Message from the Superintendent
As we prepare for the 2014-2015 school year, I am both excited and eager to approach another opportunity for our students to expand their potential and for our faculty and staff to grow professionally. The students who attend Denmark-Olar Schools can be motivated to change the world through discovery, research, and excellence. Our teachers play a vital role in this process and they are compelled to encourage our students to achieve.
During the 2013-2014 school year, the district made outstanding progress. Denmark-Olar Elementary School received a gold and silver flag; several students at Denmark-Olar High School achieved perfect scores on state tests; the graduation rate improved; the drop-out rate decreased; parent and community cooperation and input showed improvement throughout the district; and so did attendance. More and more, we know that education transforms lives and it can inspire communities to support schools. We are here to provide opportunities and to instill in students, PreK-12, the confidence and knowledge that they can achieve great ambitions and make a contribution to society through guidance and direction from faculty and staff. We look forward to strengthening core values and achieving success through providing an exceptional educational experience that purposely points our students toward success.
This year holds its challenges and complex issues, but it also holds opportunities for growth and inquiry. We will rise to the occasion with continued commitment, dedication and service. I encourage our administrators, faculty, and staff to continue to provide for our students, parents, and community, unyielding dedication of service in order to accomplish the tasks set before us. I am certain this academic year will be marked with many successes and triumphs as well as challenges and obstacles. We will give our utmost to be held accountable for the progress each one has made. We have the capabilities to engage our students in many levels of comprehension and understanding that is beyond the imagination. By purposely choosing our direction and having determination to maintain our vision, we will discover new territories and explore many opportunities. It can happen, and it will happen.
“Student Achievement, Accountability, Attendance-
Turning It All Around”
Dr. Thelma F. Sojourner
Congratulations to the following students who were selected Students of the Month by their respective schools and received plaques and certificates from the Board of Trustees and Superintendent during the May Board meeting.
MRS. SHELBY GRICE BERRY
Denmark-Olar Elementary School
D-O High students improve, exceed expectations on state report card
SavBottom of Form2015-02-15T02:30:00Z D-O High students improve, exceed expectations on state report cardBy RYANNE PERSINGER, T&D Correspondent The Times and Democrat February 15, 2015 2:30 am • By RYANNE PERSINGER, T&D Correspondent
DENMARK — Denmark-Olar High School earned a “B” on its 2014 state report card, meaning students’ performances exceeded the state’s expectations, the school’s principal reported at the Bamberg School District Two Board of Trustees’ February meeting.
The high school earned a score of 84.4 based on the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, or federal accountability system. ESEA emphasizes equal access to education, along with measuring academic performance and levels of accountability of schools and districts.
Denmark-Olar High Principal Mickey reported the school, which has an enrollment of 208 students, scored an absolute rating of “average” and a growth rating of “below average.” In 2013, the school’s ESEA grade was a “D,” and it earned an “F” in 2012.
Pringle said some systems geared toward academic success at DOHS include an advisor/advisee program; the Bridge program, where rising freshmen attended a four-week course over the summer; and after-school tutoring.
“When we reflect to see what has made the difference … we truly have a highly dedicated staff,” Pringle said. “We want to focus on systemic change.”
The scores on the exit exam (High School Assessment Program) at Denmark-Olar High reflected a passage rate of 86.4 percent in 2014, he said. The HSAP is no longer mandated. Pringle noted that 80 percent of the students also had an on-time graduation rate.
Going forward, Pringle said the high school wants to enhance students’ academic achievement, build the community’s trust and create an environment that is conducive to teaching and learning.
Additionally, during the curriculum and instruction report, Dr. Ruby J. Johnson reported the three schools are holding after-school enrichment programs three days a week, which focus on intervention to increase student achievement.
Johnson said Denmark-Olar Elementary and Denmark-Olar Middle are targeting the areas of English as a Second Language and math. Credit recovery is highlighted at the high school, where students are allowed to make up hours in English, geometry and Spanish, she noted.
Johnson said the schools are also training parents how to use the district’s new Parent Portal, which allows them to look at their students’ grades, progress and assignments via the Internet.
Also during the meeting:
* Trustee Alvin Maynor asked Sojourner where the district stood in using dogs in the schools to detect drugs. Sojourner said she spoke with Denmark police and was told they would take care of it.
* It was reported the Denmark-Olar Middle School Robotics Team competed in the First Lego League Regional Competition Jan. 24 in Walterboro. The team placed 10th out of 21. The team included students Isha Patel, Christopher Priester, Harold Johnson, Julia Avesta, Robert Rhodes, Talance Holman, Zynea Williams and Peaches Patterson. Superintendent Dr. Thelma Sojourner acknowledged each of the students and awarded them with a pin.
* Yolonda Ray, a 1989 graduate of the high school, gifted the district with three flags that were flown in Kabul, Afghanistan. Ray, who is a military veteran, was not able to attend the meeting, but her mother was in attendance. Sojourner expressed her appreciation to Ray.
* Students of the Month recognized by the board were Tamareeyai Nelson, elementary school; Julia Avesta, middle school and Candace Davis, high school.
* Recognized as Teacher of the Month was elementary school teacher Claudia Fletcher.
The Bamberg School District Two Board of Trustees’ next regularly scheduled meeting will be at 5 p.m. on March 9.
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