Onslow Connection

Keeping you informed

This newsletter provides a summary of the Board of Education meetings Feb. 2, 2016, along with other pertinent news


Dr. Lesley Eason, associate superintendent of Instructional Services and Continuous Improvement, provided board members results from a Clyde Erwin Elementary parent and staff survey to determine the level of support for the implementation of a year-round calendar at Clyde Erwin.

All parents of children attending schools received the survey - 45% responded; 70% supported the implementation of a year-round calendar. All staff responded with70% supporting a year-round calendar; 4% responded maybe.

The board discussed the need for additional stakeholder surveys and expressed a desire to spend more time looking at every aspect before making a decision.

I will include the Early High School information in the summary of last night's board meeting.

Steve Myers, assistant superintendent of Auxiliary Services, provided an update on the Dixon Middle School construction.

The footings and foundations were completed Oct. 2015; the project was awarded to Clancy & Theys. There was a budget amendment to reflect reductions in the cost of the project from $32,000,000 to $28,752,517. NCDOT recently warranted a stop light on the corner of Ridgefield Ave. and Hwy. 210, which is very good news. The second phase of construction is underway. In spite of the rain, the project is on time and on budget and is still slated to open for the 2017-18 school year.
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Board of Education Meeting

There were four actionable items on the agenda, three involving minor policy revisions recommended by the North Carolina School Board Association.

Last night and as part of the workshop earlier in the day, the Board of Education heard more details about a proposal that will provide our students with one more route to excellence in education.

Onslow County Schools and Coastal Carolina Community College have initiated discussions about opening an early college high school (ECHS). If implemented, the ECHS will blend high school and college coursework in a rigorous yet supportive environment.

Dr. Lingle, the president of Coastal, recently made the decision to support the early college program and agreed to house it at Coastal.

This will benefit first generation college-goers, those at-risk of dropping out or other historically underserved populations of our student body and will give them the opportunity to earn a high school diploma and an associates degree or up to two years of credit toward a four year degree, at no cost.

Board members were very supportive of an early college high school. Staff will move forward with the next steps — complete the intent to apply and submit that to NCDPI and will begin to develop a comprehensive plan and budget to bring before the board.

The board unanimously approved an increase in the out-of-county tuition rate for 2016-17 to $1,900. The out-of-county tuition rate this year is $1,856, as established by the board.

The board unanimously approved revisions to Policy 3540: Comprehensive Health Education Program, Policy 4351: Short-Term Suspension and Policy 4353: Long Term Suspension, 365 Day Suspension, Expulsion as recommended by NCSBA. Those revisions can be found on the district website

Sign Raising for the new Richlands Elementary School

The skies cleared and the sun came out Tuesday afternoon making for a picture perfect day for asign raising in Steed Park to signify the future Richlands Elementary School.

Thanks to the agreement between the Commissioners and the School Board, the new Richlands Elementary is slated to open for the 2018-19 school year.

County Commissioners and Board of Education members were on hand for the informal ceremony . The two governing bodies are happy for the Richlands community and for the students who will enjoy the new school.

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Message from Superintendent Stout

I've said it many times, our community partnerships are invaluable and we should never take them for granted.

With the support of Coastal Carolina Community College we have been able to provide our students with many academic opportunities over the years and now Dr. Lingle has given his nod of approval for and early college high school on Coastal's campus.

The ECHS initiative encourages more students to complete high school and to gain the advanced skills increasingly demanded in the 21st century workplace. Early college high schools support students through what effectively become their first two years of college - typically the most vulnerable period for students from low-income families. Because students earn two years of college credit without paying tuition, early colleges also lift the financial barrier students and families often face when considering college.

We are very excited about this, and to seeing the two new schools erected by 2018!

Message from Chairwoman Pam Thomas

The proposed early college high school initiative offering yet another opportunity for our students has been a part of the board and school leadership's vision for many years, so we are excited to see it move forward.

Having attended the All-County Band event last weekend, MATHCOUNTS, and a faculty meeting at Carolina Forest this week, I want to say it is such a pleasure and privilege to visit our schools and be a part of all these wonderful events and competitions involving the areas of the arts, athletics and academics. We are a school district with much going on, and I am so proud of the many great accomplishments of our staff and our students.

And it should go without saying we are very eager for the construction of the Dixon Middle and Richlands Elementary Schools.