Behavior program dropped from Rogers City Area Schools

ROGERS CITY — Current and former Rogers City Area Schools teachers voiced their concerns about the the loss of MiBLISi status of the middle school and high school.

The teachers discussed their concerns during a school board workshop meeting Monday.

At the regular school board meeting earlier this month former Superintendent Dave O’Bryant discussed how the secondary school was dropped from the program.

Michigan’s Integrated Behavior and Learning Support Initiative, or MiBLISi, is a multi-tiered approach to reading skills and behavioral programs in Michigan schools.

The elementary school began the program nine years ago, the secondary school implemented the program five years ago.

Teacher Amy Nadolsky said a lot of elementary school resources and efforts by teachers have been used toward the program.

“To not have it continue into the secondary building is not acceptable. We need to give our students more than this. We need to look into why it’s not successful,” she said.

Retired teacher Mike Kosiara also spoke at the workshop.

“The secondary building is dropping MiBLISi and (Multi Tier System of Supports) because they’re not getting the level of support they need from the secondary building to continue it. My question is has anyone asked the secondary building why?” he said.

He said the teachers involved in the program lose so much contact time with students.

“They’re out of school for five, 10, 15 times a year for conferences. They come back and they were like ‘it seemed like a waste of time.’ Student outcomes are enhanced with teachers in the classroom,” he said.

He said with teachers in the classrooms and a principal in the building actions get consistent consequences.

“Maybe you should look at the school improvement plan. Maybe we should reconsider MiBLSi. Personally I think it’s ineffective,” he said.

Nadolsky said the teachers who work on the program are dedicated.

“This initiative has totally changed how we do things at the elementary building. Things that have been changed are the expectations we have of all Hurons. We expect students to be honest, under control, respectful, on task and nice,” she said. “Each classroom has a 90 minute uninterrupted reading block as well as a 60 minute math time. Each student receives assessments three times a year to determine how they are progressing throughout the school year and are placed into the appropriate intervention groups based on individual needs.”

She said because MiBLISi is part of the school district improvement plan, and state and federal funds are tied to the plans, without this in place a new plan would have to be written.

Board President Ivy Cook said she thinks more research needs to be done.

“Maybe it’s not working for the secondary and is working for elementary. I mean it was at the elementary first. I think what we’re going to do is more research,” Cook said.

Jordan Spence can be reached via email at jspence@thealpenanews.com or by phone at 358-5687.