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Watkins board will go paperless

    WATKINS GLEN—The Watkins Glen school board approved to try going paperless at meetings, Monday, Oct. 3.
    Clerk Sharon Clark presented information to the board that she got from other district clerks in the GST BOCES region.  She explained the board members would have password protected access to meeting documents online, readable from anywhere.  She added the program, provided free through BOCES, puts the documents under different sections (educational matters, personnel, facilities), instead of just being in one large file online.  Clark added that at meetings board members would use laptops with all the reports cued up for discussion.
    Board President Brian O’Donnell said the state education department recommends this.  Clark added that they can try and do this for the next meeting, but she will also provide hard copies of the report since it will be the first time.  She added some districts that do this already still have some board members who use hard copies of reports.
    In other business:
    • Elementary and middle school principals, Rod Weeden and Kristine Somerville, said student progress reports will no longer be mailed out to parents, unless by request.  Somerville said the three and a half week reports will be available online, and given the current programs used by teachers to input grades, will offer much more up-to-date student grades.  Weeden added that parents sign up for the service and can only see their children’s grades.
    • The board heard from the student council.  The president is Charles Bascom, vice president is Shawn Bliss, secretary is Haley DeNardo, and treasurer is Natasha Patel.  Bascom talked about the planning they have done for this week’s homecoming events.  He added one concern the student council heard from students at the start of this year was having fewer teachers available and less open periods for help.  Bascom said the students are adjusting though.
    • Superintendent Tom Phillips announced two Watkins Glen students would be participating in the All-State concert in Rochester: Marguerite Kellogg and Sarah LaMascus.
    • Phillips also presented the board with the New York State School Board Association proposed bylaws and resolutions.  He said the board should read them over and decide what Watkins wants to support so NYSSBA representative O’Donnell can vote on them at the upcoming conference.
    • The board acknowledged a $8,400 watershed education program grant from Cargill, Inc.




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