School Board Backs Bullying Prevention Program
KEVIN HALPERN, Courier Co-Editor
Thursday, December 9, 2010 8:11 pm
Bullying will not be tolerated in Cannon County Schools.
That's the message the Cannon County Board of Education sent Thursday night when it approved a Bullying Prevention Program during its monthly meeting at the Cannon County Courthouse.
Connie Foster, Director of Coordinated School Health, told the Board, "We need to enhance what we are doing in the area of School-Wide Positive Behavior Support and hone in on bullying."
A Bullying Prevention Lesson Plan will now be taught to students at the beginning of each school year, Foster said. However, implementation of the program will begin system-wide in January.
The following strategy statement regarding bullying behaviors has been developed:
"We recognize bullying as the deliberate use of any word, look, sign or act that hurts a person's body, feelings or things. We also recognize bullying as a type of violence that occurs when someone uses his or her power unfairly and repeatedly to hurt someone else.
"To make our school violence-free from bullying, we pledge:
• not to tolerate bullying
• to intervene in incidents of bullying and and strictly enforce rules against bullying
• to empower students to report bullying behavior and to treat one another with respect"
As part of the Bullying Prevention Program, students will participate in lessons designed to help him/her:
• define bullying and understand what behaviors are considered bullying
• understand the effect of bullying behaviors and develop empathy for targeted students
• learn ways to respond to bullying behavior
• learn when and how to report bullying
• learn the consequences the school has established for engaging in bullying behavior
The overall goal of the Bullying Prevention Program is to empower students to report bullying behaviors and to give school staff the tools to recognize, intervene, and issue consequences for bullying behaviors they witness or hear about from students. Students who bully will receive appropriate consequences to help them realize that bullying behavior isn't appropriate and won't be tolerated at school.
In future years, information about the Bullying Prevention program will be included in students school handbook.
In other business Thursday the Board:
• Tabled consideration of a request to open the Veteran's Memorial Gym during the day for use by the community. The request came from the UT Extension Office and the Senior Citizens Center.
"Our county has limited recreation resources for its residents," representatives said in a letter to the Board. "We are proposing opening the Veteran's Memorial Gym during the day for the health of our community. The gym has the potential to provide a location for individuals to walk for exercise as well as play basketball. The gym would be open to all."
A volunteer, Terry Wilson, has committed to work three days, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. He is a retired Lascassas physical education instructor from Readyville.
• Approved the formation of a Woodbury Grammar School Co-op Baseball team.
Jeff Todd is head coach of the team. Players for the baseball team will come from students enrolled in grades 6th-8th at Woodbury Grammar School. In the event the remaining five elementary schools in Cannon County do not have enough students to field a baseball team, those students who attend other schools and are interested may co-op with Woodbury Grammar School according to the middle school division of TSSAA guidelines.
Open try-outs will be held, inclusive of eligible players at all of the county's elementary schools.
If a student reaches the age of 15 before February 1st, he will be ineligible to play the upcoming season.
• Tabled consideration of a Cannon County Middle Grades Fast Pitch Softball team. The proposed team would be for girls in the 7th and 8th grades. It would play games at Cannon County High School.
• Approved a revised Early Graduation Policy for Cannon County High School:
Cannon County High School and the Cannon County School Board firmly believe that a full four (4) years of education best serves the interests of its students and its desire for academic excellence. Therefore, students are strongly encouraged to take a rigorous, varied curriculum to encourage success in post-secondary education.
However, CCHS and the board realize the need to provide a limited degree of flexibility for students who may need to be accommodated for unique circumstances. To accommodate this situation, the following policy and procedure will be used to determine eligibility for early graduation.
1. The student must meet all graduation requirements of the State of Tennessee and the Cannon County Board of Education in effect at the time the student would have regularly graduated.
2. By no later than the end of the first semester of the sophomore year, the student must submit a plan to the principal or assistant principal and the guidance counselor(s) and declare his/her intention to graduate in less than four (4) years. The principal/assistant principal will then schedule a parental conference to establish parental approval.
3. In addition to the special needs of the student, the principal and the Director of Schools will consider the following: age, academic standing (minimum accepted GPA: 3.0), behavioral record, attendance record and demonstrated maturity. The Director of School’s decision will be made known to the parents in time for the student to make suitable scheduling arrangements.
4. If the early graduation candidate possesses a hardship, a 2.0 GPA will be the minimum accepted GPA. Hardship must be documented and approved by the Principal and the Director of Schools.
5. Students who fail to meet prescribed state requirements for early graduation, will have to continue with a regular high school curriculum.
6. Students who enroll in e4tn online classes paid for by the Board of Education and later drop the class will reimburse the Board for the cost of the class(es).
7. Students opting for early graduation must take board approved high school classes (i.e., e4tn, dual credit, AP) for early graduation. A+ or Credit Recovery classes, or the like, will not be accepted.
8. Students may take a maximum of three (3) units of academic credit to be applied toward graduation requirements by completing online courses through agencies approved by the board [Please see Alternative Credit Options (4.209) in Board Policy.].
9. No more than one (1) unit shall be earned during any summer school session [Please see Summer School (4.204) in Board Policy.].
10. Students may take a maximum of two (2) e4tn courses per semester.
11. Students who graduate in December or in the summer, forfeit any subsequent school events such as prom, senior trip, etc.
12. The Early Graduation Policy is a permissive policy. Early High School Graduation will be permitted only upon the approval of the Director of Schools.
• Approved the 2011-2012 School Calendar:
CANNON COUNTY 2011-2012 SCHOOL CALENDAR
August 2, 2011 In-service Training for Teachers (In-service Day 1)
August 2, 2011 6:00-7:30 p.m. All Kindergarten students
August 3, 2011 Teacher’s Work Day-No Students
August 4, 2011 Student Registration-Abbreviated
August 4, 2011 6:00-8:00 p.m. All Ninth graders
August 5, 2011 First Full School Day
September 5, 2011 No School (Labor Day)
September 23, 2011 In-service (In-service Day 2)
October 17-21, 2011 Fall Break
November 4, 2011 In-service (In-service Day 3)
November 23-25, 2011 Thanksgiving Break
December 19, 2011-January 2, 2012 Winter Break
January 3, 2012 School Back in Session
January 16, 2012 No School
February 3, 2012 In-service (In-service Day 4)
February 20, 2012 No School
March 20, 2012 ACT 11th Grade Only, All Teacher Professional Day (Stockpile)
March 26-30, 2012 Spring Break
April 6, 2012 No School
April 20, 2012 Professional Development Day-No Students (Stockpile)
April 24, 2012-May 1, 2012 Achievement Test K-8
May 24, 2012 Teacher’s Work Day-No Students
May 25, 2012 Last Day of School-Abbreviated-Graduation
Parent/Teacher Conferences TBA
• Welcomed Tyler Stone as a new high school student board member,
• The next Board Meeting Workshop will be at the Central Office on Tuesday, January 11, 2011 at 6 PM. The next Regular Board Meeting will be Thursday, January 13, 2011 at 6 PM at Short Mountain School.