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story.lead_photo.caption Presenting certificates: Landrey Harrell, vice president of the El Dorado High School Student Council, presents certificates of appreciation to El Dorado School board members, Wayne Gibson, Susan Turbeville, Chris Lutman, Vicky Dobson and Keith Smith during the monthly meeting of the school board. January has been named Arkansas School Board Member Recognition Month. Other board members are Renee Skinner and Todd Whatley.

Janice McIntyre

City Editor

EL DORADO — The track at Memorial Stadium in El Dorado will hopefully be ready before track season in the next couple of months, said Jim Tucker, superintendent of the El Dorado School District.

The track around the stadium has been undergoing renovations for several months – off and on to allow for events at the stadium – and Tucker told members of the El Dorado School Board Monday night that to complete improvements, the weather has to be above 50 degrees and dry for work to continue. He also said that workers will spray the surface of the track, which will need to cure at least a week before activities can continue on the track.

Replacement of the track began last June and included removing the old surface and installing a new base and and in August, Phillip Lansdell, athletic director for the school district, said because of the weather and the curing system, the new track would not be installed until after the football season. At that time the track was still open to walkers and joggers who frequently use the track around the stadium.

“Where learning is a world class adventure,” is the theme and vision for Northwest Elementary School, Principal Sherry Floss told members of the board. She explained that students have “destination days,” which have included, El Dorado, Arkansas, Brazil, Canada, the North Pole, China, Mexico, Great Britain, France and numerous other countries.

At Northwest this year, students use EduTyping Jr. – a curriculum that introduces new keys by rows where students first learn the middle row, then the top row and the bottom row of the keyboard and designed with a strong focus on sight and high frequency words – and Moby Max – which finds and fixes learning gaps with the power of personalized learning with an individualized education plan for each student, according to the EduTyping Jr. and Moby Max websites. Floss said Moby Max introduces an interactive game that includes literacy and math based on standards.

She said students also use Bee-Bots for computer coding, Ipads and Chromebooks for computer based assessments. She said starting today, tutoring will be offered before school and according to Floss, over 70 students in grades three and four have participated in tutoring at the school, along with over 35 first and second graders.

“We have world class students with world class behavior,” the Northwest principal said, explaining there are three world class classes every month. She also said an Accelerated Reader fundraiser is being planned to be held in the South Arkansas Arboretum. “We want students to explore new adventures and enjoy life,” she told board members.

Paul Stolle, the new director of Aramark Food Services – a company that provides unique menus and programs for the school district – was introduced and said the company “wants to entice more kids to eat” lunches and offer a different variety of foods for students.

Members of the board accepted the low bid of $12,496 from Arkansas Insurance to purchase School Leaders Errors and Omissions Liability Insurance for the district and approved a legal transfer for a student from the El Dorado School District to the Smackover-Norphlet School District.

“We are blessed in El Dorado to have these school board members who have a heart for students,” Tucker said, in recognition of Arkansas School Board Member Recognition Month. “They put in their own time and this is not an easy job – they do it for free and make difficult decisions. We are blessed,” he said, adding that the El Dorado School Board received an Outstanding Board Award. Members of the board are Wayne Gibson (president), Susan Turbeville (vice president), Renee Skinner, Vicky Dobson, Todd Whatley, Keith Smith and Chris Lutman.

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