Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

August 9, 2012

Goshen introducing a new preschool, new principals and safety

GOSHEN — A new school year brings about a lot of change, and this year is no exception.

All of the elementary schools are providing school supplies to each of their students, something that only Title I schools had been doing prior to this year. However, parents are still encouraged to provide items such as bookbags and tennis shoes.

“We found that supplies are cheaper to buy in bulk, plus with the economy, we thought it would be a good way to help the parents out,” said Prairie View Principal Tracey Noe.

The school board approved in June a new early childhood education program that will provide nearly 70 preschool-aged children with the opportunity to participate in a corporation-led preschool program next school year. Prairie View will house that program, which allowed them to hire two new staff members.

“We’re excited to have those kids here,” Noe said.

Another change taking place at Prairie View involves the way parents will be able to pick up their children. Parents are encouraged to use the back entrance of the school to pick up their children in the afternoons, leaving the front of the school for those who are taking the buses.

“We had instances last year where the safety of our students was compromised, so we wanted to make sure to avoid that this year,” Noe said.

As a school that is about to receive Title I status, Waterford Elementary is going to undergo some changes, though Principal Kim Gallagher is still in wait-and-see made as it pertains to those.

“There will be new staffing coming at some point,” she said.

Some of the schools in the corporation have seen significant changes in staffing this year, especially at leadership positions. Two of the six elementary schools in the corporation (Chandler and Chamberlain) have principals beginning their first year, with a third (Prairie View) who has a principal who took over in January. Kimberly Branham takes over for retired Principal Don Jantzi at Chamberlain Elementary, while Roy Hufford is the new principal at Chandler Elementary, replacing Lisa Lederach, who took a job in Indianapolis. Not to mention Barry Younghans taking over at the high school for retired Principal Jim Kirkton.

“The transition has been phenomenal,” Branham — who came from the Baugo School Corp. — said of her new position.

While some of these changes may seem like minute details, Branham said that they have a big picture in mind.

“It’s all about moving forward to continue to do whats best for students,” Branham said.

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Goshen City Council member Dixie Robinson is asking residents to make an effort to clean up their yards this spring. The city’s Dial-A-Truck program is available to haul trash away. Do you think there are more unsightly properties in Goshen this year than five years ago?

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