Food cart, bus communication upgrades and curriculum changes highlight additions to General McLane

Category:  News
Friday, September 13th, 2019 at 11:50 AM
Food cart, bus communication upgrades and curriculum changes highlight additions to General McLane by General McLane School District
The protein to-go cart. | Contributed Photo

General McLane School District has officially kicked off the 2019-2020 school year. This year, the district welcomed 143 new students and 141 members of the class of 2032.

As children are back in the classrooms, students and parents alike will notice some new things around the district.

Buses equipped with First Responder Network Authority

General McLane School District is the first district in Northwestern Pennsylvania to get a major boost in its buses’ wireless communications with an upgrade to First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet). This independent authority within the U.S. Department of Commerce will provide immediate and reliable communication from buses to the District Transportation Director and Head Mechanic. They’ll also be immediately connected to school resource officer Jose Montes and the Erie County Sheriff’s Office for emergency situations.

Drone technology enters schools

General McLane High School students will now have exposure to the use of drone technology for career pathways in computer science. Thanks to the PAsmart Targeted Grant, General McLane High School purchased 30 drones, which will be used in the “Coding II” course this school year, as well as new drone courses that will be available to high school students in the 2020-2021 school year. The second component of this new curriculum includes partnerships with both Edinboro University and North Coast Flight School. High school students will be able to take Edinboro University’s “An Introduction to Unmanned Vehicles” through a dual-enrollment program.

Certificate in Quality Assurance Dual Enrollment Program

Thanks to a partnership with Edinboro University and a grant the university received from the PA Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED), public high school students can earn a Certificate in Quality Assurance and 15 college credits (free of charge) once they complete the required online courses and an internship during their junior and senior years of high school. Six General McLane students are currently enrolled in the first pilot of the program this fall.

Protein To-Go Cart

General McLane High School has a new “protein to-go” cart stationed in the gym lobby every morning, thanks to a grant. As students come in from the bus, they can use their four-digit code to get hard-boiled eggs, yogurt and fruit parfaits, meat and cheese breakfast sandwiches, quality protein bars, and fruit. The district was awarded $4,660 through part of Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf’s school breakfast initiative and it’s meant to provide students with alternative breakfast methods to fuel better academic performance.

More Developments

There will be new curriculum for technology education, high school math and eighth grade language arts. “Healthy Living” is also a new elective being taught at James W. Parker Middle School.

In a week or so, the district will be rolling out “Not Here,” a district-wide program to encourage students to make their school a place free from bias and unkind acts to others.

Outside of welcoming nine teachers, the District also welcomed a handful of new instructional staff, including:
— Laura Brown, administrative assistant, James W. Parker Middle School.
— Mitch Skladanowski, maintenance.
— Heather Bochert, administrative specialist in human resources and business office.
— Amy Skladanowski, food services manager.
— Kristina Sonney, receptionist, James W. Parker Middle School.
— Taylor Paulus, food services.

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