Highland School Superintendent Considering Ways To Improve County Schools Following Meetings With State Education Officials

Monterey, VA – November and early December was a very busy period for Highland School Superintendent Dr. Will Crawford. In his report to the School Board members at the December Board meeting, Dr. Crawford discussed his impressions of the visit from the Secretary of Education’s delegation and some of the meetings he subsequently attended.

“The team came up from the state, very good meeting,” he says. “Subsequently on December the 6th, Ms. Goff, Ms. Hefner and I attended a meeting in Richmond that was entitled Chartering the Course of Schools in Virginia’. And it was followed by the Governor speaking for a little bit and a reception with the Governor.”

One of the options being discussed for the Highland Schools is to set up a contract with the Virginia Department of Education that would exempt the school from some state regulations. This could allow the Highland Schools to operate at lower cost to the county and still provide a quality education.

“If the legislators want us to continue to have preschool, the Superintendents are asking that they continue to fund it, but they are threatening to say we have to have it without appropriating the funds and that would be very difficult for us; it would be very difficult for us to fund that without the appropriation,” says Dr. Crawford.

Dr. Crawford also attended the meeting of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development to learn more about web-based instruction from the vendors there. At a recent meeting of the Virginia Association of Personnel Administrators, Dr. Crawford entered into a cooperative agreement that may help the Highland Schools recruit teachers in the future.

“We have agreed as a region, we know that it’s difficult to recruit people sometimes, and so what we have agreed is to share the applications so that we might contact people,” he says. “If Amherst can’t them or Fluvanna can’t use them or don’t have a vacancy; I think that partnership will help us because sometimes it’s very hard for us to get applications and get people to come this far. But even if they don’t apply to us if we have access, then we could call and say we have a vacancy. I think that’s going to be a win-win for us.”

Superintendent Crawford concluded his remarks with some comments on budget preparation.

“Going to be working a lot the rest of this month on the budget,” he says. “I had looked at the numbers before, but I actually before we go home for Christmas, hope to have a good rough idea of something I can present to the board in January; because it’s getting close to that time. I know it seems like it’s early, but it’s really not. We need to have some numbers ready in January and we’re going to be working towards that.”

The next meeting of the Highland County School Board will be Thursday, January 5 at 7 PM in the High School Library.

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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