Superintendent Carter advances new classroom designs School board salutes GCH Girls Basketball Team as Class 3A Area 7 Champions

Greene County High Lady Tigers displaying their Class 3A banner, Shown Above: Graduating seniors of the GCHS Lady Tigers Basketball Team: Te’Aira Wilson, Kelsey Spencer, Raven Vanable and Sabrina French.

At the Greene County School Board meeting held Monday, March 27, 2017, Superintendent James Carter and board members gave a special salute to the Greene County High Lady Tigers basketball team as Class 3A Area 7 Champions, 2016-2017. Dr. Carter presented the Lady Tigers, along with their coach, Kendra Payne and Principal Garry Rice, with a banner designating their championship.

Superintendent James Carter, in his continued efforts to improve school curricula and culture, presented the board with additional innovative considerations. Dr. Carter explained that the design of the classroom is important to the learning process. “Students’ desks, textbooks, and other barriers between teacher and students should be removed.
Teachers need and should have the flexibility to be more innovative and creative in the classroom. There is a need to reinvent the classroom to fit the 21st century learners,” he stated.
According to Superintendent Carter, the first thing that should be done is to get parents more involved in their children’s education; next Second identify teachers and principals who care about children and make students feel like they belong in the school. Third thing is that every child should feel a sense of accomplishment. He further noted that the three major institutions that once supported our children and now are failing our children. These institutions, home, church and school, must take the lead in helping educators turn around schools.
Dr. Carter also raised the question: “How can corporal punishment have a place in schools?” He noted that research shows that Black students and students with disabilities receive physical punishment more than other students. He suggests that the system reviews its policies regarding corporal punishment in schools.
Carter also noted that the school system is in the process of establishing collaboration with Greene County Hospital to implement a candy striper program as well as a Nursing Assistant Program with students enrolled at Greene County Career Center.
The superintendent ended his report with the announcement of a sale of surplus equipment at the former Paramount school on April 11 and; at former Carver school on April 12 from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.
In other business, the board approved the following personnel items as presented by the superintendent.
* Employment: Micheal Bolton as Bus Driver for the system.
* Leave of Absence without pay for LaJoycelyn Davis, Secretary at Robert Brown Middle School.
Additional Service contract(s) for the following employees at Greene County High School for the 2016 – 2017 academic year. (Separate Contract): Jacob Sullivan – Asst. Baseball Coach. The Board approved the following administrative services items:
Bid submitted by Dallas Air Conditioning and Heating, Inc. in the amount of $82,950 to rework controls at Robert Brown Middle School (Only Bidder).
Field Trip Requests: Robert Brown Middle – Math and Science Day at Six Flags Over Ga on May 12, 2017; Robert Brown Middle – Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, GA on May 4, 2017.
Payment of all bills, claims, and payroll.
The board approved the following Instructional Items:
* Revamping of Kindergarten Program to include project learning type of concept with a focus on communication, critical thinking skills, foreign language, and math problem solving activities
* Organize Summer School for promotion of students who are struggling or identified as at-risk
* Teachers and Principals to develop a reading list for students to enhance their reading skills over the summer months

Local board honored for School Board Appreciation Month – Superintendent questions state’s designation of failing schools in Greene County

During his report at the regular meeting of the Greene County Board of Education, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017, Superintendent James Carter stated that Robert Brown Middle School and Greene County High School have been designated by the State Department of Education as failing schools based on tests scores from 2015-2016. “It has been determined that Greene County School System has two schools that fall within the bottom 6% of schools in Alabama. Any schools within this range are placed on the failing schools list as referenced in the Alabama Accountability Act of 2013, revised in 2015,” Dr, Carter said.
Dr. Carter further explained that the state tests, the ACT Aspire in Reading and Math, were administered in the Spring of 2016 to grades 3-8 and grade 10. “We are not making excuses when we say that this was the first time these particular tests were administered to the schools.” He also noted that the tests results attributed to Robert Brown Middle School were from the former Carver Middle School and do not include students test results from the former Paramount School. Robert Brown Middle School began operations as a consolidated school from Carver and Paramount in August of 2016.
“I am concerned that Robert Brown Middle School is called a failing school when Robert Brown Middle School did not exist when these tests were given,” Carter said. He also noted that Greene County High School was not on the failing list in the previous year. “ This is somewhat perplexing for them to be placed back on the failing list after being off the list last year,” he added.

