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Monday, November 30, 2009

Other School Boards Have Issues Too

I read several blogs from school boards across the country. Sometimes it is good to see what issues they are discussing.

The Loudoun County School Board is working on budget priorities and cell phone usage. You can view one board members comments by clicking on the links above.

The Parkrose School Board has a vacancy and is advertising for a replacement until the next election. A board member has an interesting take on what the job of being on the school board means. You can read his comments here.

School BoardLoudoun County School Board

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Rock Hill School Board November Business Meeting Action Item Results

The Rock Hill School Board took the following action at it's regularly scheduled November business meeting on Monday, November 23, 2009:
  • Voted 7-0 to approve the following consent agenda items; minutes, personnel recommendations; 2 overnight field trip requests; an amended 2009-10 budget; and Jim Vining's January board compensation to the Northside Elementary School of the Arts.
  • Voted 7-0 to approve the use of the Flexible Learning Center's Gym by the Rock Hill Volleyball Club
  • Voted 6-1 (Brown against) to allow Impact Community Church to continue meeting at Rawlinson Road Middle school for another 6 months.
  • Voted 7-0 to approve the following policies; IKF; IJ; GBEB; GCF; GCQA/GCQB; GDF
  • Voted 7-0 to approve policy DFAC for first reading
  • Voted 7-0 to approve new high school courses for next year
  • Voted 7-0 to return 3 students to school

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Northwestern Cheerleaders Just Short of State Championship

The Northwestern High School Cheerleaders came within 2 points of taking away the 2009 - 10 SC 4A cheerleading championship, losing out to Summerville 278 to 276. Lexington came in third at 268. You can watch a two minute clip of the meet by clicking here.
At left, picture of trophies (From The State Newspaper)

At left, picture of NHS Cheerleaders on break (From The State Newspaper)

Below is a short clip of NHS Cheerleaders (from The State Newspaper)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Rock Hill School Board Business Meeting on Monday

The Rock Hill School Board will hold their November Business meeting on Monday, November 23, 2009. You can download a printable agenda by clicking here. The agenda is below:

Meeting of the Board of Trustees

Monday, November 23, 2009

6:00 p.m. – District Office Board Room


I. Call to Order

Approval of Agenda

(Under consent agenda, all action items will be voted on after one motion and second to approve them without discussion. If a board member wants any action item discussed or voted on separately, the board member, before the agenda is approved, must ask that the action item be moved to the discussion item section.)

II. Citizen Participation

III. Special Business

A. Recognition of Dr. Al Leonard by the Journalism Education & National Scholastic Press Assocs.

B. Recognition of Dr. Cynthia Smith, Cathy Griffin & Bud Cope as Social Studies Educators of Distinction

C. Recognition of Rock Hill’s Adult Education Program

D. Recognition of Dr. Lynn Moody as Superintendent of the Year by S.C. Adult Education Directors

IV. Consent Action Agenda

A. Approval of Minutes

1. October 26, 2009 business meeting

2. November 9, 2009 work session

B. Approval of Personnel Recommendations

C. Approval of Overnight Field Trip Requests (2)

D. Approval of Amended 2009-10 Budget

V. Communications

VI. Report of the Superintendent

A. Announcements

B. Outreach Report

C. Human Resources/Professional Development Report

D. Reassignment

VII. Review of Work Session

VIII. Action Agenda

A. Use of Facilities Request – RH Volleyball Club

B. Use of Facilities Request – Impact Community Church

C. Policies IKF, IJ – 2nd Reading

D. Policies GBEB, GCF, GCQA/GCQB, GDF – 2nd Reading

E. Policy DFAC – 1st Reading

F. New Course Proposals

IX. Other Business

X. Executive Session – Student Matters

XI. Adjourn

Best Place to Raise a Family?

For the second consecutive year, Rock Hill has been selected by BusinessWeek magazine as one of the best places in the U.S. to raise a family. One city from each state was selected based on school performance, household expenditures, crime rate, air quality, job growth, family income, diversity, museums/parks/theaters, and other amenities. The magazine states to readers: "If it's all about schools for you, Rock Hill, S.C., also took its second win." BusinessWeek touted that our public schools are among the best in the state, and "it can't hurt that the city is home to Winthrop University, which was ranked as one of the best public universities in the Southeast in 2006."

Adviser Cathy Griffin and Northwestern's Model UN teams (Russia and China) won top awards recently at the regional Model UN competition at Clemson University.

Lynn Fulton-Archer, world language specialist at Richmond Drive, has been elected to the board of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL).

Beverly Laney, choral director at SPHS, had 17 students audition for the S.C. All-State Chorus and 13 (or 59% of her chorus) made it.

Jonathan Hall, choral director at RHHS, had 10 students accepted in the S.C. All-State Chorus. Six students made the honors choir, and two made a perfect score on sight reading.

