School board keeps it short and sweet

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The Eureka Springs school board met Monday evening with an agenda primarily consisting of principals’ reports, although in executive session, the board added a one-year extension to the three-year contract of Supt. Bryan Pruitt.

Middle School Principal Cindy Holt spoke of an upcoming ceremony to honor high-achieving seventh-and eighth-grade students. The school will have a reception at 9 a.m. on Friday, March 29 for the Academic Leaders Society.

The Reality Check program, providing health information for seventh-graders, has been “very well received,” Holt said. “They’ve learned a lot of good information.”

She said 35 students in grades four through six had taken part in a chess tournament earlier in the evening, and “Jerry Wells and Shelley Martin have done a great job with the program.” Wells has held after-school sessions every other week to help students learn the game.

Science teacher Shawna Miller stood in for High School Principal David Gilmore. “He told me to stick to the script,” Miller said, and board President Chris McClung joked, “I’ll second that!”

Miller said high school students are preparing for ACT Aspire testing on April 15-17. She said the Future Farmers of America chapter at the school raised $5,000 through their participation in the Roughstock Rodeo Challenge with other county schools.

Miller said the high school has acquired five Real Care Baby Simulators for health classes. Students can have the opportunity to cope with a baby’s demands, and teachers can read an electronic record showing how well the students kept up with feeding and changing. “Hopefully this will open the eyes of the students to understand what it takes to have a child of their own,” she said.

The board viewed a presentation about Lexia Core 5. Among other features, the program gives the school new tools to address dyslexia earlier. Several elementary students told the board how the program had helped them.

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