“The Alabama Accountability Act is just another scheme for tax credits and vouchers to be given to students’ parents who choose for their children to have a private school education,” Carter stated.
According to state reports, the Alabama Accountability Act helps students move from public to private schools with scholarships funded by tax credits. Approximately 70% of the nearly 6,000 scholarships went to children who would not otherwise attend a failing school.
Superintendent Carter also announced that the Robert Brown family has made a generous donation of $5,100 to the recently dedicated Robert Brown Middle School. Carter extended a deep appreciation to the family on behalf of the entire school system.
In recognition of School Board Appreciation Month, the board received special recognition and salutes from the schools and Central Office Personnel. Eutaw Primary students presented a creative dance as well as other treats. Robert Brown Middle School students serenaded the board and presented other treats. The Child Nutrition Program personnel gave the board members fruit baskets. Parent Involvement Coordinator presented a special Certificate of Appreciation to each board member. Greene County High School announced that it will make special presentations to the board at its Honors Program scheduled for January 31.
The board approved the following personnel items recommended by the superintendent.
Employment of Mrs. Sondra Terry as part-time Science Teacher at Greene County Career Center; employment of Tren’D’Mis Davis as Bus Driver and adding Ms. Tanesha Lyons to the current CNP Substitute list for 2017-2018 year.
The Administrative Services approved by the board included the following:
* Expand wireless opportunities for schools following additional review.
* Accept proposals for sale/lease of properties at former Paramount Jr. High and Carver Middle School.
* Approve lease agreement with Norfolk Southern Corporation for use of Paramount parking lot for a limited period of time, pending legal review and approval by board’s attorney.
* Payment of all bills, claims, and payroll.
Bank reconciliations as submitted by CSFO.
The following items were also presented at the meeting by Superintendent Carter:
* Advertisement for sale or lease of properties at Paramount Jr. High and Carver Middle School.
* Sale dates for surplus equipment at Carver and Paramount.
* Restrooms at Robert Brown Middle School have been refurbished and the hallways painted.
* Review of curriculum/instruction of Greene County schools.
* Develop program to recognize outstanding students and employees.
* Review each school’s master schedule to determine if maximum learning opportunities are provided to each student.
* Develop system for scheduling maintenance /work orders in timely fashion.
* Tutorial lab for primary grades and grades four and five.
* Seek foreign language instructors for primary and middle school grades.

School board members sworn into office; schools accreditation affirmed


L to R: Mrs. Janette Cockrell holds Bible as her daughter Kashaya Cockrell is sworn-in; John Zippert holds Bible for his wife Dr. Carol Zippert as Judge Lillie Jones Osborne administers the Oath .


Shown L to R displaying Schools Accreditation Plaque: Superintendent James Carter,Sr., School Boardmembers Carrie Dancy, Kashaya Cockrell, Leo Branch, Carol Zippert, William Morgan, Principals Sharon Jennings and Frederick Square.


Ms. Kashaya Cockrell, representing School Board District 2, and Dr. Carol P. Zippert, representing District 1, were sworn into office at the Board of Education meeting held, Monday, November 28, 2016. Greene County District Judge Lillie Jones Osborne conducted the ceremony. Cockrell and Zippert were elected to six year terms each following the November 8, 2016 general election. Zippert served on the school board for the past two years completing the term vacated by Lester Brown when he was elected to the Greene County Commission in 2014, representing District 1.

