Update on South Bend Schools two weeks into 2017 school year

NOW: Update on South Bend Schools two weeks into 2017 school year


SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Two weeks in to the 2017 school year, we are checking in with the South Bend School Corporation for an update on how things are going.

Dr. Kenneth Spells is in his second year as superintendent and says he is looking forward to continuing to build the corporation.

He says the district is continuing to work through troubles with transportation and have scene improvement.

“Much better than last year. Last year we started off with 18 uncovered routes the first day, this year we had all the routes covered. We still need more subs for our routes, but we are still recruiting it’s an ongoing thing,” says Dr. Spells.

About the nationwide teacher shortage, Dr. Spells says while South Bend is still hiring too, students haven’t been affected.

“We’re dealing with that shortage but we are still looking to have a great teacher in front of those students every day,” says Dr. Spells.

Dr. Spells says the new magnet program at Jackson picked up a lot more traction than they anticipated, with 100 applications.

His team also made big progress when they hired a new director of African American Parent and Student Services, Nathan Boyd. That hire came after many in the community complained about the progress the previous director had made in the position.

“The community spoke and we listened to their needs and what they asked of us. Now we are putting that into writing and we are putting this plan in place to support students,” says Dr. Spells.

Dr. Spells says he wants parents to know he supports them.

“We are building a great corporation on kid at a time, one family at a time. And as we are doing that I want them to know they have my undivided attention when we are talking and if they have issues they want to discuss they have the opportunity to do that,” says Dr. Spells.

After last year’s successful Listening Tour, this year Dr. Spells will hold a “Let’s Talk” Tour. Parents, students, and community members are invited to attend any one of the events to ask questions and share ideas. Staff from various SBCSC schools and programs will be available and one-on-ones with Dr. Spells are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

“Let’s Talk” Tour:

  • Thursday, September 7 @ Washington High School, 5:30 – 7:00 p.m.
  • Thursday, September 21 @ Jefferson Intermediate, 5:30-7:00 p.m.
  • Thursday, September 28 @ Darden Primary, 3:30-5:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday October 4 @ Administration Building, 10 – 11:30 a.m.
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