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Restructuring Plan Presented at Special BOE Meeting

The Canton City School District will see an ambitious restructuring for the 2021-2022 school year if the Designing for Excellence plan is approved by the Board of Education next month.

The proposed plan will gain efficiencies for the district in a manner that allows it to improve teaching and learning, improve courses and extracurricular/co-curricular offerings, and create more choices for students and families, Superintendent Jeffery Talbert said Wednesday evening.

“Typically when a district wants to save money, it loses important things,” Talbert explained. “We don’t want that. With this plan, we will become more efficient, which will allow us to offer more services, rather than cut programs and courses."

He emphasized that the money saved in the first year will not come from cutting people. Each year the district loses approximately 50-55 staff members through retirement or resignations. The intention is to not fill those positions, if possible.

Talbert said the research and fact-gathering through building meetings and surveys began last year and have continued through the 2020-21 school year.

The changes to building and grade level configurations are the following:



Superintendent Talbert and his staff of directors believe that these grade-level configurations will allow the district to have more resources available in each building, along with a better ability for teachers to communicate and collaborate effectively.

“We needed to align structures to support teaching and learning. This sets the table to allow us to move the needle,” he said in terms of test scores and college & career readiness.

He emphasized that the district has lost 33 percent of its student population since 2002. The most heavily populated neighborhoods have also changed. The district, he said, looked at the size and condition of the buildings to determine the plan. 

Fewer grade bands in a building allow us to have more resources in the building, he said, adding, that a major goal of the new boundaries is to keep transient students in the same buildings.

New start and end times for the buildings will be announced at a later date.

Among the major initiatives in the plan is the creation of a Trauma and Resiliency day program at Fairmount, expanding the Early College program at the Lehman facility, and a dedicated preschool building at Schreiber.

The district also plans an upgrade to the systems that allow better communication with parents, allowing a more customer-friendly experience.

The district will hold virtual Zoom meetings in February to answer questions and gather input from the community from 5:30-7 p.m. on the following dates:

Feb. 9: Cedar, Dueber, McGregor, Patrick, AIM Academy

Feb. 11: STEAMM Academy, Crenshaw, Lehman, ECHS, McKinley, Compton

Feb. 16: Mason, Harter, Clarendon, Worley, Schreiber

Feb. 18: Stone, Gibbs, Youtz, Belden, Arts Academy

Check back to the website and our social media sites for Zoom sign-in information and details. The video presentation from the board meeting will be available on CCSTV11 on Thursday. Click HERE to see the slide presentation.