Schools educate tomorrow’s leaders and innovators

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By Michelle Leidy-Franklin, TSnews

HAYSVILLE – The preferred job skills listed by major employers for 2022 may not look the way many educators expect, and USD 261 in Haysville has been working to make sure its students are prepared for employment with changing expectations.
The superintendent of USD 261, Jeff Hersch, gave a presentation to the Haysville Chamber of Commerce on providing the best education to students to help them be prepared for the future. Employers are looking for cognitive abilities, complex problem solving skills and the ability to operate within an inclusive work environment.
“The preferred skills in 2022 are not on the state assessment tests,” said Hersch. “While we have to be able to help students pass the state assessments, because that’s the rules, we also have to prepare them for the future job market.”
Hersch showed the 1962 introduction for The Jetson’s cartoon and pointed out technology that was in the cartoon that is now a reality.
“The Jetson’s predicted the future, and The Jetson’s got it right,” said Hersch.
Products like flat screen TVs, flying cars, cell phones, and electronics that people can interact with and give voice commands to are all products that may not have been available in 1962, but are available today or will be in the near future.
“Technology has changed quickly,” said Hersch. “Some of the companies we have as part of our daily lives were not in existence even in 2008. Imagine what the world will look like when this year’s preschoolers graduate in 2036.”
Hersch said he aims to help empower teachers to be creative and innovative. He wants teachers to have the freedom to teach those skills that students will benefit most from in the future.
“When teachers come to me with new ideas that will benefit students, I’m giving them the green light,” said Hersch. “Do it.”
While the state of Kansas is experiencing a teacher shortage like other parts of the nation, Haysville has the third highest paid teachers in the Wichita suburban area in an effort to retain qualified teachers. This year the district successfully hired 62 new teachers.
In other business:
· Haysville Chamber of Commerce Director Tim Massey will be retiring in February 2023. The chamber is seeking a new director.
· It was announced that the homecoming parade would be on Sept. 30.