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Hawkins students' summer break to start two days early

May 2nd, 2012 10:44 pm by Jeff Bobo

ROGERSVILLE — Hawkins County students will start summer vacation two days early to give teachers extra time to focus on new “Common Core” standards and teacher evaluations.


Last month, Director of Schools Charlotte Britton requested permission from the Tennessee education commissioner to use two stockpiled snow days for teacher professional development days.


That approval was granted from the state, and on Tuesday the Hawkins County Board of Education agreed to convert Tuesday, May 22, and Wednesday, May 23, from regular school days into staff development days.


Thursday, May 17, will be the last full day of school for students.


There is no school for students on Friday, May 18, which was already scheduled for in-service at individual schools.


The last day of school for students will be Monday, May 21, which will be an abbreviated day.


High school graduation will be Saturday, May 26.


Hawkins County Schools had stockpiled 13 extra “snow days” beyond the minimum required 180-day school year by extending the school day length by 30 minutes. This year, only two snow days were used.


In other business Tuesday the BOE:


•Heard a report from Food Services Director Mandy Kenner that a 10 cent school lunch price increase will be required soon to avoid operating in the red. The need for the increase is being blamed on food price increases, particularly in fruits and vegetables, which will become more prominent on school lunch menus due to new federal nutrition regulations.


Kenner said the U.S. Department of Agriculture indicated the 10 cent increase would be needed to keep the program at break-even level financially and remain in compliance for annual audits. The BOE will consider a couple of options for spreading that price increase out over two or three pricing tiers but must make a decision before the school year begins in August.


•Honored graduating student school board members Dalton Cradic from Volunteer High School, Frank Byrd from Cherokee High School and Tori Bloomer from Clinch School. The 2011-12 school year was the first for a pilot program sponsored by board member Debbie Shedden in which one senior from each of the three high schools was chosen to represent students as non-voting members of the BOE throughout the school year.


•Heard a report from BOE Chairman Randy Collier that beginning with the June 5 school board meeting, the practice of holding a 6 p.m. workshop prior to the 7 p.m. regular school board meeting will be stopped. Beginning on June 5, there will be no regular monthly workshop.


Collier said the school board meetings will begin at 6 p.m., with discussion that usually took place during the workshop now to take place during the regular meeting, followed by a BOE vote.

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