Superintendent James H. Carter, Sr. presented the board with a plaque affirming the accreditation of the Greene County School System by the AdvanceEd Accreditation Commission. Following an intensive examination of the school system’s total operations in April, 2016, the AdvanceEd External Review Team recommended Greene County Schools for accreditation.
In other business the school board approved the following personnel items.
Employment of Tweela Jordan as Part-time Teacher-Aide at Greene County Career Center; Ivory Robinson as Elementary Teacher at Robert Brown Middle School; Eddie Coats as Bus Driver for the system; Wennoa Peebles as Bus Driver for the system; Adding TreDemis Davis to the current Bus Driver Substitute List 2016-2017. November 14, 2016 approved as the last working day for Ms. Brenda Grant (Retirement was approved October 17, 2016).
The board approved the following administrative services recommended by Superintendent Carter.
* Acceptance of bids for a wrought iron fence, brick column, and gate for Greene County High School when funds are available.
* Permission to research cost of building an athletic field house on Greene County High School campus (Rationale: To be able to utilize the practice field).
* Agreement between Greene County Board of Education and Integra Realty Resources – Birmingham for Valuation and Consulting Services for the former Paramount Jr. High School and Carver Middle School properties.
* Contract with West Central Official Association of Livingston, Alabama for basketball officials during the 2016 -2017 school term.
* Contract with Criterion Consulting LLC for Formative Administrator Evaluation Support Services for 2016 – 2017 school year.
* Permission for Dr. James Carter, Superintendent, to attend the National Superintendent Conference in New Orleans, LA on March 2 – 4, 2017.
* Surplus old athletic uniforms for Paramount Jr. High and Carver Middle School or allow coaches to decide how to use them.
* Request to install a security fence at football stadium at Robert Brown Middle School Stadium
* Surplus and sale inventory at Paramount Jr. High and Carver Middle School.
Field trip Request for students and teachers at Greene County High to attend Education Day at Carowinds in Charlotte, NC on April 21, 2017.
Field Trip Request for Robert Brown Middle School’s 4 – 6 grade to participate in the Disney YES (Youth Educational Series) Program in Orlando, FL on May 7, 2017.
Field Trip Request for Drama Class to travel to New York City during Spring Break.
Field Trip Request for students and teachers at Robert Brown Middle School to travel to Atlanta, Ga to visit a Civil Rights Museum and have a College Tour on April 25, 2017.
Field Trip Request for students and teachers at Robert Brown Middle School to visit Ruby Falls and Rock City in Chattanooga, TN on April 21, 2017.
Out of School Violent Criminal Conduct Policy.
Black History In the School Curriculum Policy.
Resolution to remove authorized signers, Shane Martin and Emma Louie and add Leon Dowe and James Carter as authorized signers at Bank of Tuscaloosa.
Closing Carver Middle School’s account at Merchants and Farmers Bank.
Bid submitted by ADS Security in the amount of $19, 980.00 for Camera System at Robert Brown Middle School when funds are available.
Payment of all bills, claims, and payroll.
Bank reconciliations as submitted by Mr. Leon Dowe, CSFO.
In his report, Dr. Carter noted the following:
* Attended the World of Work Conference at Shelton State.
* Participated in the Red Ribbon Week Activities.
* Participated in the Breast Cancer Awareness Program.
* Attended and Toured Mercedes Automobile Plant.
* Performed structured interviews with Principals to enhance student achievement
* Reviewed test data with staff. This should help us better plan our instructional goal of 5% increase on the ACT Aspire.
* Ordered 40 jackets to help parents of students who were unable to pay for jackets at the time the uniform dress code for the 9th grade academy was established.
* Participated in the homecoming parade and several school coronations
* Attended and participated in the Induction Ceremony at Greene County High School Mu Alpha Theta honor society and Rho Beta history honor society
Attended West Alabama Works – a Workforce Development Council meeting hosted by Mercedes Benz.
Inquire about a partnership with city and county government to build or to organize a technology center.
“In order for the Greene County School System to continue improving, teachers must develop measurable goals for all students. It is my opinion that this system needs refining, better data and better assessments instruments. We must get empowerment right starting with teachers, parents, school community and above all, the students. Our leadership must find a vision that yield positive results.
“The leadership in our schools and classrooms must perform a self assessment and ask the tough question. Do I want a world class school and district or am I satisfied with the status quo.
Robert Brown Dedication Ceremony held November 10. Brown was honored by the recently organized middle school being officially named in his honor, Dr. Carter stated.

