|August 24, 2010||Baldwyn funding, Healthy Schools and Tupelo anti-bullying plan||no comments|
|August 24, 2010||TPSD School Board, Aug. 24||no comments|
|July 30, 2010||University task force||1 comments|
|March 30, 2010||Joyner’s Justice named Parent of Year||no comments|
|March 09, 2010||Lee County School Board Notes March 9||no comments|
|March 09, 2010||Tupelo School Board Update March 9, 2010||no comments|
|January 27, 2010||She wasn't kidding when she said she wanted good grades||2 comments|
|January 26, 2010||Computer questions, part 2||no comments|
|January 19, 2010||Aliyah Lee wins Lee County bee||no comments|
|January 19, 2010||Computer questions||no comments|
A few other notes from this afternoon:
• Baldwyn was announced as the recipient of Mississippi Department of Transportation funding under the Safe Routes to School program. The project will connect sidewalks from Baldwyn Elementary to Baldwyn Middle School and Baldwyn High School, including a path near downtown. The nearly $400,000 project will be funded by the Federal Highway Administration.
Verona is planning on applying for this year's Safe Routes to School program. The program seeks to help make it safer for children to bike and walk to and from school.
• The Tupelo School District posted an anti-bullying plan on its website after last week's controversy involving the Facebook video of one student kicking another in the head at a bus stop. Director of Public Relations Kay Bishop said that the district had already been working on the plan. It includes the development of anonymous hotlines, online drop boxes and physical drop boxes for reporting instances of bullying. It also includes additional training for staff on topics like cyber-bullying. Bishop said the district is planning an anti-bullying campaign in October to coincide with national anti-bullying month.
• Five Northeast Mississippi schools are among 19 in the state that have been recognized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s HealthierUS School Challenge. West, East and South Corinth Elementary Schools each received “Gold” status, while New Albany Elementary and Sudduth Elementary in Starkville received "Silver" status.
Corinth's three schools are among only five in the state to be awarded “Gold” status, and Corinth is the only district in the state to have three schools honored with any status. More on all of these stories will be available in Wednesday's Daily Journal.
Corinth's three schools are among only five in the state to be awarded “Gold” status, and Corinth is the only district in the state to have three schools honored with any status.
More on all of these stories will be available in Wednesday's Daily Journal.
I just returned from Tupelo's school board meeting. The biggest news out of the meeting is that the district will study the merits of changing to a block schedule at Tupelo High School for the 2011-12 school year. This doesn't mean that anything will change.
Superintendent Randy Shaver said that the school's current 48-minute eight-period day does not allow for enough time for in-depth rigorous instruction in individual classes. Block schedule may or may not be the answer. Assistant Superintendent Fred Hill said research is mixed on the impact of block schedule, and Shaver said he doesn't have any prejudgement either way. A district committee will consider different types of block schedule or even shorting the day to six-periods with more time for each class.
I'll have more information from their proposal to study the idea in Wednesday's Daily Journal.
What do you think would be best for the school? Do periods need to be longer? Would a block schedule be too disruptive?
Read tomorrow's Daily Journal for more information.
Recently finished writing a couple of stories about the new task force between the University of Mississippi and Mississippi State University dedicated to boosting the fortunes of Northeast Mississippi.
The stories will appear in Sunday's paper. Please read them and let me know what you think about the task force and how successful you believe it will be.
In the meantime, here is an assortment of quotes compiled from interviews with various task force members:
• David Shaw, MSU, vice president for Research and Economic Development
“Education is one of the most critical issues facing northeast Mississippi. So many other issues that we face in this region can be addressed by enhancing education.”
• Richard Blackbourn, MSU, dean of College of Education
“Obviously we have an under educated citizenry. We have high dropout rates and low graduation rates. We do not have enough people taking advantages of the higher education opportunies in the region which are numerous both through community colleges and universities.”
• Dan Jones, UM, chancellor
“It was clear to everybody that education is both a big issue for our state and a big part of our challenge.
Other big problems that come with that are challenges in economic development and lower per capita income. Intertwined is that people with lower levels of education and lower income have trouble with their health.”
• Lynne Richadson, MSU, dean of College of Business and Industry
“My personal opinion is that, hands down, the greatest challenge is K-12 education in the area and state. Poorly educated people inhibit economic development and are a drain on all of us.
