Armstrong was sworn in by the Dyer County Commission at its January meeting, so he joined school board members at Tuesday's meeting ready to take care of school business.
First on the agenda was a presentation on dual-enrollment opportunities for Dyer County High School students by Principal Peggy Dodds.
"One of the things I am extremely proud of is that our high school, for years, has had the largest number of students at Dyersburg State (Community College) and the (Tennessee) Technology Center (at Newbern)," said Dyer County Director of Schools Dr. Dwight Hedge. "The program does a number of things. No. 1: it provides a tow-in program at the college and allows students to begin their college experience with a little supervision instead of just throwing them into college as I was my freshman year. No. 2: it saves parents a ton of money. No. 3: it helps students finish up college faster. I think it is one of the best things we've got going."
"Students have always been able to take college courses at DCHS," said Dodds, who said it has been a steady trend over the past five years for students to complete dual-enrollment courses prior to their graduation from DCHS. "We have had upwards of nine teachers teaching courses on our campus."
Dodds said the school's block schedule allows students to succeed in the in-depth courses. She introduced school board members to several of the DCHS educators who currently lead students in the system's dual-enrollment program.
Dodds reported that 718 students take part in six on-campus dual-enrollment classes at DCHS, with 28 students taking classes off-campus and 71 taking classes at the Tennessee Technology Center at Newbern.
"Those of us who work at Dyersburg State enjoying getting the students who have been through this program," said Dyer County School Board representative Carol Feather, an instructor at DSCC. "They are good students."
* tabled a discussion of the superintendent evaluation until the March meeting and requested Chairman Mike McLaughlin present his version of the evaluation at that time.
School board member William Mays moved to table the discussion of the superintendent evaluation until the March meeting, with Maria Starks adding a second. The motion passed, unanimously, by school board members present at the meeting in the conference room at Central Office. Ross Maldonado was the only school board representative absent from the February meeting.
McLaughlin agreed to make a presentation at the March meeting.
* approved the 2013-2014 school calendar (see related story)
* corrected School Board Policy DJED concerning bids and quotations to match state mandates. Dr. Larry Lusk said the change includes adding "Contracts that expend federal funds must be first approved by the Federal Programs Director" as the last line of the policy.
Feather moved to approve the correction, with LeAnn Childress adding a second. The motion passed, unopposed.
* passed a resolution required by the state to comply with all OSHA training and reporting practices. Dyer County Schools new Safety Director John Pleasant said the resolution, which may be passed on its first reading, is required to be renewed every five years.
"This is another state requirement," said Hedge. "It's something we have to do."
Starks moved to approve the resolution, with Keith Anderson providing a second. The motion passed without opposition.
* approved "housekeeping" items for Federal Projects amending IDEA Part B, the Local Consolidated Plan and FY 2013.
School board representative Steve Dodds moved to approve the three amendments, with Starks adding a second. The motion passed, unanimously.
Students in the Dyer County School System will begin the 2013-2014 academic year with a half day on Wednesday, July 31.
Regular classes will begin on Thursday, Aug. 1, with school out in the first semester for Labor Day on Monday, Sept. 2 and Fair Day on Friday, Sept. 6.
Parent-Teacher conferences will be held from 3:30-6:30 p.m., on Thursday, Oct. 3 and Thursday, March 13.
Fall Break will take place Oct. 6-11, with teacher inservice scheduled for Monday, Nov. 4 and classes out for Thanksgiving Nov. 27-29. Teachers will participate in another half day of inservice on Friday, Dec. 20, followed by Winter Break from Monday, Dec. 23 through Friday, Jan. 3.
The second semester begins on Monday, Jan. 6, 2014, with students out for Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, Jan. 20 and President's Day on Monday, Feb. 17.
TCAP Writing Assessments will take place Feb. 3-7, and ACT Test Day is scheduled for Tuesday, March 4.
Spring Break is scheduled March 17-21, with teacher inservices slated for Friday, March 14.
In April, no classes will be held on Good Friday, April 18, with May 2 tentatively set for TCAP testing.
Dyer County High School will hold commencement for members of the Class of 2014 on Friday, May 16.
The last day of the 2013-2014 academic year is scheduled on Friday, May 23, with a half day's inservice for teachers in pre-K through eighth grade only set for that day.
Members of the Dyer County School Board approved the calendar for the 2013-2014 academic year at the organization's regular February meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 5. School board member William May moved to approve the calendar, with Maria Starks adding a second. The motion passed, unanimously, by members present at the meeting in the conference room at Central Office. School board member Ross Maldonado was the only representative absent from the February meeting.