Curriculum, Instruction, & Special Programs

Mr. Michael C. Hearn
Director of Curriculum, Instruction, & Special Programs
(330) 767-3577

Mrs. Kari Wentling
Curriculum & Special Education Secretary
(330) 767-3913

2018/19 Curriculum Update

Much work has been done this past school year to help better prepare our teachers to serve students, and ensure that they are college, career, and/or life ready upon graduation. We have completed year one of three of our revised three-year continuous improvement plan with two main goals:

  1. By May 2021 100% of students will demonstrate a minimum of one year's growth in all subject areas and read at grade level or above as measured by district-approved or state assessments.

  2. By May 2021 Fairless Local Schools will cultivate a safe, supportive, and inclusive school climate as measured by district collected non-academic indicators that show 100% of staff, students, and community partners are ALL IN for ALL students.

To meet these important goals, Fairless will continue to partner with the Stark County Educational Service Center, State Support Team 9, and the Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence for training, consultation, and professional development in inclusiveness, high achievement, best-practices, and engaging lesson and assessment design. We have audited our curriculum resources k-12 and have begun the process of replacing old, unaligned materials with new. Since 2016, we have replaced: Math k-12, English Language Arts k-12, and Science 6-8. We implemented MAP Growth K-12 and revised our teacher evaluation system to make student growth in reading using normed data a high priority. Our professional development focus continues to be on how to close the literacy achievement gap. Pre-K-5 we have implemented the Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling (LETRS). Additionally, we have received a grant from the Ohio Department of Education in the amount of $270,000 to implement LETRS at Fairless Middle School. This substantial investment in literacy instruction will ensure that Fairless students have access to a teaching staff that is prepared to help close the literacy achievement gap. Bottom line, we are focusing on the basics of great teaching and learning for ALL children with the end goal to ensure that every Fairless Falcon graduates life ready.

This year, we partnered with the Stark County Educational Service Center to bring in extra support for our College Credit Plus program and students. This partnership, brings former Stark State College Advisor Dennis Trenger to our campus for 50 days a year to work with students, help grow our program, stretch and protect taxpayer resources, and ensure our students have access to a world class curriculum. Fairless Local has invested further by providing secretarial support by allocating one day per week of Curriculum and Special Education Secretary Kari Wentling to this program. Her work is streamlining processes and helping to ensure that our students and families are able to navigate the CCP process. Through this partnership, we have expanded our CCP program to include more face-to-face courses and also a portfolio of digital offerings from Stark State. We now have 70 credit hours of CCP in-house at Fairless High School. We are launching a series of Advanced Placement classes through our Acellus Online Learning platform and face-to-face AP Spanish. Students will use our Honors Diploma Pathways to build customized schedules that blend digital, face-to-face, AP, and CCP courses. We are also in the process of creating a pathway that will offer an Associate’s Degree from Fairless High School. Expect more information to be available on this when your students schedule for coursework in 2020. This is an exciting time to be a Falcon and there has never been more opportunities for students to advance their learning options.

State assessments and accountability measures continue to fluctuate and there is not an indication of long-term stability. The Ohio School Report Card system is set to go through a major revision that will remove the letter grade system. We are committed to student growth regardless of the system Ohio enacts and will continue to implement our continuous improvement goals.

Federal Programs

The Fairless Local School District participates in several federal programs. Parents and community members are encouraged to provide their input regarding these programs. Each program is listed below with a brief description.

  • Title One - used across the district to assist students who have difficulties in reading and math, reduce class, size, and fund the summer reading program.

  • Title Two - Professional development and Teacher Quality

  • Title 6B - Used to partially fund Special Education Programs

Questions about Curriculum, Instruction, or Special Programs?

Contact Mike Hearn at (330) 767-3577 ext. 1002 or email at