Quick Links

Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Main Navigation

Top

  • Virtual Classroom Access

    Google Classroom and MORE!

                                         

    Students can now begin logging into Google Classroom using their @usd283.org email address.

     

    If your student does not know what their email address is or password for logging into Google please email tech@usd283.org to request this information OR you may send a direct message to this account. Only approved contacts, through verification, will receive the student's log in information if needed.

     

    If your student does not have a device or internet access essential staff will be addressing these issues shortly utilizing information from the closure survey. Packets may be available for pick-up/delivery starting next week when classes are expected to resume virtually. Look for emails and more information regarding these things very soon.

     

    Sign in for the first time

    1. Go to classroom.google.com and click Go to Classroom.

    2. Enter your username and click Next.

    3. Enter your password and click Next.

    4. If there is a welcome message, read it and click Accept.

    5. Click Get Started.

    read more
  • Free Wi-Fi Hotspots for Students

    SKT

    To support local students while school buildings are closed, we are sponsoring free Wi-Fi hotspot drive-up locations in our service area.

    As your hometown telecommunications provider, we want to assure you that we are looking into ways that we can further support the communities and families in our service area during this difficult time. Since the news broke that the schools we serve will be closed for the remainder of the semester, we have been working on ways to help students have access to an Internet connection, regardless of financial status.

     

    We have been in communication with the nine school districts in our service area, and one way we are helping is by coordinating efforts to set up free Wi-Fi hotspot locations for students to use for their schoolwork. We ask that the community reserve these connections for this purpose so the students have the bandwidth they need to continue their education. You can find a list of free Wi-Fi hotspot locations for students on our website.

    https://www.sktc.net/2020/03/free-wi-fi-hotspot-drive-up-locations-for-students-now-live/ 

    Parents, we encourage you to practice social distancing while you are using these connections. Stay in your car or, as the weather improves, keep at least 6 feet between you and other families if you choose to sit outside.

     

    During this unprecedented situation, we will continue to keep you and our employees at the center of our planning and decision-making.

     

    Take care,

     

    The SKT Leadership Team

    Contact Us

    Technical Support Available 24/7

    Call: 888.758.8976 |  Chat: M-F 8a-5p |  Click: SKTC.net

    Come by: 112 S. Lee, Clearwater (temporarily closed to public)

    https://www.sktc.net/2020/03/free-wi-fi-hotspot-drive-up-locations-for-students-now-live/

    read more
  • USD 283 School Closure Parent/Guardian Survey

    USD 283 School Closure Parent/Guardian Survey

    Link: School Closure Survey - USD 283

    We need your help! 

    This confidential survey is for essential staff to utilize through thoughtful planning during school closures due to COVID-19.

    USD 283 essential staff are planning for continuous learning for all students following guidelines set forth by The Kansas Department of Education. We want to ensure that we are equipped to transition to a continuous learning environment, and are responsive to the needs of all of the families and community.

    This survey also includes an opportunity to update your student(s) emergency contacts via phone and email! If you have not been receiving emails or phone calls with critical updates then you need to include that information in your response!

    We need as many responses before Monday as we can get so please share with all the parents/guardians of students you know!

    Thank You for all of your help and support
    -USD 283 Staff

    read more
  • Executive Order NO. 20-07

    Governor Laura Kelly

    Executive Order No. 20-07

    Governor Laura Kelly

     

    Temporarily closing K-12 schools to slow the spread of COVID-19

    Exec. Order 20-07.pdf

    read more
  • Free Meals!

    Covid-19 Update

    Covid-19 Meals Update!

    Elk Valley USD 283 is committed to providing access to healthy meals for our surrounding communities during the school building closure.

    Available to all children & teens ages 1-18. There are no income requirements or registration for pick up locations. If you are on a USD 283 *Bus Route and would like to have meals delivered to your door please contact the school for arrangements. If you have any questions please contact the school or Belinda Corle (620) 642-2215 ext. 205 (leave a message and we will return your call) or email bcorle@usd283.org.

