Philip Thornton – Warwick School District
1. What’s the number one thing parents and students should know about this district this year?
The District has just completed a year of curriculum review in math and we are implementing materials and teacher training that are aligned to the national standards in grades K-8. Grades 9-12 math planning and new curriculum implementation will follow.
2. What is the biggest challenge your district faces?
Warwick Public Schools continue to face funding challenges. This year’s budget process found an increase in local funding of $3.985 million for the schools but still left the district cutting $3.7 million from the operating budget.
3. What is the vaccination rate for your district and what is your policy for opting out? Have you seen a spike or decline in the number of parents opting out over the last two years?
The District average vaccination rate is 86.46%. In looking at the previous year’s data, we have seen a 10% overall increase in immunizations over the past 3 years.
4. Some school districts in the state are banning electronic devices/cell phones. What is your current policy? Do you have plans to also ban electronic devices? If so, why?
The Warwick School Committee passed a policy last spring regarding cell phone use in schools. This policy takes effect fall of 2019.
5. Tell us something nobody knows about your district.
Social-Emotional Learning Initiatives: The Warwick School Department believes that teaching social and emotional skills is as important as teaching academic content. It is crucial for our schools and classrooms to be safe, positive and inclusive. In order to meet the social and emotional needs of students, two researched-based social-emotional programs are now being implemented. Responsive Classroom is being implemented at the elementary level and Engaging Schools is being implemented at the secondary level. These programs are designed to improve students’ attitudes and beliefs about themselves and foster respectful relationships with others. This ultimately results in students becoming more engaged in their academics due to a positive school culture.
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