The proposed calendar was unanimously approved by the school district’s calendar committee, said Travis Hamby, the Trigg County School Assistant Superintendent for Operations and Personnel. He explained that the calendar has 185 days and includes five staff planning days instead of 25 Friday professional development/early release days, wherein school let out at 1:30 p.m. on Fridays.
“We know it’s a big change,” Hamby said, adding that he wants the board to “make an informed decision.”
Ann Taylor, principal of Trigg County Primary School, Brian Futrell, principal of Trigg County Intermediate School, James Mangels, principal of Trigg County Middle School and Neal Cummins, principal of Trigg County High School all spoke out in favor of the staff planning days.
Futrell in particular said that even though school officially let out at 1:30 p.m., by the time the last school bus left the school it might be about 1:45, and also said that it’s difficult to complete the tasks they need to complete in an hour and a half.
“The bottom line is, you could start an initiative, but you never really finished it,” said Futrell.
The calendar shows that the first day of school would be Wednesday, Aug. 11, with the last day of students set at Monday, May 16, 2011. It also includes a two-day fall break instead of a five-day fall break.
The two other options have school going from Aug. 4 – May 18 and from Aug. 5 – May 20
The board will vote on either the proposed calendar or one of the two other options when they meet again on Thursday, May 14.
The board unanimously approved the amended 2009-2010 school calendar to reflect the make-up days. The last day for students has been set at Thursday, May 27, while the closing day is Friday, May 28.
The board also approved a letter of agreement between the Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation and Trigg County High School for the Advance KY grant, with an estimated cost of $72,000.
Trigg County Assistant Superintendent of Instruction Beth Sumner said that the typical $86 fee has been waived and students with a qualifying score will receive a $100 cash bonus, and she added that there are other benefits.
Additionally, there will three new Advanced Placement (AP) classes added to the high school schedule: AP statistics, AP environmental science and AP English language, Sumner said.
In other news, the board spent almost two hours discussing continuous assessment and in particular ThinkLink and the Learning Checks. The four principals discussed the test results and said there was much room for improvement in the test scores.
One of the math teachers present discussed his concerns about ThinkLink. Trigg County School Superintendent Tim McGinnis said that while he thinks that ThinkLink isn’t perfect, the idea of continuous assessment is sound and helped bring about the district’s academic achievements.
Board members unanimously and officially approved Travis Hamby as the new Trigg County School Superintendent, an office he will hold on July 1, the day after McGinnis formally retires.
The board also unanimously approved Hamby’s contract for $105,000. Trigg County School Board Chairman Mike Davis said the board is happy with the selection committee’s decision and the job that Hamby has done as the assistant superintendent of personnel for the past three years.
In other business, the board voted to declare various computers and audio-visual equipment as surplus. Trigg County Board Member Sheila Martin asked if some of it could be given away to people that could use it, but Sumner said that wouldn’t be possible.