JAMESTOWN – A new policy to provide public school students with better opportunities was adopted by the Jamestown Board of Education last week.
Jamestown Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Kevin Whitaker says the new strategy supports students, especially those currently and historically marginalized, so they experience a sense of belonging and find academic success.
He says roadblocks are often not intentional, but rather systemic.
“Pathways of courses that the school system currently follows may begin in 6th grade and end at 11th grade, and there’s no way to move between the different pathways,” he said.
Whitaker explains that the new policy, among other things, will direct leaders to examine the current course schedule, and adjust as needed.
“This new policy would allow for students to transition as they grow and mature,” furthered Whitaker. “A student who was originally interested in English or art could eventually transition into being interested in math. This policy is a way to make that possible.”
The idea was first introduced by New York State’s School Board Association, who created an equity task force.
Whitaker says his job is to influence leaders, community members and kids to help them succeed, and, while the Board has more of a financial responsibility, the district is still committed to doing the best for students.