Back to School: More resources, new technology for Silver Valley School District

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Courtesy of the Silver Valley Unified School District

FORT IRWIN, Calif. — More than 2,100 students returned to classroom halls on Aug. 13, welcomed by 250 teachers, faculty, administrators and staff of the Silver Valley Unified School District.

“The first day of school was awesome,” said school superintendent, Jesse Najera.

He said District Office personnel were at all seven sites on the first day, welcoming parents and students and helping in any way they could.

There are several, new items parents and students can also look forward to this year, including a new, Facebook page under “Silver Valley Unified School District.” Updates posted to the page include the Fort Irwin Middle School Cross Country schedule, picture day schedule for all schools, drop-off and pick-up procedures, high school football games, volleyball schedules and student and staff awards, among others events.

There is also new Instagram page for the district under “Silver Valley USD.” The school district will continue its Twitter page, where they provide daily updates on each school and it’s located @SilverValleyUSD on Twitter.

“We have a district-wide focus this year on meeting the Social-Emotional needs of our students,” Najero said. “We are doing this through Social-Emotional curriculum (2nd Step) at every site, professional development and the added counselor positions. Every school has built in a time in their daily master schedule to go through the Second Step lessons with their students,” he said.

Here are some of the other new items you can look forward to this school year with SVUSD:

• Full-time counselors at Fort Irwin Middle School, Silver Valley High School, the Alternative Education Center and the Yermo School

• Full-time RTI teachers at Lewis Elementary School, Tiefort View Intermediate and the Yermo School

• Assistant Principal added at Silver Valley High School and Lewis Elementary

• TK-3rd grade has a 24:1 class size average this year

• Began a large-scale energy efficiency construction project district wide this summer

• Upgraded every indoor and outdoor light bulb to LED (over 7,000 bulbs) district wide

Najera elaborated on the upgraded lighting.

“This will enhance the learning environment in the classrooms, make our campus’ well-lit and safer at night and cut the district energy consumption in half,” he said. “We also replaced all HVAC units at Lewis Elementary (over 40 units) and upgraded HVAC at Silver Valley High School.”

Najera said they are also grateful to the Department of Defense for two, major grants.

One was the DoDEA STEM Grant of $1.25 million, which brought the district many resources, including a new Science Curriculum, upgraded classroom technology, and professional development for the sciences. The other grant is the National Math Science Initiative at Silver Valley High School.  This grant will provide the professional development and support to develop the advanced placement (AP) curriculum.

And there is one, more honor the school system is proud to display.

“We were honored last year to have FIMS (Fort Irwin Middle Schol) named a 2019 CA Distinguished School,” Najera said. “FIMS was one of only 2 schools in the entire High Desert area to receive this prestigious honor.  One of the ways we can communicate this great achievement to our community was through a mural.  The mural was completed last week and looks outstanding.  Congratulations to FIMS for this incredible achievement!”

The main website for the school system is svusdk12.net and includes the district calendar, contact information, bus routes, newsletters and more.