and informational items on district residency policies are also on the agenda.

The Board will meet at the District Office, 1651 16th Street at 5:30 p.m. on May 17.

angel@smdp.com

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