By Lonnie Hetterle – Denver, Colorado … The 2020 RMC teacher’s convention, in August 3 – 4, will be held online.

This decision comes as Denver metro still has restrictions on large gatherings and the Conference made a commitment to limit expenses for the remainder of 2020.

The camaraderie and fellowship are always a blessing, and for that reason it was decided to move forward with the gathering online. The meetings are also a time to renew friendships, introduce new team members, as well as provide professional development. This will give the opportunity for the educators to come together even though separated by hundreds of miles.

The convention will cover the following topics: COVID-19 preparations for the classroom, training on a new testing system, and building relationships among teachers in RMC.

Part of the professional development will be training on the new MAP (Measure of Academic Progress) testing system.  Instead of once a year analysis with the I.T.B.S. (Iowa Test of Basic Skills) the student will be tested three times during the year.  This MAP testing is a shorter test but more thorough, and will be a computer-based test. It will give quicker results to teachers so they can modify plans to better meet the individual needs of the student. “MAP testing is well researched and will come with a wealth of useful information that will greatly enhance the learning for our students,” Hetterle commented.

Concerning COVID-19 and the uptick in cases in Colorado, RMC schools are planning to open in person next month. While tentative plans are ready, the education department is finding that the guidelines are needing to be modified on a regular basis.

RMC covers a large geographical area and some local modifications may be needed as local health regulations vary from county to county.  The department is currently in the process of obtaining supplies such as hand sanitizer, washable masks, and non-contact thermometers for all of our schools.

“The world we find ourselves in today is different as we continue to learn to live with the pandemic. I invite you to pray every day for our children, young people, and their teachers as we strive to be good citizens of this country and most importantly, a leader of young lives at the foot of the cross. Thank you for your faithful and continued support for our RMC Schools,” Hetterle finished.

–Lonnie Hetterle is RMC education superintendent; photo by Rajmund Dabrowski