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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

District Three To Spend $1 Million on Football Stadium Renovations

Following a comprehensive discussion on how to use the $3.7 million in excess funds from the 2006-07 operating budget, the board voted to purchase security camera systems for secondary schools and for school buses up to $750,000 (7-0 vote); provide professional development funds for personnel in all schools in the amount of $350,000 (5-2 vote with Reid & Vining against); purchase artificial turf for the District Three Stadium in the estimated amount of $700,000 (5-2 vote with Silverman & Vining against); purchase a jumbo, customized scoreboard for use in the District Three Stadium at an estimated cost of $300,000 (5-2 vote with Silverman & Vining against); and put the remaining excess in the district’s fund balance.

In other business, the school board . . .
ulistened to the following citizens express their opinions about using a portion or portions of the approximate $3.7 million excess in revenues for the 2006-07 school year or put the money in the district’s fund balance:

     Jeff Nicholson—anti appropriation for additional staff development funds and pro use of money for additional Promethean boards for teachers

     Dennis Partlow—pro economic impact that could result from community or area use of the District Three stadium with the addition of field turf and technological scoreboard

     Bill Warren—pro improvements at District Three Stadium through addition of field turf and scoreboard
     Caroline Allen (South Pointe student)—pro use of money for educational programs (labs at South Pointe not adequately supplied)

     Billy Parker—pro improvement at District Three Stadium through addition of field turf
     Johnny Walker—pro real grass due to cost and better use of taxpayer money
     Wayne Tomberlin—pro real glass due to cost and better use of taxpayer money
uapproved personnel recommendations, minutes from the Aug. 27 and Sept. 10 meetings of the board, and approved overnight field trips requested by Ebenezer Avenue, Northwestern, Castle Heights, and Rawlinson Road;

uheard Supt. Moody make the following announcements:           
        4A public forum on the proposed elementary, middle school, and high school reassignment plans will be held at 6:00 p.m. Monday, Oct. 1, in the Sullivan Auditorium. This is a change in time from previous notifications.

        4Following the NHS vs. RHH alumni flag football game on Sept. 22, two of three events in the Sports Extravaganza 2007 still remain. The Ride 2 Read Motorcycle Benefit Rally will be held on Saturday, Sept. 29, at Northwestern High School, and a benefit golf tournament will be held on Saturday, Oct. 6, at the Waterford Golf Club. Proceeds from all three sports events will help fund the Power of Mentoring Program.  For information on the motorcycle rally or the golf tournament, interested persons can call 981-1006 or check out the "Power of Mentoring" information on the district's website,

        4The district has planned two important meetings in early October. Chairpersons of School Improvement Councils will meet from 6:00-8:00 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 4, in the District Office Training Room to receive an update on state SIC initiatives.

        4On Oct. 5, from 11:30-1:00, a meeting will be held with local pastors to discuss potential sites within the community, and possibly within churches, where school board members can talk with parents and others without school-age children about public education in District Three.

        4Northwestern High School will host the board’s next work session on Monday, Oct. 8. The meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the school's media center.

          4The second of six late start dates will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 10. Our first late start day on Sept. 12 went well. We had a number of students who reported to school at the regular time, but principals had made provisions for them. One segment of our current "School Talk" show is on late start days and what teachers plan to accomplish on these dates.

        4Students will have two holidays in October: Monday, Oct. 15, a Consortium staff development day, and Friday, Oct. 26, a teacher day in District Three.

ulistened to Assoc. Supt. Luanne Kokolis and Susan York highlight the reassignment process for populating Mount Holly Elementary and Dutchman Creek Middle School and reducing student capacity at Old Pointe Elementary and at Rock Hill High during the 2008-09 school year;

uheard Dr. Kokolis state  the 15-day enrollment reflects an increase of 374 students over our 135-day enrollment taken last spring. She stated that this increase aligns with the land use study that was introduced to the board last spring and which cited that the district will be growing by an estimated 400 students for the next few years.

uheard an overview by Harriet Jaworowski on plans for staff development days on Oct. 15 and Oct. 26; 

uwatched a PowerPoint presentation while Sheila Huckabee and Keith Wilks reported on their visit in early September to Opportunities for Learning, a charter school in California, and its possibilities for expelled students (grades 7-12) in District Three. Representatives from Opportunities for Learning will visit with York County superintendents and other administrators and state department officials on October 3 in District Three to discuss program requirements. This is a very successful program in California, but would require some major concessions from the Department of Education and State Legtislature before it can become a reality here.  This is one of programs the district is investigating after the Board directed them to start taking action to improve our drop out rates.

ulistened to Walter Wolff talk about the district’s new program, Phoenix Bound, for middle schoolers ages 14-17 who have failed one or more grades. Students can initially earn one unit in Earth Science in Phoenix Bound; and then as they move to the  Crossroads Program, they can earn three high school credits in English, math, and global studies. Dr. Wolff stated that the program has met with initial success, and that he is hopeful that students will continue in school and be able to catch up with their age-appropriate class. This is a program the district has implemented after the Board directed them to begin immediate steps to start addressing drop out rates and graduation rates.

uheard Dr. Kokolis provide an update on the audit for the District's Effectiveness Needs Study. She stated that Drs. Don Thomas and Dale Holden are compiling data for an annual audit of the standards set forth in the study from last year, and that when the audit has been completed, the comparative report and study analysis will be presented to the board. The report completed last November showed District Three to be under performing in comparison to Districts with similar demographics in South Carolina.

ulistened to Chairman Bob Norwood review topics discussed at the board’s work session on Sept. 10;

uapproved for first reading board policy IKE/IKE-R (Promotion/Retention) and second reading of GBEB (Staff Conduct) and GCQF (Discipline, Suspension and Dismissal of Professional Staff) (Vote was 7-0);

udetermined that Trustees Norwood, Douglas, Brown, and Reid will serve as voting delegates at the annual business meeting of the S.C. School Boards Assn. on Dec. 1;

uagreed that they would contact members of the local legislative delegation to encourage them to schedule visits in our schools until Oct. 19 as part of a national initiative titled “Legislators Back to School.”

uThe administration removed a request for an overnight trip after several Board members objected to no scholarships being offered for students per Board Policy.

Zipporah Little was approved as the Co-ordinator for school-based mentoring and Anthony Thomas was approved as an Assistant Principal for Rock Hill High School.  Vote was 7-0.

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