By Reann Huber
As the school year is coming to a close there were several special recognitions to be announced at this month’s Board of Education meeting including this year’s Morgan County High valedictorian and salutatorian.
MCHS Principal, Jim Malanowski, presented to the board this year’s valedictorian, Dana Hicky, and salutatorian, Elizabeth Cagle, and stressed how proud he was of these two students and what they have accomplished thus far and will continue to accomplish in college.
Malanowski also announced Cagle as being this year’s STAR Student as she has the highest SAT score in one sitting, and Cagle chose Josh Reeves to be STAR Teacher for the second year in a row.
Last recognition among students was for the Air Force JROTC at MCHS, who were inspected by the Air Force this year and exceeded many of their standards leading to them being awarded with the Distinguished Unit Award with Merit. This has been the first time since the cadet corps was founded in 1994 that they received this award and is only awarded to the top 10 percent of cadet crops in the world.
Other recognitions went to Mike Conrad and Pete Caulk for doing outstanding work through the mentor program in Morgan County, as well as to Pam Benford for being named Georgia’s School Social Worker of the Year.
The rest of this month’s meeting focused on how Morgan County schools can grow, especially through technology.
A three to five-year plan was created to map out instructional technology within the schools. By the end of the five years, which is subject to change, they would like to have a blending learning type classroom in all schools to have some sort of virtual classroom running along with the traditional classroom, as well as have an actual online academy offering classes at the high school level.
“It’s time to kind of make that first step in changing the traditional model of a classroom,” Tiffany Markley said to the board. “We’ve seen teachers, all the way from a year away from retiring, that have gone from the traditional ‘here’s a worksheet, do this,’ to 100 percent paperless.”
As for the facility projects that are continuously being planned out, design development and construction documentation will begin in the summer and continue into 2017 for the 6-12 campus, and there are still a couple of studies and surveys being done for the transportation facility over the next month. Superintendent, James Woodard, said the architects and engineers for this project will be meeting soon to discuss the start of construction documents for permitting.