School board ready for new year

First Posted: 7/21/2009

The Mount Airy City Board of Education spent time getting ready for the coming school year at Tuesday nights meeting.
Dr. Darrin Hartness, superintendent, informed the board about a number of upcoming events in the school system including orientations at all of the schools, the schedules for which are posted on the school systems Web site. He also told them about freshman orientation at the high school, which will take place on Aug. 12, as well as Camp Middle School for rising sixth graders July 28-29.
This will give them a chance to get acclimated and figure out how to do that pesky lock on the lockers, said Hartness of Camp Middle School.
Hartness updated the board on his presentation to the Surry County Board of Commissioners Monday night as well as the fact that the commissioners will discuss the topic once again at tonights meeting. He presented them the option of applying for Qualified School Construction Bonds, which are available as part of the federal stimulus package. The deadline for the application process is July 31.
We have everything documented that we need for that, said Hartness. We could get to work right away.
Hartness also presented the action items for the coming school year that the board agreed upon at its retreat in June. These items, which will fall into sub-categories of already-existing board goals, include such items as encouraging parental involvement, evaluating and monitoring the reading programs in existence to determine which is the most effective, exploring innovative funding sources, and learning more about what technology the school system should purchase and training the staff to implement it effectively.
The board also discussed possible community linkage topics for the coming year. These topics are used to expand on issues within the school system and create an open dialogue between the board members and members of the community, including parents, teachers, staff, volunteers and others. Some examples of suggested topics include continuing a discussion on physical fitness and health education in schools, continuing the discussion on economic development and how schools can be an effective part of that process and looking at career paths available for students and how the school system is preparing them for that.
The board will only meet once each month for August, September and October as opposed to its usual bi-monthly meetings. The meetings will take place on the third Tuesday of each of these months.
Contact Morgan Wall at [email protected] of 719-1929.

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