The NHS Choral Department, directed by Eugene Bumgardner, will present its Annual Christmas Concert on Dec. 2, 3, and 4. Along with the Troubadours, Singers, Trouveres, and Encore, the Rawlinson Road chorus will be featured on Dec. 2, while the choruses from Sullivan and Dutchman Creek will perform on Dec. 3. The Dec. 4 performance will feature all four choruses. Admission will be $5/adults and $3/students.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Help With Student Power Point Presentations

Dave Paradi has a blog which gives great tips for PowerPoint presentations. Today's entry has some tips for school children. His 5 tips are:

1. Organize your story

2. Use a simple slide design

3. Use lots of pictures

4. Use cue cards or notes

5. Rehearse at home and it will be fun

You can read a full explanation of his tips by visiting his web site by clicking here.

Webcam Interviews?

Technology has been a frequent topic on my blog postings. Earlier this year, I was impressed that the Rock Hill School District had done some job interviews using Skype. I have not used Skype, but am familiar with it. This Time Magazine article, How Skype Is Changing the Job Interview, shows how technology is changing the job placement process. The video below shows how the Skype process works and gives some tips on making it successful.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Looking For A Neat Christmas Gift?

Looking for a way to help a child this Christmas? Give a donation to the Dolly Parton Imagination Library. A donation of $30 will sponsor a child (birth through 5 years) with an age-appropriate hard-cover book each month. $150 will sponsor a child birth through age 5. Send your donation to: The Early Learning Partnership of York County at 120 Withers Building, Winthrop University, Rock Hill, SC 29733. To find out more, call (803) 323-2180

Northside Elementary School of the Arts, Rock Hill's Best Kept Secret?

Rock Hill School District's award winning Northside Elementary School of the Arts might soon be available to all district students as our third school of choice. The school is investigating that possibility for the 2010-11 school year.
What would make this school worthy of choice?
For one, every child participates. If they attend K - 5, they will participate in 6 on stage performances during their time at Northside. Think about it. The number one fear people have is public speaking, overcoming stage fright will give students self confidence to interact and become engaged in learning.
The School received the Creative Ticket National School of Distinction for Arts Integration Award from the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in 2006-07. The only non magnet school to do so. The staff is trained in arts integration and is the only elementary school in York County to have certified arts teachers in dance, drama, music, and visual art. All students participate in grade level presentations. Fifth grade produces a full musical Disney Broadway Kids show.
Northside is Rock Hill's best kept secret, but hopefully, not for very long.
Now, for that Red Cockaded Woodpecker in the upper left corner, look close and you'll see students, teachers and parents. Watch the 14 minute video below to see how they did it.

A Woodpecker's Dream from Daniel Dancer on Vimeo.

You can watch the schools 2008 performance at The Kennedy Center by clicking here. (RealPlayer required)

Northside's staff is pictured below:

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Northwestern High School Cheerleaders Win Upper State

The Northwestern Varsity Cheerleaders earned the top spot at the Upper State Qualifier Monday Night. This is the first time in school history that the cheerleaders have won the Upper State Championship! The girls will compete on Saturday, Nov. 21 for the State Title!

Article on Sullivan Middle School in The AP Insight E-newsletter

Creating a Culture of Caring and Excellence
By Michael Waiksnis, principal, Sullivan Middle School, Rock Hill, SC; and Gwen Lindsey, Jennise Knight, and Darin Pearson, assistant principals at Sullivan

Do you overhear comments like, "Wow, this school is focused on excellence and reaches out to everyone" and, "Everyone feels welcomed here—they really roll out the red carpet!" when you are on parking lot duty each afternoon? We do! And we are happy to share the strategies we use at Sullivan Middle School in Rock Hill, SC, to create a positive climate that is focused on excellence. (Continue reading)

Rock Hill School Board Work Session Notes

No action was taken at the Rock Hill School Board's November Work Session held on Monday, November 9, 2009. Direction was given in the following areas:
  • The administration will develop a recommendation to reassign students from Mt. Holly and Oakdale to improve balance.
  • The administration will bring to the November Business meeting a proposal to add 8 courses to the high school course catalog (Honors Orchestra, Art IV Honors, Desktop Publishing, HL IB Mathematics, AP Human Geography, Control and Inventory Management in Warehouses and Distribution Centers, Renaissance 101, and SC History).
  • The administration will recommend a wording change to Policy DFAC (Fund Balance) which will clear up the fund balance amount to be targeted.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Rock Hill High's Playoff Bracket Has Been Announced

Rock Hill's 2009 Football playoff bracket has been announced. You can get a printable copy by clicking here.