    Starting Monday, March 23 - Thursday, May 28, 2020, we will offer grab n' go meals for the week. Pick-ups available Mondays (3 meals) and Thursday (2 meals)

    Pick-up Locations:

    Elk Valley School (grab 'n go in front of Bell Tower) 10 am-11 am

    Elk Falls Senior Center (grab 'n go on Main Street of Elk Falls) 10 am-10:30 am

    *Bus Route (Door to Door Delivery) will start the route at 10am​​​​​​​

    You are encouraged to pre-order your meals to assure availability at your pick-up site.

    free meals 2020.pdf

    Consent for Disclosure.pdf

    Free Meals​​​​​​​

    Consent for Disclosure

    read more
  • Statewide School Closures

    Covid-19 Update

    The USD 283 Board of Education met Tuesday, March 17 at 6 PM to address the immediate closure of all school buildings in Kansas. Over the next few days, school leaders will be working hard on plans to deliver instruction with guidance from the state. Further, locations will be announced where meals will be delivered for children ages 1-18 within the Elk Valley district. Our efforts are in conjunction with our county sister school, USD 282 West Elk so we can leverage all the resources of the two districts to best address student and the county resident needs during this difficult time for families. Please check our website and official Facebook page regularly for up to date information.

     

    School Closures

    read more
  • IMPORTANT UPDATES

    Covid-19

    USD 283 will continue to be on Spring Break the week of March 16th.

    All buildings and activities are closed until further notice.

    Details for school after Spring Break will be determined later this week with guidance from the county and state health departments along with KSDE.

    read more
  • Important District Calendar Changes

                     Calendar Update 

     

        A School Calendar change was approved at the March board meeting.

     

        School WILL be in session Monday, April 20th and NO school on Friday, April 24th.

     

        Prom will now be on Saturday, April 25th starting with walk-ins at 5:30 PM. 

     

        If you have any questions, contact the school office at (620) 642-2215

    read more
  • Rural high school agriculture program inspires youth to pursue agriculture careers

     

             
        Members of The Ag Experience pose for a group photo during a hands-on teaching lesson. (Photo courtesy of Chris Johnston.)

    Rural high school agriculture program inspires youth to pursue agriculture careers

    Chris Johnston has been with Elk Valley School in Longton, Kansas, for about four years. The 1A school is small and when Johnston accepted the single teacher agricultural educator position, he was made aware the school’s agriculture program was in jeopardy.

    “When they hired me, they told me you’re either going to turn this FFA program around, or you’re going to close the doors,” Johnston said.

    A native of Fort Supply, Oklahoma, Johnston says his hometown has a lot in common with Longton. They are both perceived as just dots on a map and they face a lot of the same issues, such as being located in rural areas, socioeconomically depressed populations and most of the jobs in the area are agricultural. In fact, Johnston says 93% of the jobs in Elk County, Kansas, are involved in production agriculture. The problem with that is the young people often move away to larger cities in search of work, which causes the population to dwindle.

    “We need the kids to come back into the industry and we need the population boost,” Johnston said. “People flock out of small places like this to Wichita or Kansas City and seldom return to their roots.”

    Johnston says when he was in college at Oklahoma Panhandle State University in Goodwell, Oklahoma, he came up with an idea to immerse students back into agriculture and restore some of the laborers to the agriculture industry.

    “Right now, if people do find help, the kids can hardly use a pair of pliers,” Johnston explained. “I wondered to myself what we are doing wrong with our schooling and these programs we’re teaching.”

    Johnston says when he was hired, the school board already had a vision to ramp up their agricultural education program. When he shared his ideas, the school and community brainstormed and came up with a program they would later call The Ag Experience. The program was designed to combine hands-on learning experiences for students to develop a love and understanding of how they could be successful with agricultural careers and at the same time keep small schools viable in rural areas. However, before this project could gain enough steam, Johnston first had to save the Elk Valley FFA chapter.

               
        Chris Johnston (far right) and a few members of his chapter pose with an award. (Photo courtesy of Chris Johnston.)

    Cranking up the fire in the FFA program

    From the first day Johnston walked into his classroom, he decided to take the students who were already in the FFA chapter and get them super involved. Everyone picked a Supervised Agricultural Experience project and once he started taking them to contests and livestock shows they instantly took to it.

    “By the end of the first semester, when the kids re-enrolled for classes, my class roster doubled,” Johnson said. “Now I have all but three of the kids in high school enrolled in my classes and the only reason they are not in my class is because of scheduling conflicts.”

