Cloverdale School Board

October 26, 2003

By BRANDY RICHMOND Banner-Graphic Staff Writer

CLOVERDALE — Rather than paring down the valedictory pool, weighted grades may actually beef up the competition, the Cloverdale School Board learned at its June meeting. 

Cloverdale High School Principal Patrick Bauer addressed board president Scott Barrier and members Joetta Milligan, Barbara Petro, John Whitaker and James Sharp regarding weighted grades for Advanced Placement (AP) classes at CHS.

By definition, Bauer told the board, AP classes are college courses, and teachers strive to teach them at that level. AP course offerings, which include history, biology and English, are considerably more time consuming and rigorous for students. They must be able to handle an estimated 200 hours above and beyond what would be required in a regular course, Bauer reported. “The load on the student is extreme,” he said.

There has been a certain degree of reluctance to enroll in AP classes because of the impact the more challenging coursework can have on a student’s grade point average, Bauer added. Earning higher grades is more difficult, and those in the valedictory running may be reluctant to tackle tougher standards for fear of jeopardizing their academic ranking.

Although speaking with faculty generated some feedback, the high school principal said he also sought the advice and opinions of those involved in the Indiana Association of School Principals. A number of principals indicated enrollment in AP courses increased when grades were weighted.

In a memo to Supt. Steve Wittenauer, Bauer recommends that for any AP course offering, students who score a C- or greater receive an additional two-thirds of a point. ” Let’s go ahead and risk it and try something exemplary,” Bauer told the board. 

Wittenauer clarified that the matter would merely be discussed at the evening’s meeting, but could be put into policy format if desired by board members.  Whitaker encouraged Wittenauer and Bauer to do so, while Barrier remarked that although he is not opposed on the surface to weighting grades at the high school, he anticipates hearing from the public regarding additional facets of the issue.

In other business, the board:

* Approved claims and financial reports, and noted that the twice yearly middle school payment of $47,250 as well as the purchase of a mini-bus appear on this month’s claims docket. Board members also learned that the corporation did not get its payment from the state and will also have to borrow funds at the end of the year for next year. Approved Policy 4080 regarding support staff vacations and holidays and reviewed Policy 5050 regarding admission/retention of non-resident students.

* Learned that the high school has been accredited by the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement. In a letter to CHS principal Patrick Bauer, Indiana NCA CASI Director Greg Ulm wrote, “During the review of the school’s report and supplementary information, no violations of standards were noted. The school is to be commended for its efforts in providing a quality program of education for its students.”

* Heard a renovation update from Bill Terrell regarding energy savings work. At the high school, 95 percent of lighting and ballast work has been completed, while 50 percent of work at the elementary school is finished. There has been a two-thirds savings in kilowatt hours in light at the elementary school, and Terrell said, “It should be a lot better than we even anticipated on paper.”

* Noted there will be an attendance policy meeting at 7 p.m. on June 13 at the corporation office. Wittenauer commented that attendance at both the elementary and middle school has improved.

* Approved field trip and facility use requests.

* Approved the committee recommendation regarding a request for early admittance to kindergarten.

* Granted permission to advertise bread and dairy bids as well as the annual financial report.

* Approved the elementary school handbook with corrections.

* Approved the non-renewal of Channel One at the high school.

* Noted summer school will begin July 29.

Approved personnel items, including:

* Resignations of Traci Toney as varsity volleyball coach, Brad Sandy for drama club and Cathy McQuitty as seventh-grade volleyball coach.

* Professional leave for Chad Nunley and retirement for Donna Dunagan.

* Area 30 Career Center employment for Stephanie Shepherd, Jacquelyn Utter and Tabitha Thompson as childcare assistants; Sarah Lowe and Ashley Archer as program assistants ABE/GED; and Anthony Brown for summer maintenance.

* Employment of Roberta Kyle as seventh-grade volleyball coach, Tim Savini as eighth-grade volleyball coach, Greg Crum and Doug Wokoun as seventh-and eighth-grade football coaches, Scott Porter as middle school boys’ track coach, Susan Jordan as middle school girls’ track coach, Sonny Stoltz as varsity baseball coach, Sam Brown as assistant baseball coach, Greg Crum as varsity girls’ softball coach, Jodie Sanders as assistant girls’ softball coach, Elizabeth Fackelman as head track coach, Kristin Crabtree as assistant varsity track coach, Roberta Kyle as assistant varsity track coach, Jackie Secrest as middle school library assistant and John Sites and Matt Nees for computer maintenance.  The Cloverdale School Board regularly meets the second Monday of the month at 7 p.m. at the corporation office. Meetings are open to the public.

Thanks to Ken McNatt

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