Bath School Board hears about active students

Bath County School Board met Wednesday evening at Valley elementary School instead of their usual first Tuesday. After the regular opening procedures, the topic of good news in Bath County School was discussed. This month there was an abundant innovation and participation from students; there were three Destination Imagination teams; the Beta Club travelled to Richmond with artwork for the Virginia School Board Associations’ competition; Future Business Leaders of America showcased their business skills; the whole high school band played at the Statue of Liberty in New York City, and students in three classes devised a wind turbine that generates electricity, and others participated in a 4H Talent Show. The names of all these students would be too many to list but as Board Chair, Ellen Miller said, “Congratulations to all of them for participation; the winning is nice but, participating at all is very important too.”

Ed Ozuls, Technology teacher, along with Larry Grubbs, Electricity, and Joey Altizer, carpentry, offered this report just after the students returned from the KidWind Competition at Virginia Tech. It is included here with hopes that teachers will always feel free to send follow-ups on big projects to the radio station.
The generator came in third and won the Judges’ Choice Award for the most innovative design. The students will participate in a regional competition on April 25th at James Madison University, competing against teams from states across the eastern United States. The team’s success is a direct result of the collaboration of different disciplines. As happens in real life, no one class had all of the skillsets required to be successful. The classes combined their knowledge and added their own unique skills to create the finished product. In addition to the Career and Technical Education skills the students brought to the project, the students also utilized skills developed in Math, Science, and English classes to create a product that the judges described as the most innovative that they have seen. The students will use the time between the competition at Virginia Tech and the regional competition at JMU to improve the design and increase the power generation of the turbine.
The remainder of the School Board meeting addressed the annual CTE report from Jane McMullen. The CTE programs showed improvement in the majority of all of the measured areas. The Board would like to continue addressing the question of “How can we measure how well we are supplying the workforce with prepared students?”
At the moment readiness is based on a state test rather than by surveying employers.
A maintenance issue was mentioned by Sue Hirsh, schools’ administrator. There are photographs and recommendations for necessary repairs on the Bath County Schools website, and it is likely that funding for them will come from Capital Improvement funds.
The calendar committee has approved the 2015-16 school year calendar as very similar to this year’s with the full week remaining for Thanksgiving Break.
The meeting wrapped up with several public comments expressing appreciation to the teachers who work hard to make the extra opportunities available to so many students. Board members echoed this appreciation, and how very proud they are of Bath County Students.
Board Chair Ellen Miller requested as many people as possible please attend the Bath County Board of Supervisors monthly meeting on Tuesday, April 14th, to show support for the proposed budget.
For more detailed information from this meeting, visit the Bath County Public Schools website.

Story By

Bonnie Ralston

Bonnie Ralston is the Assistant Station Coordinator at WVLS and a Highland County news reporter. She began volunteering at Allegheny Mountain Radio in the fall of 2005. In 2006 she became an AMR employee and worked in Bath County for eight years as the WCHG Station Coordinator and then as the news reporter there. She began working in radio while in college and has stayed connected to radio, in one way or another, for more than thirty years. She grew up in Staunton, Virginia, while spending a lot of time on her family’s farm in Deerfield, Virginia. She enjoys spending time outside, watching old TV shows and movies and tending to her chickens.

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