Schools Superintendent Touts Classroom Successes
Schools Superintendent Aaron Spence had plenty to boast about at Monday’s meeting of the Moore County Board of Education, the first time a board meeting was presented on the Internet live.
Relaying the statistics assembled from the 2012 ABCs end-of-grade tests, Spence said he was “looking forward to a great school year” based on the assembled information.
“In 2012, we had four schools designated as Honor Schools of Excellence, the highest category possible in the designations based on a school’s performance in the state’s ABCs tests,” he said. “Ten Moore County schools met 100 percent of their Annual Measurable Objectives, 15 of 20 schools met ‘Expected Growth,’ and of those 15, seven schools made ‘High Growth.’ In addition, Pinecrest High and Union Pines High schools made significant improvement in their performance.”
Spence said that county schools exceeded SAT scores on both the state and national levels.
“This past year’s scores are not yet available, but in the spring 2011 results, Moore County students achieved an average score of 1,048 compared with the state average of 1,008 and the national average at 1,017.”
Spence also announced that county graduation rates came in at 83 percent, higher than the state average.
“These are great graduation statistics, and we’re always striving for 100 percent, but let me put this in perspective,” he said.
For comparison, Spence related nationwide graduation percentages from previous years.
“In the year 1940, the United States saw a graduation percentage of 24.5, with 55 percent in 1970,” he said. “Also in 1940, 4.6 percent of all students went on to college. That number grew to 11 percent in 1970, and in the year 2010, 27.9 percent were college bound.
“Everyone associated with Moore County Schools is doing a tremendous job.”
With board chairwoman Kathy Farren on vacation but present via conference call, the board passed a proposal to record and archive future meetings as a supplement to live streaming.
“We want to have an audio/video record so that there won’t ever be a case of ‘he said vs. she said,’” said board member Ed Dennison. “I thought this was a subject we should discuss.”
Board member Laura Lang agreed.
“I think it’s a great idea, a good way for the board to be transparent to the public,” Lang said.
The proposal to continue recording and storing meetings passed unanimously.
Also at Monday’s meeting, the school system’s chief financial officer, Mike Griffin, told board members the system is in “great shape” for the 2013-2014 budget process.
According to a quarterly financial update reviewing the current budget, the system has state funding of $64.2 million, which is approximately $50,000 higher than the 2011-2012 budget.
“Additional funding of about $1.2 million is expected for (the categories of) transportation and exceptional children,” Griffin said.
Local current funding is $26.3 million, no change from the 2011-2012 year, while federal funding totals $12.1 million.
Contact John Lentz at (910) 693-2479 or jlentz@the pilot.com.
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