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Lanesville schools selected by NRCRES for study

Lanesville Junior-Senior High School has been randomly selected to participate in a study conducted by the National Research Center on Rural Education Support, through funding provided by the U.S. Dept. of Education.
The Supporting Distance Learning in Small Rural School Districts study will give Lanesville High School an Advanced Placement English composition and literature distance learning course to be offered via the Internet to students, an opportunity that the school has needed for some time.
‘The timing of the opportunity was pretty incredible,’ said Janet Page, principal of Lanesville Junior-Senior High School. ‘We’ve talked all year about how to get additional AP courses for (our) students, and specifically the English class. We’ve gone so far as to offer the AP training to all our teachers, and even had one of them, Michelle Scarber, looking for possible dates this summer for her to attend training.’
Currently, LJSHS offers five AP classes: Spanish, French, calculus, chemistry and art history. However, Page said they hadn’t been able to offer English because teachers were unavailable.
‘All our English teachers have full schedules, and we didn’t have an ‘open’ period for the class to be offered,’ Page said.
The National Research Center on Rural Education Support, located at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, requires at least four, but no more than 10, students enroll in the AP English course. Each student enrolled in the $600 course will receive $200 worth of textbooks and novels required for the course, and Lanesville will be reimbursed for the students’ AP exams fees at the end of the class. All funding is provided by the U.S. Dept. of Education, along with the NRCRES.
Because scheduling had been a problem previously, this study fits Lanesville very well because the class, taught online by an AP certified and licensed instructor, needs to only have an on-site facilitator. That person will receive special training but doesn’t have to specifically be an English teacher.
‘All around the country schools will ‘log on’ with a facilitator present in the high schools who are participating in the course,’ Page said. ‘UNC prefers the facilitator have a bachelor’s degree, but the coordinator said they would work with us on that.’
The classes will be 50 minutes, five days a week and will last one year, but Page said the details of where the classes will meet and when have yet to be determined.
‘But the opportunity far outweighs the hurdles we have to get over,’ she said.
In other school matters:
‘ The Lanesville Community School Corp. board heard a report Feb. 18 from Gordon Ingle, attorney for the Lanesville School Holding Corp., concerning the $1.25 million loan of riverboat money the school corporation was given by Harrison County government in 2004. The loan, which is being paid off incrementally each year from withheld riverboat money distribution to the Lanesville schools, is scheduled to be repaid, in full, in 2016. There had been some discussion of possible forgiveness of the annual pay-back loan, and Ingle presented the history of the loan to the board. No action was taken.
‘ The school board approved the 2008-09 school calendar. Following an extended school year format, the first day back for students is July 28, and the last day before summer vacation will be June 4.
‘ Sam Gardner, interim superintendent, reported to the school board that Sandy Denny, Lanesville’s food service director, conducted an inventory of food supplies and found they had not received any recalled meat.
‘ The following personnel issues were approved: Two bus driver contracts; the resignation of Daniel Haas, technology assistant; recommendation of Gail Williams to full-time custodian position; recommendation of Cindy Lipke to math lab coordinator position; recommendation of Bill Krammes as varsity softball coach; recommendation of Rusty Cecil as assistant softball coach; recommendation of Debbie Clark as junior high girls tennis coach; and contract revisions for Lanesville Elementary School Principal Marsha Himmelhaver.