Smith Says School Officials Struggling To Keep Up With VW-Inspired Growth

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Hamilton County School Supt. Rick Smith, in his annual "State of the Schools" speech, said school officials are struggling to keep up with rampant growth in the eastern part of the county brought on largely by the huge new Volkswagen plant.

He said the county welcomes the plant, "but it has brought some challenges."

He said he got a recent report from the Regional Planning Agency showing up to 600 approved residential lots in the vicinity of the Enterprise South Industrial Park. "That makes me a little nervous," he said.

Mr. Smith said new elementary schools for Ooltewah and East Brainerd will open near capacity, but he said it was determined not to build them with more than 1,100 students.

He said a rezoning plan to help avert East Hamilton School from topping 2,100 students has worked. He said this year the 9-12 was up by one student and the midddle school was down 122 students.

Mr. Smith said, "Hopefully, we will see even more relief next year. But that's not to say it is going to hold very long."

He told PTA members that the schools are required to keep up with increasingly strict achievement standards. He said the county schools will be required to do better by three percent on achievement this year "and we can reach that goal." But he said it will be more challenging to improve scores by 6.25 percent for minority, ESOL and students with disabilities.

He said a Data Dashboard program is giving teachers better access to student data. He said a student can switch from one school to another "and the teacher can have his records the next day. It used to take weeks."

Mr. Smith said the new STEM school is important, but he said he won't back off support for the magnet schools.

He said he does not favor school voucher programs. 
 


Get Emailed Headlines From Chattanoogan.com; Like Us On Facebook, Twitter For Instant News

We send out headlines each day of the latest Chattanooga news. Our news headlines have links that take you to the stories with a click. We also send out special emails if there is a highly significant local news story breaking so you will be aware of it quickly. To be added to the email headline list, just email us at news@chattanoogan.com In addition, like us on Facebook ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ACUFF, TONY DION  1929 EAST 34TH STREET CHATTANOOGA, 37406  Age at Arrest: 19 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County ATTEMPTED FIRST DEGREE MURDER AGGRAVATED ROBBERY AGGRAVATED ROBBERY --- BABB, BARRY ALLEN  1201 SAN HSI DRIVE CHATTANOOGA, 00000  Age at Arrest: 51 years old ... (click for more)

Do Something To Protect Our Children

It is unconscionable in this day and age that these children had to exist in such deplorable conditions and that an innocent baby suffered and died alone in a locked car.  Yes, there is blame and accountability considering this family had child neglect charges filed a few years ago (that were apparently dropped and expunged) and a large part of the responsibility should ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: School Board Shoves Back

The Hamilton County School Board, told that ‘no’ was not an option three months ago when state Education Commissioner Candice McQueen arrived to take over five floundering public schools, may have to ask the Governor to call out the Tennessee Guard. A very vocal School Board shoved a bitter ultimatum right back into McQueen’s lap during a work session Thursday night and showed it ... (click for more)

Chattanooga State Basketball Camp Is More Than Basketball

As Chattanooga State head men’s basketball coach Jay Price out it simply, “Chattanooga Parks and Recreation had the kids, we had the resources.” So, a partnership was struck where the city supplied 140 boys from the inner city and Chatt State brought the facilities. The girl's camp last week had 75 participants.   Just like that the first of what Coach Price hopes will ... (click for more)

Lookouts Announce That Playoff Tickets Are On Sale Beginning July 24th

The 2017 First Half North Division Champion Chattanooga Lookouts have announced that individual tickets for the Lookouts 2017 playoffs presented by CoreCivic Silverdale Detention Facility will go on sale online at Lookouts.com and over the phone on Monday, July 24 at 9:00 a.m.  Tickets start at just $6.  On Monday, fans will be able to secure their seats to the team’s ... (click for more)