Four Schools Meet All AYP Requirements
Four Wetzel County Schools – Long Drain School, Paden City Elementary School, Magnolia High School and Valley High School – met federal and state requirements in all categories or subgroups to achieve adequate yearly progress, as required by the US No Child Left Behind Act.
Of the other schools, New Martinsville School missed the mark in the special needs and socioeconomic status groups, while Short Line school missed only in the special needs category. Hundred and Paden City high schools’ graduation rates were below the required 80 percent benchmark, according to an AYP report submitted by county director of student assessment Tammy Wells to the Aug. 16 meeting of the board of education. Wells noted, however, that all schools met AYP in the all schools category.
County students and schools gave that performance despite – or perhaps because of- ramped up criteria established in WESTEST 2, implemented this spring, that raise the scoring expectations to that set by the National Association of Educational Progress, often called the Nation’s Report Card.
“We are proud that all of our schools met the standard set forth for achievement in the ‘all’ category,” Wells’ reported, “and are understanding of the challenges faced by our schools with more than 50 (students) in a subgroup.” Schools with fewer than 50 students in a category are scored separately and differently from schools that have 50 or more students.
And, “The smaller the school, the worse it is,” added County Superintendent Bill Jones.
Wells and Dee Myers, county director of elementary education and Title I, also reported on summer school activities. “We are proud that 20 students successfully completed … courses through a web-based credit recovery program,” added Wells.
In addition, Myers told the board that the 2512 Program also was successful in passing through more than 40 at-risk third and eight graders who took this accelerated program to make up credits rather than repeat a grade level.
Brian Jones, director of ancillary services, reported that the four-week summer food program served more than 2,500 breakfasts and more than 3,450 lunches to students and adults at three sites, PCES, SLS, and LDS. Meals were also served at Hundred High School, Valley High School, and Magnolia High School, which included Friday lunches at Bruce Park. Included in that number, Jones noted, were many children who might otherwise gone without a meal.
The four-week summer meal program provided employment to more than 50 local teachers, cooks, custodians, and bus operators and was funded through grants written by Myers and and Jones, as well as Title I monies. The grants appear to be sustainable through next year.
Brian Jones also reported on a large number of repair and maintenance projects throughout the county, perhaps the two largest of which were a roof replacement at HHS and HVAC renovations at NMS. Both projects were funded by 75/25 percent split with the West Virginia School Building Authority and are on target to be completed by the first day for students this year.
The board authorized renewal of a lease with the Paden City Development Authority for $4,000 for the former PCES building on state Route 2. The lease specifies a fee of $20 per hour, with a maximum of 200 hours. Several county athletic teams use the facility for practices.
When the new multi-purpose building at PCHS is completed, leasing the premises will no longer be required. The structure is erected on land owned by the board. Under an agreement cut last year with the Paden City Boosters organization, which funded the new building, the facility will have space for both sporting and academic or other uses and can be used by the county for those purposes.
In addition, the building will have concession and meeting areas for the boosters group.
The board also approved a schedule for meeting with Local School Improvement Councils in the county, a long-established custom, similar to a “government to the people” program. On Sept. 8, the board will meet at HHS; on Oct. 4, at PCHS; on Oct. 18 at VHS; and on Nov. 1, at MHS.
In addition, the board approved a request for a child to continue attending PCES for the 2010-11 school year. It also approved requests from the parents of six other children to attend schools in other counties.
Before adjourning, the board approved a large number of employment issues for this year, chaperones, volunteers, and fund raisers.
The board also passed on second and final reading two new or revised policies that govern the use of cell phone and other electronic devices in schools and protocols for guests visiting schools.