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The time has come for a fresh start: Schools prepare for a new year

Teachers and members of the Highland Home community help to beautify the school before students head back for the new school year on Aug. 7. Submitted Photo

By: Shayla Terry & Elizabeth Ruckel

On Monday, Aug. 7 the school doors will swing open to begin the 2017-2018 school year at Crenshaw County Schools.

To prepare for the new year, school officials as well as residents have decided to take pride in their schools. The Crenshaw County Board of Education held its annual institute day for all of the teachers in the three school systems.

Principals and teachers throughout the Crenshaw County School System gathered at Brantley High School for Institute Day. Submitted Photo

“We get all of the teachers together to kick off the new school year,” Crenshaw County superintendent Dr. Boyd English said. “We launch the new school with ideas and themes that will unify our approach to providing the best academic experience for our students. It was fantastic!”

During the institute, teachers were encouraged to get into their “beast mode” for the upcoming school year.

“We’ve coined the phase that we are going to unleash the beast of creativity and innovation in our classrooms across the county,” English said. “Our faculty is second to none, and we want them to have an enjoyable year pushing our students to places that they never thought they could be.

For this year, the school board is continuing to expand opportunities with their career technology curriculum. Last year, students began working through the Odysseyware online curriculum. Students were able to take advanced placement classes, as well as credit recovery classes. The system even had a student complete her senior year through the Odysseyware program.

“We’re expanding our career technology curriculum and advanced placement curriculum to include not only Luverne schools, but at Brantley and Highland Home as well. We’ll be providing an advanced history course.”

The board has also entered into partnership with Lurleen B. Wallace Community College for senior students to take Ready to Work courses at the Luverne Center.

The Ready to Work program offers individuals the chance to learn skills such as problem solving, computer skills, manufacturing, job acquisition, team building, workplace behavior, communication and more.

“The Ready to Work opportunity will be a class that is provided at LBW,” English said. “Hopefully, second semester will be able to provide the opportunity to enter into the program for our juniors.”

On Monday evening, members of the Highland Home community volunteered to help at the Highland Home annual campus clean-up.

The Parent Teacher Association president, Sunny Sexton, and members of the community took the time out of their day to help improve Highland Home School.

Many improvements were made throughout the campus including planting flowers in the front lawn, picking up trash, trimming hedges and digging up old rocks and bricks.

PTA fundraised money to make big changes on the playground. With the money, the basketball poles were painted, swings were replaced, new backboards for the basketball goals and a replacement piece for the slide was ordered. Mulch will be added and the holes on the basketball court will be patched. PTA donated the monkey bars to a church and covered where it was.

“We are so excited about the new year and the changes that have been made,” Sexton said. “There are more changes that need to be made, but a lot of progress has been made. Highland Home is thankful for the hard work of the community members and staff at HHS that helped improve the school.”

In the future, PTA will level out the playground with dirt, add more mulch, and take out the fireman pole.

Brantley Schools will hold its pride day to clean up the campus on Saturday, Aug. 5 at 8 a.m.

“The pride days are very important to the schools and their communities,” English said. “Every community in our system has tremendous pride, and we definitely tap into that pride to ensure that we are ready for the new year. It’s going to be a great year.”