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BOE propose new Alternative School

The Butler County Board of Education met to discuss changes and future goals during last Thursday night’s board meeting in the Central Office Board Room. It was a night of change with the approval of the new Alternative School Program proposal for the 2018-19 school year.

The Board began with the recognition of the Greenville High School band and choral students.

“Multiple studies will confirm the direct correlation between music skills and academic results,” Superintendent Dr. John Strycker shared. “Not to mention that music simply makes for a higher quality of life. I am very proud of our music program, staff and students.”

Next, Strycker gave his general report, along with the proposal for the Alternative School Program.

“Considering the expressed concern to have an alternative school program for our school system, I am recommending a program for next year utilizing existing staff and facilities at no additional cost to our budget,” Strycker said.

Proposing an alternative school program without adding to the District’s budget by utilizing more efficient scheduling of the coaching staff at Greenville High School, Strycker plans to save on school system costs such as the facility, personnel and resources.

Along with the new proposal, Strycker presented the State Report Card from 2016-17. Earlier this year, the District received a “D.”

“There is no question in my mind that we are better than that of our last Report Card,” Strycker said as he reviewed data. “Each day, I see first-hand our talented students and staff working hard to produce good results. However, I feel we can do better – much better.”

In closing, Strycker emphasized the need for change and improvement in the Butler County school system moving forward.

In the Curriculum and Instruction Update, Lisa Adair reported on the positive college and career opportunities being offered to the students in the upcoming year.

“We had 27 students that attended the GUA/UAB Mini Camp on May 16-17, 2018,” she said. “This experience allowed them to attend different college courses and/or participate in community service projects that they developed. They also learned about admission requirements as well as the wide variety of degree programs available. It was truly a mini-college experience.”

Adair also shared about the dual enrollment opportunities offered with Lurleen B. Wallace Community College. In the upcoming year, more students will be encouraged to take advantage of this curriculum offered.

Assistant Superintendent Joseph Eiland also gave an account regarding the special education services offered in the school system.

“As is the case in several areas within our school district, special education services teachers in collaboration with general education teachers and outside agencies must step up to the plate to improve outcomes for our students with disabilities,” Eiland said.

Reporting an estimated documented state report with five students testing proficient in reading and 10 in math, according to the data from last year, Eiland expressed his concerns for the school system and the county.

“As a team of educators, we will address this trending concern with urgency,” Eiland said. “We will steadfastly work to close the achievement gap between our students with disabilities and their non-disabled peers.”