Sedalia school board to decide on academy

February 28, 2011

The Sedalia School District 200 Board of Education is expected to make a decision regarding the implementation of a sophomore academy during its 6:30 p.m. meeting today at Smith-Cotton High School.

Other items up for decision include a new art class at Smith-Cotton Junior High and calendar changes for the remainder of the school year.

Board members heard a presentation concerning a sophomore academy during their Feb. 14 work session.

Todd Fraley and Kristee Lorenz, Smith-Cotton High School assistant principals, said a sophomore academy would be the continuation of the Smaller Learning Communities strategy that was implemented five years ago when the district used SLC grant funds to begin the freshman academy.

Fraley said the freshman academy has been a success and attendance has risen since it started.

Fraley and Lorenz said the sophomore academy would include three teams of students who will have core teachers and one counselor.

Administrators also plan to offer a support class for students struggling in math. “We need an intervention in place,” Lorenz said.

Administrators said a sophomore academy would allow the students another transition year before deciding which career academy to enter for their junior and senior years.

“Freshman and sophomore years are vital in the high school career,” Lorenz said.

The district is planning to apply for another SLC grant totaling $2 million, which will allow for hiring personnel, Lorenz said.

Smith-Cotton Junior High administrators plan to seek approval for adding an Art II class for eighth- grade students.

According to district documents, the course will require a $15 materials fee and will continue concepts learned in Art I. Students will study perspective, color, print making and textures in the course.