Educational directions continually evolve to reflect new knowledge, new understanding, and a changing world. Shared Decision Making provides the forum and acts as a catalyst for this evolution. In the Newark Central School District, Shared Decision Making is based on the following beliefs:
- All children in the Newark public school system can learn.
- The educational interests of children are best served when all segments of the community work together.
- Educational directions established by people closest to children have the greatest impact on learning.
- Decisions created by consensus are built on understanding and acceptance.
At Perkins School, the Shared Decision Making Committee strives to raise student achievement by increasing family involvement in school-based activities, by giving parents the tools they need to support and reinforce learning at home.PROJECTS developed by the committee include:A Writing Project with a goal to increase student writing by motivating students to write about an assigned theme, sharing their creativity with others and promoting a sense of accomplishment and pride in their work. Past themes of this at home writing task have included "If I were an animal …” and “What I like best about Perkins School is …” Students can write poems, stories, letters or journal entries, and can draw pictures to go with their writing. All students' writing pieces are compiled into a book which is sent home for everyone to enjoy.A Summer Activity Packet with a calendar of activities to complete for the months of July and August.
The calendars are designed children to encourage reading, writing, speaking and math. On each day there is an activity intended to encourage interaction and learning. Each child who returns a completed calendar in September receives recognition for his/her efforts.