Paramount Jr. High inducts 18 students into the National Jr. Honor Society



Far Left: Mr. & Mrs. Abraham Kennard and Superintendent James Carter shown with Inductees of the Abraham Kennard Chapter of the National Junior Honor Society of Paramount Jr. High School. Far Right: Principal Frederick Square and Ms. Brenda Grant, Advisor.


Paramount Jr. High School inducted 18 members into the Abraham Kennard Chapter of the National Junior Honor Society on Friday, April 29, 2016.  The 2015-2016 Inductee were: Derrick Allen, LaKayla Bullock, Roydricker Bullock, Tinyre Dancy, Jakeria Hargrove, Talia Hawkins, Dekylah Head, Karleisha Henley, LaCarria Hodges, Ronald Hopson, ShaKiya Johnson, Shandrya Mobley, Jamia Purse, Alanna Robinson, Nigel Speights, Sharlisa Taylor, Jamealeyah Williams, and Kanisha Williams.
The Chapter is named for former Paramount Principal, Mr. Abraham Kennard of Forkland, AL who was present at the ceremony with his wife, Mrs. Flora Kennard.
The current officers and members of the Paramount Chapter are Quantynia Johnson, President; Teresa Moore, Vice president; Miya Hardy, Secretary; Elouise Edwards, Treasurer; Jaylon Scott, Parliamentarian; (members) Woodrow Bullock, IV; and Jalen Cotton.
The Induction Program opened with a Musical Prelude, followed by Entrance of the Inductees, Posting of the Colors by the Greene County High School JROTC, the Pledge of Allegiance led by Tavion White and a solo by Ms. Felecia Smith. The Lighting of the Candles and brief statements on the Principles of the National Junior Honor Society were presented by the following members: Jaylon Scott, Character; Woodrow Bullock, IV, Citizenship; Elouise Edwards, Scholarship; Miya Hardy, Leadership and Jalen Cotton, Service. Following this presentation, President Quantynia Johnson extinguished the candles.
Ms. Brenda Grant, Advisor, presented the inductees for enrollment, pinning and signing of the register.  Principal Frederick Square led the inductees in the Recitation of the Pledge.
Musical selections were rendered by the GCHS Choral Ensemble. Closing remarks were presented by Mr. Kennard, Interim Superintendent Dr. James H. Carter, Sr. and Principal Square.
Special guests were members of the Eunice R. Outland Chapter of the National Honor Society of Greene County High School, the GCHS JROTC and the GCHS Choral Ensemble.
The faculty council include Ms. Brenda Grant, Ms. Su’Kova Hicks, Ms. Janice Jeames, Ms. Drenda Morton, and Ms. Rosalyn Robinson.
A reception was held for guests, parents, members and inductees.

School board retains Dr. James H. Carter as Superintendent

Dr. Carter

Superintendent Dr. James H. Carter, Sr.


