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Board of Education amends core beliefs

By Staff | Feb 18, 2009

The Tyler County Board of Education approved changes to their mission statement, core belief statements, core achievement goals and objectives for the 2009-2014 five-year strategic plan at their Feb. 16 regular meeting.

The state requires changes to the strategic plan every five years to keep it current, explained School Superintendent Jeff Hoover.

“There are two parts to the county strategic plan,” said Hoover. “The first part is the five-year part, which only changes every five years and that is what we just did. The other part is the annual update section, which Board of Education administrators are required to do every summer. We will have to do that again this summer.”

While the state requires updates to the county’s mission statements and beliefs, Hoover said that major changes are usually not required.

“Things like mission statements (and) core beliefs change very little because they’re based upon very general, accepted themes,” said Hoover. “That’s why the state only requires them to be looked at every five years.”

Being required to maintain mission statements and core beliefs is a relatively new thing for the county. This is their second time at updating the statements, and Hoover said this time went far more smoothly.

“The first five-year period was our first shot at this,” noted Hoover. “We really weren’t quite sure how to construct them (or) how they should fit together, like pieces of a puzzle. We’ve learned over those first five years, and through some training and such, that mission statements are supposed to flow through core beliefs, flow through core achievement objectives, flow through objectives themselves under the core achievement plan itself. Consequently, they all build upon each other, which is exactly what they’re supposed to do.”

The updated mission statement and belief updates were a group effort, consisting of teachers, administrators, and members of the community.

“I had a committee of 44 people who offered input into the five-year part of it and I got very good input from people,” said Hoover. “Those were good for me so I could see how to reword things so even the public can understand as well. I’m tickled to have it done because I think it’s good work.”

In other news, Tyler Consolidated High School’s attendance is returning to normal levels. The last few months saw the school attendance take a small dip.

“It was a pleasing surprise,” reported Hoover. “We found out that the high school attendance – which is the school that we’ve been struggling with a little bit attendance-wise – was up 4.6 percent. It hasn’t been bad; it just hasn’t been as strong as it normally is.”

The attendance at the county’s other schools was also up over 3 percent. The total attendance for the county was up 3.5 percent.

“If you look at it historically, we are back where we want to be percentage wise,” said Hoover. “That is much, much higher than what the state requires. I believe it’s a 90 percent percentage rate and we’re 93-94 percent.”

The board also discussed starting a summer school program for high school students who are failing. The board needs to sit down with high school administrators to work out the fine details.

The next Tyler County Board of Education Meeting will be Monday, March 2, at 7 p.m.