On Thursday, Nov. 11, the Bryan County Board of Education held their monthly regular board meeting at Bryan County High School in Pembroke.
The meeting kicked off with a welcome by BCHS Principal Harold Roach and a screening of the Redskins "Good News at BCHS" video montage. The short film was created by BCHS students and narrated by seniors Howard Amelsberg, Ashley Barfield and Lindsay Seger. It showed board members the ins and outs of school life at the high school.
Next on the agenda, Bryan County Elementary School Principal Debbie Laing and art teacher Amanda Miles presented students Cassie Mock and Jakayla Davis with certificates and congratulated them for having their works art on display at Georgia Southern’s Art Extravaganza.
"I drew my Picasso picture," said Mock. "You can go and see it any time you want at the GSU Gallery." The girls’ artwork was chosen out of thousands of entries across the country and will be on display until next October.
BCES students’ artwork was not the only reason to celebrate their school during the meeting. Superintendent Dr. Sallie Brewer also congratulated the administration and staff for winning the 2007 Silver Single Statewide Accountability System (SSAS) award.
"BCES is one of 13 schools statewide to receive this award for the 2006-2007 school year," said Laing. "It’s icing on the cake for our staff. Our leadership team has worked diligently."
In order to win the SSAS competition for a silver award in the greatest gains category, schools must meet three criteria. First, they must make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) for two consecutive years. Second they must demonstrate that at least 25 percent of students exceed standards in all test areas as measured by the state assessments; and also place in the 96th percentile or higher statewide in the greatest student achievement gains.
During the public comment period of the meeting, Richmond Hill's Michelle Adams raised concerns about a recent survey given to parents of Bryan County students.
"Last year I, among several other people gave feedback concerning the survey through phone calls and emails to the school board members, letters to the editor, and speaking before the school board," said Adams.
Adams, a parent, said the survey was not scientific and could not support results claimed by school officials.
"Frankly, I was disappointed when I got in the mail last week a survey done in the exact same manner as last year," she said.
Adams said Armstrong Atlantic Director of Public Institutional Research Andy Clark validated her point that the survey was not an accurate method to gather facts and weigh opinions.
Adams asked the BoE to rethink the current surveying process.