STANFORD — One of the ways Lincoln County Board of Education plans to revitalize education at Lincoln County High School is by joining a non-profit organization designed to enroll more students in Advanced Placement classes, the board unanimously voted Thursday.
AdvanceKentucky is a four-year-old initiative in the state and works closely with schools to not only increase student enrollment in AP classes, but help them get passing scores on the tests, according to a presentation by Lincoln County Director of Academics Pam Hart.
“We felt this was a prime year to move,” said Hart. “We really want to get as many kids enrolled as possible.”
AdvanceKentucky and its corporate partners such as Kentucky Downs and Lockheed Martin fund most of the program, though Lincoln County must contribute some funds toward supplies, equipment and staff training. The school system expects to spend about $8,800 from its general fund in 2012-13 on the program, and the high school will contribute $2,500.
Lincoln County High School was ranked by the state as persistently low-achieving earlier this year, and the AdvanceKentucky program would be considered part of the required intervention in the school’s education program, said Superintendent Karen Hatter.
Students and teachers would receive cash incentives of as much as $100 depending on test performance. Also, no student would be prohibited from enrolling in AP classes.
“We have to have drastic, rapid change,” Hatter said.
Board of Education members unanimously voted to amend the 2012-13 academic calendar in order to meet AdvanceKentucky requirements for students to be available for AP testing. Classes will now start Aug. 8 and end May 17.
The high school also should be eligible for state grants to defray expenses such as AdvanceKentucky enrollment as well as hiring a math consultant, a language consultant and a principal’s coach, Hatter noted. However, the amount of funds available to Lincoln County has not been determined. While state officials pointed out issues with the school as well as Hatter’s leadership, they are allowing Hatter as well as high school Principal Tim Godbey to continue in their positions. Both Hatter and Godbey must work closely with state officials in what Hatter called a “friendly takeover.”
“They’re allowing us to make decisions with their guidance,” said Hatter.
Board of Education members plan to have a working session soon where they will discuss the state’s assessment and work to address any deficiencies alleged regarding the school board, said board Chairman Jim Kelley.
“Nobody in this district likes this situation, and we’re going to do something about it,” said board member Tim Jackson.