The DeKalb County School System has announced that three educators, Kathy Lawrence, Carrie Gottlied and Linda Paris have been selected "Teachers of the Year" locally and will compete for regional honors in the Tennessee Teacher of the Year Program.
Dr. Carol Hendrix, Supervisor of Instruction for grades 7-12, made the announcement during Thursday night's school board meeting. "Again this year, we're going to participate in the Teacher of the Year process, which begins on the school level, moves to the system level, the regional level, and finally to the state level. As we did last year, we had an individual from out of the county to select the Teachers of the Year at the system wide level."
"In pre-kindergarten through fourth grade, we have Karen Knowles from Smithville Elementary, Crystal Young from Smithville Elementary, Kathy Lawrence from DeKalb West School, and Kathy Bryant from Northside Elementary School. Kathy Lawrence was chosen on the system wide level and will go on to the regional level."
"In grades 5 through 8, Carrie Gottlied from Northside Elementary, Pat Allen from DeKalb West School, Pat Barnes from DeKalb Middle School, and Vicky Terrell from DeKalb Middle School were chosen and Carrie Gottlied will be going on to the regional level."
"In the 9th through 12th grade, which is DeKalb County High School, we have two teachers, Leslie Rice and Linda Paris and Linda Paris was chosen to go on to the regional competition which will be February 27th. Should they win there, they will go on to the state level in March. Last year we had a teacher who was Teacher of the Year at the regional level, Lisa Cripps. She did go to the state and did very well there."
The Tennessee Teacher of the Year Program is designed to promote recognition, respect and appreciation for teachers; to stimulate interest in teaching as a career; and to encourage public involvement in education.
This program is sponsored annually by the Tennessee Department of Education and the Niswonger Foundation.
The Tennessee Teacher of the Year represents Tennessee at the National Teacher of the Year competition, which is sponsored by the Council of Chief State School Officers and Scholastic, Inc.
Teachers of the Year are selected competitively through five cycles: Building, System, Field Service Center Region, Grand Division and State; and from three categories (levels of teaching); Grades Pre K-4, 5-8, 9-12.
Teachers selected at each cycle receive local recognition and awards underwritten by local sources. State recognition/awards include a banquet honoring the nine State Teacher of the Year finalists and certificates of appreciation from the Governor. In addition, the State Finalists and the State Teacher of the Year receive cash awards from the Niswonger Foundation.
Meanwhile, the local school system has been approved for a $6,000 Model Dropout Prevention Program grant.
The announcement was made by Dr. Danielle Collins, Federal Programs Supervisor, during Thursday night's school board meeting.
Under the program the school system plans to initiate a Family Math Night for parents and students who attend the fourth grade at Northside Elementary School. Officials say they are concerned about consistently low math scores in fourth grade and the probable history of these students' parents who dropped out of school. A Math Night for parents and students would provide an opportunity for parents and students to learn grade appropriate math skills together in an effort to promote positive learning and parental involvement. First Bank will partner with the school system in offering this program. Skills such as addition, subtraction, division, and multiplication in conjunction with balancing a checkbook will be taught to parents and students. Other standards such as percentages, place value, and ratios will be covered in real world scenarios.
Director of Schools Mark Willoughby presented his monthly update on personnel.
Those employed for the 2008-09 school year since last month include Charles Rodgers, a teacher at DeKalb County High School and Charles L. Cantrell, a substitute custodian.
Matthew Carpenter, Sara Jared, and Jalene Vanatta have been named substitute teachers.
Elizabeth Redmon has been transferred to DeKalb West School as an educational assistant and Tena Edwards has been transferred from Federal educational assistant to General Purpose..
Wendy Bowling, a Smithville Elementary School Educational Assistant has been granted a leave; Kitty Thomas, teacher at DeKalb Middle School; Truitt Hale, custodian at DeKalb Middle School, Sabrina Kirksey, teacher at Northside Elementary; and Mary Joines, a bus assistant have all been granted a leave of absence as requested.
Alisha Cheatham, part-time speech pathologist has resigned.
In other action, the board voted to ask permission from the county commission to bid three new school buses for delivery in August 2009 including one 72 passenger and two 78 passenger buses to be funded in the 2009-2010 general purpose school budget. Plans are to have the buses seat belt ready along with installation of a three way camera system for better viewing of students in the front, middle, and back of the buses.
Brad Leach, CTE Director requested the board to approve programs of study for career and technical education. The state is requiring that all career and technical education programs have a program of study in place for the 2009-2010 school year. Under the program, students in career and technical education must choose a career cluster and complete at least three course offerings (credits) in a program of study. For example, if a student chooses the career cluster- Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics, he or she must complete three of the following course offerings in the Automotive Technology program of study: Transportation Core, Brake Systems, Steering and Suspension, and Engine Performance.
Leach says students will declare a program of study during the eighth grade registration for high school and begin by taking the introductory course in their freshman year. "All eighth graders coming in will have to declare some type of program of study. The one thing about putting this in the freshman academy again is that a 10th, 11th or 12th grader who is wanting to take an introductory course will not be mixed in with those freshmen. The freshmen will be by themselves in this introductory course. If a student wants to take an introductory course, we will have to create a class for them. We'll probably have to do this the first year to pick up the 10th graders that are in the freshman academy now. We do have some dual credit/post secondary college offerings for students. Hopefully, by this fall every program of study will have some type of post secondary/articulation or dual credit agreements that students will be able to use their credits in high school in order to go onto college and it will satisfy some of those requirements for college credit."
The board granted Leach's request.
Dr. Bill Tanner, Principal at Smithville Elementary School, updated the board on the new computer lab at the school. "At the elementary school our computer lab is used daily on the fast forward reading program and also with intervention programs with our children who are not reaching the levels they need to reach in reading. Our computers had gotten to the point where they couldn't be fixed anymore so I talked to Brad Mullinax (Technology Coordinator) and Mr. (Mark) Willoughby (Director of Schools) and we decided we would replace the towers. It was going to cost around $30,000 to replace everything so we decided we would go ahead and replace the towers. I talked to the PTO people and they agreed to replace the monitors with flat screen monitors. We also got some new headphones. So I'd like to thank the school board, Mr. Willoughby, and the PTO. We have a new computer lab at the elementary school and I'd like to invite each and everyone of you to come and visit it and see our new computer lab."
In routines business, the board granted approval for an overnight trip for members of the Health Occupations Students of America Club to attend a state conference in Chattanooga March 23rd through 25th .
An overnight trip request was approved for the DCHS boys soccer team to attend an invitational soccer tournament at Franklin County High School in Winchester on Saturday, March 21st through Sunday, March 22nd.
The DCHS boys soccer team was granted permission to play a soccer match at Jackson County during school hours on Monday, March 30th. Permission was also granted for an in school match to be played at home on Tuesday, March 24th with Jackson County.
The board approved a request for members of the FCCLA club to attend a state leadership meeting April 7th-9th at the Opryland Hotel.
Members of the FFA were granted permission to attend the state convention in Gatlinburg March 29th through April 2nd.
The board granted permission for a fundraiser at DeKalb Middle School. All proceeds from the candy sale February 23rd through March 27th will be for the general account.
The board also authorized a trip for board members to attend the "Day on the Hill" Legislative Conference February 24th.
The school board meeting next month will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 10th instead of Thursday, March 12th.