CORBIN — The Corbin Board of Education got an update about Corbin Elementary School from Principal Chris Webb and Vice Principal Liberty Roberts at its monthly meeting Thursday evening at the school.

“I’ve got to brag on this staff,” said Webb. “I’ve never had a staff like this before that’s so driven. It’s hard to deter them from anything but what’s going on with our students.”

Webb informed the board about the school’s programs, including bringing back a drama club, the school’s after school program Save the Children - 21st Century Program.

Webb said the extracurricular activities at Corbin Elementary are the most he’s seen at the school since he’s been there.

The school now offers a fourth- and fifth-grade academic team, boys and girls basketball teams, Odyssey of the Mind teams, choir, archery, and the leadership group.

In honor of School Board Appreciation month, Corbin Elementary’s choir sang the song “You Raise Me Up” and presented the board with framed lyrics of the song as a gift.

Next Saturday the choir will travel to Cincinnati to watch a performance of the "Lion King" by Broadway Across America. The trip is possible thanks to a grant. The choir will perform their own version of the "Lion King" at Corbin’s Grace on the Hill Church in April.

The board was also given gifts by the elementary school’s Leadership team. The Leadership team was developed as a component of the Promise Neighborhood program.

Middle school math teachers John Smith, Joey Abner and Maggie Mahan gave a presentation over what they call the RED (Rigorous Engagement Daily) Model being implemented in the school’s seventh grade math classes.

The RED Model’s goal is to keep students engaged during math through the use of small groups, which also allows teachers to assist students on a more individualized level.

“The students have responded to it really well,” said Smith.

With the RED Model, each day of the week is broken down into specific tasks and materials to be covered. On Mondays students work on assignments while the teacher is able to pull small groups to work on more of an individualized manner. Smith says on Tuesdays teachers reteach, pre-teach, give students an opportunity to work on assignments and their practice problems. Wednesdays and Thursdays are for small groups with direct instruction and practice. Fridays are known as fraction Friday and students are given a weekly review quiz.

The quizzes students take every Friday are cumulative in the sense that a quiz in week five will include course material from weeks one through four, along with the material covered in week five.

This is beneficial during state testing, mentioned Corbin Middle School Assistant Principal Brad Lawson.

“With those weekly review quizzes, when you get to week 33 and you’re covering on the week 33 quiz, everything from week one to week 33. The next week is K-PREP. They’ve already done 33 K-PREPs. So many students after K-PREP, after the math [section] they’re like ‘that was easy. All that was, was just another quiz’,” said Lawson.

“Whenever I teach a lesson, I give them direct instruction and we do our practice, there will be kids that you know for a fact that they just didn’t get,” said Smith. “What is amazing [about the RED Model] is knowing that in a regular traditional class, I would have to move on and leave that kid behind, and try to help that kid whenever I’ve got time. Now that kid, that I know for a fact didn’t get it, is getting help that day, not the next day, not two days later. That kid is getting help that day.”

In other business, the board unanimously approved the operation items listed under the meetings agenda. Those items include the approval of travel of Board Members to KSBA functions; approval of the superintendent’s authority to declare surplus property less than $500; approval to accept the School Facilities Construction Commissions’ offer of assistance in the amount of $22,806, which will be used toward proposed construction or major renovations to facilities; approval of the resolution to employ the Chenoweth Law Office to represent the board on an as need basis; approval of the school calendar for the 2020-2021 school year; approval of student teacher agreement between the school district and the University of the Cumberlands; approval to apply for a Steele-Reese Foundation grant in the amount of $50,000; and approval to increase the Save the Children ESSS Coordinators’ pay to $15 per hour, utilizing the Save the Children ESSS grant funds.

The board also reviewed a drafted budget for the 2020-2021 school year. The board did not vote on the budget, as it is the first of three they will review this year.

Corbin Superintendent David Cox said he had been in contact with two auction companies in Corbin in researching the best way to sell the two buildings the school district no longer uses. “We had went through the process of talking amongst ourselves as the board and talking to KDE (Kentucky Department of Education) jumping through the hoops to sell the two buildings that we’re not using now, the old elementary and old intermediate school.”

Cox recommended to the board that they use Interstate Auction to sell the two buildings. The board unanimously approved Cox’s recommendation.

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