Chris Long, program host, invited fellow Rotarian and Superintendent of Milton-Union Schools, Ginny Rammel, and Mick Nealeigh, the school technology coordinator, and Diane Kroplin, community member, as the guest speakers at the November 17 West Milton Rotary Club meeting. Ginny began the program by sharing some recent happenings in the school district. The Milton-Union Elementary was named a “School of Promise,” one of 98 schools in the state to earn this title. To qualify it required to achieve at least 80% proficiency on state tests, at least 40% of students must be classified as “economically disadvantaged” and must also score “C” or better on student progress and a “B” or better on Annual Measurable Objectives. She shared updates on new opportunities existing for the high school with dual enrollment, there are eight classes in which students receive both high school and college credit. They also are partnering with Miami Valley Career Technology Center to provide on-site coursework in Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, Foundation of Business & Management and Organizational Behavior. Milton-Union was one of nine districts in the nation honored this summer by the U.S. Dept. of Education as a Green Ribbon School. The requirements included net zero environmental impact, positive impact on student ad staff health and graduates are environmentally and sustainability literate. Milton-Union earned the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star award. The district earned 92 of a possible 100 points on a third party audit for its energy efficiency. That score placed it in the top 10% of all schools in the nation for its commitment for energy conservation. The school also received the Safe Routes to School grant which provided the infrastructure portion of the $400,000 project that is nearing completion. Lights have been installed along the pedestrian pathway from Hasket Road to the school building. A bridge over the Hasket Springs was constructed so as not to disturb the natural flow of water and the sidewalks are completed along the south side of Hamilton Street and the west side of Hasket Road. Dr. Rammel then highlighted recent accomplishments in fine arts and athletics of the high school. Mick and Diane shared information on the progress of the “Straight A Grant” that was awarded to a consortium of schools led by Milton-Union with Piqua City and Franklin Monroe with Ohio State University’s Crane Center for Early Childhood Research and Policy, Wright State University’s Center for Evaluation Research and Public Media Connect/Think TV. The $2.1 million project for the REACH Consortium centers around the goal of increasing student achievement through increased parent engagement, providing individual student laptops and providing highly engaging multi-media reading modules called “bytes.” Ultimately, this will change the focus from intervention to enrichment! Mick demonstrated the type of laptops that will be given to all Kindergarten and first grade students once both the student and parent complete training. The project should be ready by June of 2015.