Northwestern and South Pointe High School 2009 Playoff Bracket Announced

The Class 4A Division Football Playoff Bracket has been announced. You can get a printable copy by clicking here.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Rock Hill School Board To Talk About Reassignment at Monday's Work Session

The Rock Hill School Board will have their November Work Session on Monday, November 9, 2009 at Independence Elementary School, starting at 5:30 pm. Reassignment questions being posed to the board are:
  • Do we reassign students from Mt. Holly and Oakdale to achieve improved balance?
  • Do we reassign students from Mt. Holly, Oakdale, Lesslie, Northside, and Belleview to achieve improved balance? (This would mean reassigning students from multiple schools - more than those listed, create new pockets, and have students traveling through school zones)
  • Do we review data this year, assess economic impact on school population this year, and target elementary reassignment for 2010-2011?
You can download a copy of agenda by clicking here.
SCHOOL BOARD WORK SESSION Text Box: Professional Code Put Students First Nurture Relationships Work Together for a Shared Vision Grow Professionally Continuously Find Ways to Improve
LOCATION: Independence Elementary School START: 5:30 p.m. DATE: November 9, 2009 ITEM# AGENDA TOPIC DISCUSSION LEADER 1 Presentation by Independence Elementary School Mary Chandler-McVann 2 New Course Proposals for High School Sheila Huckabee 3 45-day Enrollment Report Luanne Kokolis 4 Reassignment Luanne Kokolis 5 Schlechty Conference Debrief Lynn Moody 6 Fund Balance Policy DFAC Bill Mabry 7 General Fund Budget Amendments Elaine Bilton

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

News From The Rock Hill School District

Rock Hill Schools is working closely with the S.C. Dept. of Heath in coordinating efforts to make H1N1 immunizations available in our schools.

Elementary School Parents will receive consent forms this week. The forms must be signed and returned by Nov. 13 for students to receive an immunization (shot only) on the "tentative" dates of Nov. 19, 20, 23, and 24. Once elementary students are served and additional vaccine becomes available, middle and high school students, again with parental consent, can be immunized.

When immunizations are provided in the schools, district employees (no family members) can be immunized at no cost.
Last year's state runners-up, the Rock Hill High Band of Distinction, will compete for the state championship at S. C. State University this Saturday.

South Pointe's Theatre Department will present Neil Simon's "The Odd Couple," a hilarious two hours of some of the greatest comic writing in contemporary theatre. Show times will be Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2:00. Tickets will be $5 for students and $8 for adults.

The Applied Technology Center will have a car show on Saturday, Nov. 7, from 10 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.

Last year's 4A state marching band champions, the Northwestern Purple Regiment, were this years runner-up at the state championship on Oct. 31.
The South Pointe Band of Thunder placed fourth in the state 3A championship on Oct. 31.

York County has some of the finest marching band programs in the state. Fort Mill won the 4A competition and Nation Ford won the 3A.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Results From the October 26, 2009 Rock Hill School Board Business Meeting

The following action items were approved by all 7 Board Members:
  • Consent agenda including minutes and and personnel
  • Second and Final Reading of Policies; JCR; JIH; JLCEE; and JIHC
  • First reading of Policies; IKF; IJ; GBEB; GCF; GCQB; and GDF
  • Suspended Policy DFAC to allow the fund balance to go below the minimum amount set in policy to cover for reduced state funding.
  • Letter to local legislative delegation (below)

The Honorable Robert W. Hayes, Jr.

205 Gressette BIdg

Columbia, SC 29201

Dear Senator Hayes:

The City of Rock Hill, Rock Hill Schools and York County are submitting this letter to you

today to express our strong opposition of H3272. We collectively have several concerns with

the bill in its present form. H3272 goes against Act 388's original intent of preventing long time

homeowners from being taxed out of their homes. By placing this financial burden on longtime

homeowners in our community and not allowing property taxes to equal actual value, the

already unfair and inequitable taxing structure for homeowners will be further complicated.

Furthermore, this appears to be an attempt to fix an economic problem without credible

research demonstrating that point of sale positively affects home sales.

By H3272 protecting rapidly appreciating property from ever being taxed at 100 percent,

the burden of revenue losses will, once again, fall on the shoulders of our respective

organizations. Moreover, commercial and industrial businesses in our area may be faced with

additional tax increases that are necessary to continue essential services. With the impact of

the reduction in revenues from Act 388, budget cuts from the state, and overall downturn in the

economy, this is simply a loss that none of us can afford to take.

We are asking you to vote against H3272 and the consequences it will have on our

community. Should you have any questions or need additional information about our

opposition, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thank you for your consideration of this request and your commitment to bettering the

lives of citizens in Rock Hill and York County.


Doug Echols, Mayor Bob Norwood, Board Chair Houston "Buddy" Motz, Council Chair

City of Rock Hill Rock Hill Schools York County

Rock Hill Schools Announce 45 Day Student Count

Student Distribution As of October 22, 2009 45th day count School Name 2009 Totals Difference From 2008 Old Pointe 615 26 Rosewood 604 (6) Ebinport 533 (30) Richmond Drive 524 (15) India Hook 506 6 Independence 501 (8) Mt. Gallant 501 (8) Mt. Holly 500 15 Finley Road 495 (47) Lesslie 490 29 York Road 489 (22) Oakdale 476 (73) Belleview 460 9 Sunset Park 444 128 Sylvia Circle 389 59 Northside 353 (22) Ebenezer Ave. 317 (4) Early Childhood 319 (15) Dutchman Creek 875 129 Saluda Trail 866 (1) Castle Heights 788 50 Sullivan 751 (53) Rawlinson Road 704 (62) Rock Hill 1,998 (41) Northwestern 1,791 1 South Pointe 1,415 6 Totals 17,718 65

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