By Charles Grove
The Georgetown Exempted Village School Board met on Wednesday, June 17, and discussed a number of topics including Family, Career and Community Leaders classes, test scores and free lunches.
A standing-room-only crowd in the meeting room was there to show their support of FCCLA classes, which according to supporters of the class, are being phased out of Georgetown schools within the next four years.
However, beginning this August, FCCLA classes can be taken at Georgetown High School for college credit. Despite that, numbers are down in the program. But Charlotte Gifford, a mother of a 2014 graduate of Georgetown, said the school doesn’t make it easy for students to take multiple college-credit courses.
“They’re making it really difficult to fit FCCLA into the curriculum,” Gifford said. “The FCCLA classes are only offered at the same time at the college-credit courses for math and English.
Board member Ralph Sininger said the board tabled the future of the program to discuss it further.
“The parents were concerned we were not going to look into it,” Sininger said. “But we don’t want to lose that program. Those kids worked hard to get where they are. [Superintendent Burrows] has five to six ways he may want to go with it.”
Sininger also said the board has had trouble finding someone to teach the course, but Gifford isn’t completely buying it.
“[The board] didn’t think they could find someone who has qualifications,” Gifford said. “But they’re not going to find someone perfectly qualified. It has to be something someone would have to work for.”
Gifford said she “doesn’t even want to think about” what the consequences to dropping FCCLA classes would be for future students.
“This class teaches kids how to balance a check book, make dinner, create a menu and take care of a baby,” Gifford said. “Some kids don’t have parents at home all the time to teach them these things. Not every kid is in sports or in FFA because some kids are just meant to be in these classes.”
The board also discussed their Ohio Graduation Test scores for this past school year and the results were uplifting for the board.
“Our test scores went up tremendously,” Burrows said. “Last year our scores were fourth and fifth in the county but this year we’re second in every category of the OGT except for one where we were fourth.”
Georgetown had the highest percentage of students of any district in Brown County who passed all five areas of the Ohio Graduation Test.
“I was very pleased with all the hard work, changes, structure and just raising the bar on expectations because it really paid off,” Burrows said.
Also, Burrows plans to be able to offer free breakfast for all students this upcoming school year.
“Our goal next year is for universal free breakfast regardless of socioeconomic status,” Burrows said. “So any child that comes to us will have the opportunity to eat.”
The next regularly scheduled board meeting is 6 p.m. Thursday, July 16, at the Administrative Office, located 1043 Mt. Orab Pike, in Georgetown.