New superintendent meets community, prepares for school year
Incoming Wrangell School District Superintendent Patrick Mayer is busy meeting residents and preparing for his first school year when State mandated education standards will change the curriculum and teacher evaluations.
“A big part of my job is getting to know the people in the community,” Mayer said. “There’s a lot of things to do always, but in particular our focus is going to be transitioning to Alaska’s new standards in language arts and math and to implement a new teacher evaluation system.”
It’s a big task that requires a collaborative effort, Mayer said.
“Those are two pretty tall orders,” Mayer said. “We’ll probably spend the entire year working on that.”
Mayer said the curriculum changes are more rigorous than the current standards and advance students about one grade level.
“That’s just an estimate, but I believe that to be true having looked at them (curriculum standards),” Mayer said. “Many of the standards that were in place for second grade, now you see those in first grade.”
District staff will also develop teacher evaluation models based on other models around the state. The models are based partially on student achievement that Alaska must conform to since it was granted a waiver from the No Child Left Behind Act –a federal mandate that included standards-based education evaluations.
Mayer arrived in Wrangell June 25 and spent the last five years working as a principal in Delta Junction, Alaska.