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Audit shows work needed at Jenkins




Santa Claus left lumps of coal in the stockings of members of the Jenkins Independent Board of Education in the form of an unflattering Scholastic Audit and Review presented by Superintendent Donna Watts. Watts told the board the audit revealed that about 75 percent of “institutional indicators” for a successful school were not present and about 25 percent showed limited development or partial implementation.

On the positive side, the audit is part of a series of steps undertaken by Kentucky school systems to improve their ranking and test scores and the information provided will be an important part of determining a future course to bring the Jenkins school system back into a more favorable position. On the graphing portion of the audit, red, which indicates little or no development or implementation, and black, which indicates limited or partial development, predominate.

“We need to look at using the evaluation plan to make sure the things in red go away,” Watts told the board at its December meeting. “The plan indicates individual needs. We need to look more closely at what kids can and can’t do and direct more resources at what they need help with.”

Watts told the board that leadership on every level would be critical in improving the school performance and that planning toward needs to maximize the available resources would be an important step in returning the Jenkins Independent Schools to academic excellence. She said the audit contains a massive (more than 80 pages) plan to improve performance and gives information on each indicator.

The audit lists nine areas with individual indicators in which the school had deficiencies. In curriculum, with a total of seven indicators, 43 percent show little or no development or indication and 57 percent show limited development or partial implementation. There were no indicators showing a fully functional and operational level of development and implementation or an exemplary level of development or implementation.

The “School Culture” area had 11 indicators and 55 percent showed little or no development or indication and 45 percent showed limited development or partial implementation. There were no indicators showing a fully functional and operational level of development and implementation or an exemplary level of development or implementation.

“Leadership” had 11 indicators and 64 percent showed little or no development or indication and 36 percent showed limited development or partial implementation. There were no indicators showing a fully functional and operational level of development and implementation or an exemplary level of development or implementation.

“Classroom Evaluation/Assessment” was more positive. With a total of eight indicators, 49 percent showed little or no development or indication and 38 percent showed limited development or partial implementation. It also revealed a 13 percent level of fully functional and operational level of development and implementation, but no exemplary level of development or implementation.

“Student, Family, and Community Support” had five indicators and 60 percent showed little or no development or indication and 40 percent showed limited development or partial implementation. There were no indicators showing a fully functional and operational level of development and implementation or an exemplary level of development or implementation.

“School Organization and Fiscal Resources” had 10 indicators and split evenly with 50 percent showing little or no development or indication and 50 percent showing limited development or partial implementation. There were no indicators showing a fully functional and operational level of development and implementation or an exemplary level of development or implementation.

“Instruction” had eight indicators. Seventy-five percent showed little or no development or indication and 25 percent showed limited development or partial implementation. There were no indicators showing a fully functional and operational level of development and implementation or an exemplary level of development or implementation.

“Professional Growth, Development and Evaluation” had 12 indicators. Sixty-seven percent showed little or no development or indication and 25 percent showed limited development or partial implementation. However, eight percent of the indicators showing a fully functional and operational level of development but none revealed the implementation of an exemplary level of development or implementation.

“Comprehensive and Effective Planning,” with 16 indicators showed 31 percent at little or no development or indication and 69 percent with limited development or partial implementation. There were no indicators showing a fully functional and operational level of development and implementation or an exemplary level of development or implementation.

Board Vice-Chairman Tracy Goff said that while no one is satisfied with the recent downward trend in test scores, the audit does provide a specific course of action to make improvements.

“This report gives us specific indications of where we need to improve and specific areas for improvement,” said Goff.

Board Chairman Durward Narramore added that the board has to look at the entire program instead of focusing on any single area and make certain that all interests are met.

In other business, Director of Pupil Personnel Harvey Tackett presented the District Report Card which takes all information from 2007-08 into account. Tackett said the report card contains information on technology, test scores, attendance, drop-out rates, other non-academic material, and other indicators and will be sent throughout the district electronically and will also be available on hard copy. Tackett said the information is available to the public as well. The board voted unanimously to accept the report.

In other business addressed at the December meeting:

• The board set a date for a special meeting to begin planning for the conversion into a P- 12 single entity school system for January 8 at 6:30 p.m. at the Central Office.

• DPP Tackett reported that district attendance stood at 92.4 percent as of December 16 with the elementary schools leading with 93.2 and the middle-high school at 91.7. Enrollment for the elementary schools as of December 16 is 269 and the middle-high school is 281.

• Technology Director Damien Johnson said he has been promised 35 new Apple computers (approximately $1,200 each) for the Jenkins system at no charge by Louisville-based Dataseam if he will be able to attend several training sessions. Johnson said it will require him to be out of the district for a total of nearly five weeks, but thinks the offer is a good one.


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