Thu, Nov. 21

MUHS board agenda: Curriculum audit

Mingus Union High School district buses. VVN file/Vyto Starinskas

Mingus Union High School district buses. VVN file/Vyto Starinskas

COTTONWOOD — A school district’s curriculum is more than textbooks and handouts.

According to Mingus Union Superintendent Mike Westcott, curriculum also means the approach to education, as well as assessing student progress.

Tuesday, the Mingus Union School Board will learn more about a curriculum audit performed in August by Curriculum Management Solutions.

The board will meet at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 12 at the school’s library, located at 1801 E. Fir St. in Cottonwood.

According to Westcott, the auditors “looked beyond curriculum.”

“System-wide, district-wide, anything related to instruction, they looked at,” Westcott said. “Board support, administrative support and training. Standards are the ‘what,’ curriculum is the ‘how.’”

For their audit, Curriculum Management Solutions obtained the district’s mission and vision statements, board policies, history of the district, salary schedules, teacher evaluations, district improvement plans, instructional materials adoption procedures, course descriptions, demographic data and student test data.

Westcott said that Mingus should “receive their final report any day now.” But the audit “included our submission of a large number of district documents and a three-day visit and observation of instruction by the audit team.”

“We’ll get a bunch of recommendations, how we can better adapt, monitor, shift these resources in a way we can get better student achievements,” Westcott said.

Beyond Textbooks

Beyond Textbooks is a collaborative community created by teachers and district leaders in the Vail (Ariz.) Unified School District. Mingus Union is now one of 113 partners whose goal is to improve student achievement.

But Beyond Textbooks is not an initiative to eliminate textbooks, Westcott said.

“It about how to take traditional methods and adapt them to modern standards,” Westcott said.

Tuesday, Mingus Union will tell its school board about the Beyond Textbooks initiative and what the district is getting out of the partnership. Administration and staff has had two Beyond Textbooks training sessions, Westcott said. Since Mingus Union is in training this year to learn the new program, Westcott said that the district will be fully trained and able to use the information in the fall 2020 semester.

For more information on Beyond Textbooks, visit

The district is required to post the board’s Nov. 12 agenda no less than 24 hours before the meeting. The district can add, change or remove items from its draft agenda prior to the official agenda’s release, no later than 24 hours prior to the meeting.

For the most up-to-date agenda, visit Call 928-634-0580 for more information.

Follow Bill Helm on Twitter @BillHelm42

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