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Approve two more new high school courses, dance club performance trip to Disney World

March 14, 2019
By John Speer - Editor ( , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

A pair of new high school courses proposed by Dixie Forcht, South Tama schools secondary teacher librarian and district assessment coordinator. Entitled Research and Writing and Theatre Arts I, both will be added to the high school curriculum this fall.

School board members, on a 4-0 voice vote, approved the courses during their special session on Monday night, March 4. Members Ron Houghton, Jackie Dvorak, Penny Tyynismaa and Mandy Lekin voted in favor with member Alan Kline absent.

Both courses will be offered as electives. The writing class will be for grades 11 and 12 and the theatre class offered to all high shool students, grades 9-12.

Article Photos

ABOVE- Members of the South Tama Dance Team are pictured on their Facebook social media page. The newly-formed group has performed at half-time of South Tama basketball games this winter.

Research and Writing will be a two semester course with one-hour of credit aimed at students "seeking to improve" their skills in these aras.

Research and Writing is intended for "preparing students for life after graduation - improving skills in the use of physical and electronics resources, as writing to meet various purposes and appropriate stylistic guidelines in varying professions.

Theatre Arts I is described as a "basic course in performance for the stage. The course will introduce skills in acting, directing and technical aspects of productions." Additionally, they "will also develop an appreciation of theatrical productions, as well as participate in in-class productions."

Superintendent Jared Smith endorsed adding both of the courses and said the theatre course "fits with one of the strong areas in the district right now."

Dancers To Disney World

Approval was also received for a five-six day trip to Disney World at Orlando, Fla, for the South Tama Technicians Performance from April 8-13, 2020, on a 4-0 board voice vote. The dance team is newly formed and currently has 13 members.

3rd grade teacher Molly Tafta assisted by her husband, Joseph Tafta, high school juvenile court / school liaison are the sponsors.

The trip will include rehearsal and performance days, classes and workshops by Disney professionals, a learning opportunities day at Disney World- Epcot Tour of Counties and other venues and two travel days by air.

Cost is estimated at $1,887 per student.

A series of fund raising events accompanied the proposal ranging from school student body dances, dinners, sale of blankets and tote bags to "pie a Staff, Senor or Dancer."

In other business Monday the board:

heard a request from Carrie Keenan, Toledo, to consider providing Dyslexia Tutoring Programs in the schools. Supt. Smith said he will follow up to assess what is already in place and said he has heard additional calls for addressing programs.

accepted the resignation of Sarah Fitzsimmons, high school special education teacher at the end of the current school year and Nate Van Dyke as summer weight room supervisor.

approved final reading of Board Policy 200 revisions governing the school board operations and conduct with only minor changes to dates for annual meetings and consideration of conflict of interest policy.

approved as one-time board exception to a rule prohibiting after school activities on Wednesdays to allow for soccer matches with Clear creek-Amana to take place. Scheduling was affected due to the number of school days missed due to weather.



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