Feb 8, 2023 | Local

Enrollment up in Rim schools

By Mary-Justine Lanyon

Jenny Haberlin, the chief business official for the Rim of the World Unified School District, shared some good news at the Jan. 26 meeting of the school board.

Enrollment in the district was up seven students over the same time last year – 2,885 students.

The ADA (average daily attendance) was also up at just over 2,600. The district continues to strive for 95 percent attendance and has been averaging 93 percent. Rim High was #1 in the latest comparison at 95.03 percent.

Haberlin also presented information on a proposed expanded learning opportunities program. The available funds cannot be used for virtual programs, she said, but must be used for in-person learning for students in kindergarten through sixth grade. The funds allocated by the state for the 2021-2022 school year – $602,466 – must be spent by June 30, 2023. And the funds allocated for the 2022-2023 school year – $1,562, 632 – must be spent by June 30, 2024.

On school days, the expanded learning can take place before and/or after school. When added to the core school day, the program would total nine hours. The expanded learning must also take place over the course of at least 30 non-school days, with learning taking place each day for no less than nine hours.

There are two components to the expanded learning: an educational and literacy element and an educational enrichment element.

The educational and literacy element may take place in one or more of these areas: language arts, mathematics, history and social science, computer training or science.

The educational enrichment element may include fine arts, career technical education, recreation, physical fitness and prevention activities.

Staff overseeing expanded learning must meet the district’s minimum qualifications for an instructional aide.

Haberlin said she imagines the program as being academic in the morning with athletics and fun – art, drama – in the afternoon. The program could be used for learning recovery during summer school.

The district’s plan – which Superintendent Dr. Kimberly Fricker said is being worked on – should be reviewed every three years, examining the program goals, program content, outcome measures and other information that may be requested by the California Department of Education.

According to the California Department of Education, “expanded learning means before school, after school, summer or intersession learning programs that focus on developing the academic, social, emotional and physical needs and interests of pupils through hands-on, engaging learning experiences.

“It is the intent of the legislature that expanded learning programs are pupil centered, results driven, include community partners and complement – but do not replicate – learning activities in the regular school day and school year.”

The funding provided to the district may be used to hire literacy coaches, tutors, school counselors and instructional day teachers and aides to assist students.

When the expanded learning opportunities program is finalized, it will come before the school board for approval. It will then be posted on the district’s website.

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