04/14/06 — GHS principal says meeting with state was success

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GHS principal says meeting with state was success

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on April 14, 2006 1:49 PM

A meeting between state and local education officials at Goldsboro High School on Thursday was positive, the school's principal said.

Two representatives from the Department of Public Instruction visited the school as part of the state's focus on improving low-performing schools.

Judge Howard Manning originally called for significant effort by the state Board of Education to increase test scores at some of the state's low-scoring schools. Then, in a March 3 letter to state education officials, he identified 19 schools he said would be targeted for closure if they did not show progress.

Goldsboro High School was one of those 19.

Principal Patricia Burden said the school system promptly responded to the judge's pronouncement by sending a letter to state schools Superintendent June Atkinson.

"We prepared a report to get information addressing what we have done in the past, what we're doing now, and what we plan to do in the future," Mrs. Burden said. "The site visit was scheduled after the letter to the state."

Dr. Janice Davis, a deputy superintendent for DPI, and Pat Ashley, state high school improvement coordinator, met with Mrs. Burden, Superintendent Dr. Steven Taylor and Dr. Sandra McCullen, associate superintendent for instruction.

Ms. Burden said there have been areas of concern at the school, including test scores and students' reading levels. She said she felt the three-hour session was positive.

"It was like having a conversation," she said. "We shared information."

The visitors also did a walk-through of the school, visiting classrooms and touring the campus to get a "snapshot" of Goldsboro High School, she said.

"They were here from 9:30 until 12:30. Most of it was just talking about things we had done, my needs at this time," Ms. Burden said. "They had some questions based on the report that we sent in. We talked about different programs we could investigate for high schools and clarified some information."

The visitors had just been to Charlotte, where several other schools on the judge's list are located.

"I think we're one of the first schools in this side of the state" that they have visited, she said.