Hopefully the task force can figure out ways to address this challenge and turn it into an opportunity for the region.”
• Andy Mullins, UM, chief of staff to the chancellor
“There has been plenty of research on the problems in Northeast Mississippi. This is using two research universities to expand the possible solutions for meeting the needs.”
• Larry Ridgeway, UM, vice chancellor for Student Affairs
“An educated workforce, all of us agree, will be important to attract those folks who bring the higher paiying jobs.”
• Ken Cyree, UM, dean of the School of Business Administration
“From my perspective, one of the greatest challenges in North Mississippi is creating a environment where business flourishes and creates valuable opportunities for Mississippians. The solution to the problem is multi-faceted, but viable businesses will create jobs that help provide a better life for our citizens.”
• Alex Cheng, UM, dean of the School of Engineering
“We try to produce a greater work force in the engineering and technology areas. These are high-paid jobs. If we can challenge more people into those areas, their incomes will rise.”
• Kyle Steward, MSU, executive director of external affairs
“The importance of this effort is evidenced by the hands-on attention Dr. Keenum and Chancellor Jones have devoted to it, as well as the involvement of so many key administrators from both universities.”
• Mark Keenum, MSU, president
“I think Dan Jones in his presentation had it right. He said he viewd his role and really my role (on the task force) as being cheerleaders. We’re to help faciliate on our campuse, to urge those who have the most knowledge in their areas of expertise to be able to work with their counterparts at the University of Mississippi and vice versa. We will do everything in our power to help them obtain the resources to be successful.”
• Jerry Gilbert, MSU, provost and executive vice-president
“We can demonstrate a commitment to the region and a commitment to work with leaders in the region to work on solutions. We have a lot of talent in our faculty and those individuals can work to come up with solutions.”
• Linda Chitwood, UM, dean of School of Applied Science
"For the task force, success will be the development and implementation of a focused intervention which utilizes the combined resources of our universities and the region to address one or more of the most critical issues facing Northeast Mississippi.
"For Northeast Mississippi, success will be reflected in higher levels of education leading to higher per capita income and healthier individuals, families and communities."
• Lewis Whitfield, CREATE senior vice-president
“I think it is potentially very powerful for the region, and I believe if the universities are successful through this task force, it can serve as a model for other regions in Mississippi.”
Lee County Schools named Jason West as their Parent of the Year and Candace Moore as their Administrator of the Year.
West has children at all three Mooreville schools but represented Mooreville Middle School.
Moore is principal at Shannon Primary School.
Lee County also adopted its calendar. Students will begin class on Aug. 5 and end the school year on May 24.
Read Wednesday's Daily Journal for more on both stories.
Just got back from the Tupelo School Board meeting and a couple of items of note:
• The 2010-11 School Year will begin on August 4. The district will take holidays on Columbus Day and President's Day in addition to their regular set of holidays.
• Lee Tucker was voted school board president. Past president Mike Clayborne will be rotating off the board some time in October. Amy Heyer was elected Vice President and Eddie Prather was chosen Secretary. Those terms are for one year.
More on both stories in tomorrow's Daily Journal. I'll also have an update from tonight's Lee County School Board meeting later this evening. That meeting begins at 5 and will be held at Saltillo High School.
Some of you might have seen this last week, but a mom in Georgia was arrested after she made her son kill his pet hamster as a punishment for bad grades
If that's not bad enough, she made him kill it with a hammer.
Is this the wildest punishment you've heard for bad grades? Or does anyone have a story that can top this one?
I haven't heard any new questions about the TPSD computer program since Sunday's story. I just wanted to create another forum in case anyone had some, I'd be glad to answer.
If you've got something burning in your mind, just post below.
Plantersville fifth-grader Aliyah Lee won Tuesday's Lee County spelling bee at the Hancock Leadership Center. After eight rounds and 32 words, the winning word was "competitive."
Nettleton's Brittany Hieb was second and Nettleton's Trey O'Neal was third.
Aliyah will advance to the MidSouth Spelling Bee in Memphis in March. The winner of that competes in the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington D.C. in May.
See tomorrow's Journal for more about Tuesday's bee.
I'm working on a story package about the Tupelo Public School District computer initiative. Teachers have begun receiving their new computers and high school seniors will get theirs ini February.
One of the goals of the package is to answer questions about the initiative. Are there any specific questions you'd like to see me address. Please post them below or email me at: email@example.com.