    Over time, the agriculture program kept building itself back with Johnson at the helm, but he says he lets the students drive the program with their interest levels and what they want to learn about. Once the FFA chapter was reestablished, the school started implementing ideas for The Ag Experience, and so far it has been a giant success. Students who might not have been involved with agriculture are gravitating toward it and Johnson is finding new and innovative ways to provide the best education to the students he teaches.

    Johnston has even recruited students for his programs by allowing parents of homeschooled students to bring their children to his agriculture classes. Parents enroll their children as half-time students and are still allowed to participate in FFA programs that build leadership skills, life skills and help them discover career opportunities.

    “It’s just one of those things that just grows every day,” he said. “The Ag Experience is a new program and it’s never been done before, so we’re tweaking it and changing it all the time.”

    Right now, 57 students rotate through his classroom daily, including middle schoolers who are not officially FFA members. His FFA chapter consists of 37 FFA members and his school farm is comprised of about 15 to 20 acres. Johnston houses SAE and livestock projects and chapter-owned livestock for teaching purposes on the school farm so students can learn by doing.

    “I want them to have a well-rounded education, not only in agriculture, but have some real world life experiences,” Johnston said. “This way if they do choose to go straight into the industry, they have those skills that our industry demands.” 

            ​​​​​​​

    Thinking out of the box

    For schools like Elk Valley, finding inventive methods of keeping the school alive for the benefit of families in rural areas and the good of small communities is a must. The school even purchased an old hotel to repurpose as a dormitory for students involved in the Ag Experience who are from out of town, district or even out of state.

    “It’s not a charter school, but it’s like a destination school,” Johnston explained. “Our primary focus will be the ag program. We co-op sports with another school, but we are in the process of bringing sports back to Longton, but it may be take some time.”

    Elk Valley is on a four-day school week, so students come onto campus on Monday night or early Tuesday morning, go through classes Tuesday through Friday and will stay in the hotel during the week. Currently the students involved in the program are semi-local, and at the most travel 45 miles to the school.

    As of Aug. 1 the housing system will be open and the Ag Experience will welcome its first wave of attendees to the dormitory facility. This year is cost-free, but next year the program plans to offer scholarships for students to attend. Johnson says he looks for individuals who will have the right attitude, mindset and students who will be positively impacted by the program.

    “We really want for kids come over and tour the facilities and talk with us before they apply,” Johnston said. “I don’t necessarily think a senior, on their way out the door is the best case scenario. We’re really looking for sophomore or freshman aged kids. I want these kids to get the full scope experience from beginning to end so as they flow through, they hit our articulation agreements we have with some junior colleges and can fall right into some post-secondary programs or go straight into the industry as soon as they complete our program.”

    Johnson truly takes the FFA Motto—Learning to Do, Doing to Learn, Earning to Live, Living to Serve—literally when educating and mentoring his students.

    “My main goal as an educator—no matter what I’m doing—is when kids leave my classroom or school farm, is I want them to have learned something, especially about citizenship, literacy and advocacy in the ag industry,” Johnson said. “We’re in a time right now where we really blur the lines between literacy and advocacy and I really try to make a point of that with my students. They need to be able to go out and advocate for agriculture and teach others what agriculture is and really hit that literacy side.”

    Additionally, Johnson says he believes FFA programs need to return to the bare bones of what agriculture is and teach the fundamentals.

    “I feel we get too far disconnected from what the nuts and bolts of agriculture really are and that we need to return to our roots a little bit and teach what it really takes for production to happen, whether it is what happens to that bushel of wheat when it comes out of the field or where that steer goes once he leaves the sale barn.”

    A line in the official FFA opening ceremonies sums up The Ag Experience best when the FFA president asks the FFA members, “Why are we here? To practice brotherhood, honor agricultural opportunities and responsibilities and develop those qualities of leadership which an FFA member should possess.”

    To learn more about The Ag Experience or apply, visit www.theagexperience.com.

    Lacey Newlin can be reached at 580-748-1892 or lnewlin@hpj.com.

    read more
PreviousNext

Calendar Highlights

View Entire Month

Back To Top