All Hillsboro eighth graders will have access to a Chromebook as part of a pilot program during the coming school year, it was reported at Wednesday’s Hillsboro City Schools Board of Education meeting.
Eric Hennison, the school district’s technology director, said that last year one eighth grade class had Chromebooks, but this year all eighth graders will have one to use.
“It’s for us to see what kind of road blocks there may be for a one-to-one program,” Hennison said. “We want to get a good feel as to what that looks like in one of our grade levels.”
Hennison said that end of the school year the staff and administration will discuss how the Chromebooks worked and decide whether they want to continue the program at the high school and middle school or stay where they’re at.
In another matter, the school board honored two students who set school track and field records last season, along with their parents.
Honored were Austin Goolsby, a sophomore who finished second in the state while setting a school record of 15-8 in the pole vault; and Jayleigh Hart, an eighth grader who set a middle school record of 13.00 seconds in the 100-meter dash.
“Great kids don’t just happen. Let me add that such accomplishments come principally from loving and encouraging parents,” board member Tom Milbery said. “Laura and Greg Goolsby and Jenny and David Hart – thank you for all that you quietly do for the Hillsboro school and community. Your efforts, while you would wish them to remain unnoticed, are commendable. It is with great honor that we recognize you as well. Thank you. And God bless.”
In other news from the meeting:
• Treasurer Adam Zink said the district’s cash balance at the end of May was $8.15 million, compared to $7.33 million for the same time the year before. Expenses for May were $2.02 million.
• The board accepted a $36,000 donation from the Hillsboro Athletic Boosters. Zink said that the end of each fiscal year the boosters take the money they need to get started for the coming school year, then use whatever they have left over to help subsidize the athletic department.
• The board approved fiscal year 2017 temporary appropriations of $35.08 million.
• The board approved participation in the National School Lunch Program. Without the numbers in front of him, Zink estimated the district receives $530,000 anually from the program. He said school lunches would be much more expensive if the district didn’t participate in the program.
• The board accepted the resignations of teachers Michael Cheesbro, Kim Evans, Paula Kiser and Molly Stevens; intervention specialist Matt Hodge; and guidance counselor April Michael. Superintendent Jim Smith said the district has hired 18 new teachers and still needs to fill four positions for the coming school year.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or on Twitter @13gillilandj.