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Copper Country ISD growth

Over the last seven years, the Copper Country ISD has grown by leaps and bounds, providing more and more services to our schools and students and providing more jobs for our community. Seven years ago, the CCISD employed 87 people. Today, that number has grown 151 employees. So where is the growth?

Many people now know about the Career & Technical Education (CTE) programs. After the CTE millage was passed, the CCISD added many new programs throughout the three county region. Student enrollment has nearly tripled and thus the CCISD added 15 new instructors and aides to run these programs.

Our REMC department, which handles internet, filtering, computers, security cameras and alarms, has also grown dramatically, by 13 employees. REMC’s SupportNet has grown from supporting 17 agencies to the current 35 agencies and from 4,500 to 13,000 computers.

The Copper Country ISD’s General Education Department has also seen much growth. During the last seven years, 13 employees have been added to this department. The biggest growth has been with mental health services. The CCISD now has multiple mental health providers who work in the local schools to service students with mental health needs, either through short term treatment plans or by connecting students to community providers for long term treatment.

The Copper Country ISD was selected as one of three ISDs in Michigan to participate in a Michigan Department of Education grant entitled Project AWARE. The CCISD will receive approximately $2 million over the next 5 years for the purpose of developing a comprehensive program for youth mental health services. The goals of the grant include:

• Increasing awareness of mental health issues among school-aged youth (ages 5-18).

• Providing training for school personnel and other adults who interact with school-aged youth, including community partners, to detect and respond to mental health issues.

• Increase access and connection to school and community-based mental, emotional, and health services for school-aged youth who may have behavioral health issues including serious emotional disturbance or serious mental illness, and their families to needed services.

The CCISD hired a manager for the project as well as two mental health specialists to help obtain services for students and families.

The General Education Department has also added two Literacy Coaches who work with all our local schools, who themselves have designated Literacy Leaders to implement the best research-supported instructional practices.

Around 10 years ago, the CCISD began providing business services to our local schools. These services have continued to grow. Currently, the CCISD provides business services to five of our local school districts, along with handling all of the CCISD funds, including many state and federal grants.

By far, the biggest department within the Copper Country ISD is our Special Education Department. Over the last seven years, the CCISD has added 27 employees in this area. The CCISD runs 11 classrooms in 6 different buildings throughout the Copper Country. These classrooms are staffed with specialized teachers and paraprofessionals. Along with our own classrooms, the CCISD provides services to all of our locals in the areas of Speech Therapy, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, School Psychologist services, Teacher Consultant services for the Visually Impaired and the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Early Childhood Special Education services, Social Work services and Autism services. The CCISD is responsible to work with any child from birth all the way to the age of 26 who is in need of a special education service. The CCISD have staff who visit preschool programs and go into the individual homes of our youngest students. Our ISD also has a special classroom out in the public for our adult population.

As you can see, the Copper Country has grown tremendously over the last seven years. We have enhanced what we do by applying for grants, adding staff and providing new services for our local schools and community as a whole when called upon to help fill a need.

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