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District working to make 2021 better

By Amber Hobaugh

Staff Writer


The Adair County Board of Education met on Monday night for a special called meeting after last week’s meeting had to be canceled due to inclement weather.

Board members voted to approve the proposed 2021-2022 school calendar hopeful that schools will be able to start next school year fully in-person.

During the Superintendent’s report, Superintendent Pamela Stephens noted the accomplishments of the Adair County Elementary, Middle and High School’s Academic Teams for their recent accolades during regional competitions.

Stephens went on to mention Freshman Ellie Cheatham’s accomplishment of being named’s Girls High School Player of the Week for the first week of February.

She continued by thanking Cumberland Family Medical Center for their part in administering the COVID-19 vaccine to around 200 Adair County School District employees. The second round of vaccines were completed last week, something that Stephens said was on the path to allowing education to become normal again.

Superintendent Stephens also noted that administrators and educators are in the process of a plan that would allow for a “pepped up” version of summer school.

“The goal of this program will be to transition kids, hopefully, back to in-person learning in the fall,” Stephens said.

She went on to say that not only would the program help students get back into the routine of being in classrooms but it would also hopefully get students who may have fallen behind during the pandemic back up to grade level.

“We hope to not only have instruction going on but some fun activities for the kids as well. They’ve definitely earned it.”

Maintenance and Transportation Director Steve Burton also spoke at the meeting to give the board an update on the addition to the Adair County Primary Center as well as the projects that are happening on the Baseball and Softball fields.

Burton said that although the weather has slowed down the projects quite a bit lately, Jenkins-Essex Construction is committed to their goal of having those projects completed in the time frame given. He went on to say that crews have started working weekends in order to have those projects completed on time.

Principals from each school also presented their gap reports to board members during the meeting. With all schools going to non-traditional instruction at the end of the 19-20 school year and the 20-21 school year starting off solely virtual, the numbers for these reports look a little concerning but also encouraging as there are not significant enough gaps to cause concern for educators at this time.

Adair County Primary Center’s principal Debbie Bradshaw was the most concerned as she said that her students are the ones that need the most assistance, especially in a virtual learning world.

“Students at this age have to be engaged in what is going on, just because they have the screen open doesn’t mean that they are learning or engaged. So it has been our goal to try and get whole families involved in the learning process for these students,” Bradshaw said.

The administrators also went on to talk about programs that they are using to help students learn virtually and meet their benchmarks such as i-Ready, Odysseyware, and Reading plus.

“We are focusing on ALL of our students and not just a targeted group because they’ve all lost something during this pandemic,” Rodney Morgeson


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