Constitution Day and Partnership to Alleviate Child Hunger Are Among Items Approved by School Board

A partnership with the Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County, Constitution Day, and the first reading of the district’s homework policy were a few of the many agenda items discussed at the August 19 Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District school board meeting.

Schools will celebrate Constitution Day on September 17. The Board adopted a resolution to honor the signing of the United States Constitution in 1787. Schools will celebrate with a variety of activities that instill pride in America.

The school board also approved a Memorandum of Understanding with Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County that will enable Topaz Elementary School to be part of a grant that is aimed at alleviating child hunger in America. After a competitive application process with over 50 applicants, the Second Harvest Food Bank selected Topaz Elementary to be one of 10 in Orange County to participate in this program. Families will be able to shop “Farmers Market” style to select various fresh produce that will be provided by Second Harvest Food Bank. The market will be held nine times after school during the school year. Many of the families that will participate are enrolled in the school district’s McKinney Vento program, a program for families that are homeless or experiencing transitional living situations due to the economy.

Also on the agenda was a first reading of the district’s homework policy. This past year, the district convened a committee comprised of parents, teachers, principals and district staff to review research studies on homework and the existing district policy which was last reviewed in 1986. To capture wider stakeholder input, this past spring the district also surveyed students, parents, and teachers. In July, all of the committee work and survey findings were reviewed by the Board of Education during an in-depth study session where they, too, provided input. The next step was for staff to draft a policy that reflects the input of all groups and present it to the Board of Education for first review. The policy will return to the Board for a second reading and approval consideration.

“What we consistently heard from all groups is that homework should be meaningful and emphasize quality rather than quantity,” said Assistant Superintendent of Education Candy Plahy. “That is truly what is best for students and what the policy as a whole highlights.”

The Board also approved many other educational, business and personnel-related items.
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