At its monthly meeting held March 31, 2016, the Greene County Board of Education terminated its superintendent’s search and entered into a two year agreement retaining Dr. James H. Carter, Sr. as Superintendent of Schools.  The new contract goes into effect June 1, 2016.
Dr. Carter initially came on board with the Greene County School Board in June 2015 as a consultant through the Alabama State Department of Education. He has been serving as Interim Superintendent of the Greene County Schools since September 2015.
The board commenced its superintendent’s search last June 2015 and when Dr. Carter was asked to serve as the interim superintendent the search was put on hold in August until the following Spring of 2016.
In less than a year’s time, Dr. Carter has introduced various programs and initiatives to boost the academic and cultural exposure for students. These include developing academic partnerships with the University of Alabama, University of West Alabama and Shelton Community College; adding additional career-tech courses and opening a Performing Arts Program.
He has also been successful in securing qualified administrators and instructional personnel for the system.  Currently he is directing significant improvements and updates to the structures at the former Peter J. Kirksey Vocational School. At the March board meeting, Interim Superintendent Carter gave the following report:
* Carver Middle School and Eutaw Primary School will be the sites for the Summer Feeding Program.
* Summer school will be held the first week in June to the first week in July.  Lunches will be provided for those students enrolled.
* A two week Academic Academy will also be available for students at each of the schools during the first two week in June.
* Plans are to explore more academic and athletic scholarships for students.
* Develop more academic plans for special needs students.* Devise strategies to enhance the menus in the Child Nutrition Program.
* Allow Dress-Up Day for students and faculty twice a month.
* Devise action plan to assist students in scoring above 20 on the ACT.
* Expand course offering at Career Center.
* Board must sign up as Charter School Authorizer by August 1, 2016.
* Planning for Virtual School Pilot.
* Advance Ed will review school system documents regarding accreditation April 17-19.
* Principals, coaches and bus drivers should be certified in CPR.
* Planning mentoring and induction program for new teachers.
* Board work session with TCU scheduled for April 11, 2016.
* Board is pursuing consolidation of Carver Middle School and Paramount Jr. High. Board will hold community meetings throughout the county to discuss this proposal.
* Greene County High School graduation set for May 20, 2016, at 7:00 p.m. in the school’s gymnasium.
In other business the board approved the following Personnel Items as recommended by the superintendent:
* Employment of the following teachers at Eutaw Primary School at a rate of $25.00/hr for After School Tutorial Sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Lashawn Henley; Keshia Williams; Charlease Smith; Brenda Washington.
* Employment of the following teachers at Paramount Jr. High School at a rate of $25.00/hr for After School Tutorial Sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Shante Morton; Sukova Hicks; Felicia Smith; Mona Duncan; Brenda Grant; Tameshia Abrams; Lonia Dancy-Brown.
* Employment of the following teachers at Carver Middle School at a rate of $25.00/hr for After school tutorial sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Vanessa Bryant; Joseph Polk.
* Employment of the following teacher at Greene County High School at a rate of $25.00/hr for After School Tutorial Sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Tonia Sparks.
Employment of the following bus drivers at a rate of $15.00/hr for After School Tutorial Sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Ayanna Crawford; Felicia Davis; Jammie Davis; Brendan Gaines; Jaida Goree; Joe Webb.
Under Administrative Services, the board approved the following recommendations of the Interim Superintendent:
* School Calendar for 2016-2017 School Year.
* Development of a school district teacher evaluation instrument commencing with the school year 2016-2017.
* Reorganization of the administration at Greene County High School.
* Permission to repair roof at Peter J. Kirksey Vocational Center.
* Permission to modify Peter J. Kirksey into a bus shop as funds come available.
* Payment of all bills, claims and payroll.
Bank reconciliations as submitted by Mr. Leon dowe, CSFO.
Designate Greene County High School as a storm shelter open to the community.
The following Instructional Items recommended by the Interim Superintendent were approved by the board:
* Requirement for all students to take Algebra I & II, Chemistry, and Biology prior to graduation commencing with the 2016-2017 incoming Freshmen students.
* A 9th Grade Academy at Greene County High commencing with the 2016-2017 school year.
* Cursive writing course for grades K-2.
* Financial independence course for grades 6-12 (Banking Course) and develop an agreement with Citizens Trust Bank and Merchants & Farmers Bank to provide support.
* Course that will encourage students to participate in voting process and to teach them more about local, state and U.S. government.
* Revision of the Information Guide for Students and Parents.