County school system ditching block scheduling

Published 7:44 pm Monday, March 23, 2015

Chilton County schools will have more flexibility with class scheduling in the next school year.

The Chilton County Board of Education at a meeting on March 17 approved Superintendent Tommy Glasscock’s recommendation for the school system to “come off blocks.”

Block scheduling features longer and fewer classes per day than the traditional period system.

Chilton County’s block system, which has been in place since 1996, includes a “flex” block that is reserved for remediation, study hall or other academic activities.

In making his recommendation, Glasscock said schools would not be forced to switch to a seven-period schedule but that he would work with principals to determine the best approach for individual schools, based on current situations and the approaches taken by other school systems.

The board’s standing policy about blocks makes scheduling inflexible, Glasscock said.

“It just kind of ties our hands,” Glasscock said.

The superintendent pointed out that periods can be combined to form a block, if so desired by administrators, but a block cannot be split into periods because of the board’s current policy.

Board members Pam Price and Curtis Smith voiced concerns about how the change would affect students who transfer, if schools use different scheduling approaches, and students at the LeCroy Career Tech Center.

Glasscock said he would address the concerns as well as any other potential problems.

The board voted 6-1 in favor of removing the policy about block scheduling, with board member Keith Moore opposed.

Former Superintendent Dave Hayden requested the same measure in February 2013, but the recommendation was voted down.

In other business, the board:

•Approved the February financial statements and bank reconciliations of the central office as presented by Chief Financial Officer Steve Yeargan.

•Approved the February 2015 payrolls and accounts payable.

•Approved the minutes of the Feb. 17 meeting.

•Approved to grant permission for the technology coordinator to request bids on computer maintenance for the district.

•Approved Child Nutrition Program requests.

•Approved subscribing to the Alabama Association of School’s Board’s “Policy Pipeline” at a cost of $850 per year.

•Approved school/shop requests.

•Approved homebound requests for two students.

•Approved placing four students in the Chilton Alternative Program.

•Approved a supplement of $1,761 for the lead school nurse.

•Approved having kindergarten registration on April 20-24.

•Approved the nonrenewal list for emergency hires.

•Approved to post vacancies as needed.

•Approved to bid out paint services as needed.

•Approved allowing students to attend a career fair at Ft. Ivan Smith in Clanton on April 15.

•Allowed Maplesville to enter a contract with Xerox.

•Approved a three-day unpaid suspension for bus driver Raymond Davidson for failing to report an incident to a supervisor.

•Approved Herman Washington and Jay Hurd as volunteer tennis coaches at Chilton County High School.

•Approved Central Dance using the CCHS auditorium for a Relay For Life fundraiser.

•Approved to purchase an additional fleet vehicle for the transportation department.

•Approved spending $5,750 to purchase payroll software.