The Washington Times-Herald

May 17, 2013

School board approves new handbooks

Lindsay Owens
Washington Times Herald

WASHINGTON — Members of the Washington Community Schools Board approved the 2013- 2014 school handbooks.  Elementary, junior high and high school student handbooks will now be more streamlined with one another. One major change to the handbooks will be a stricter attendance policy for students. Currently, students in the school district can have 10 unexcused absences per semester.

The amendment will allow students to have no more than 10 unexcused absences per school  year. To aide in lowering the amount of unexcused absences, school officials have partnered with local probation officers, Judge Gregory Smith and Prosecutor Murrie. The policy states that upon the second unexcused absence, students will have a letter sent home that will explain the importance of good attendance. On the fourth unexcused absence, the students and parents or guardians will have to meet in court with Judge Smith on Monday morning between 7 and 7:45 a.m.

The consequences of poor attendance will be explained to the individuals. After the sixth unexcused absence, students and parents or guardians will be called to the school to find out why the student is habitually unexcused. Upon the eighth unexcused absence, students may lose their work permit, driver’s license, field trip privileges, cafeteria privileges or open campus if the student is a senior.  After 12 unexcused absences, students may face loss of credits or may be expelled.

Two groups of students involved in SeaPerch will compete today in the SeaPerch Challenge 2013 National Championship in Indianapolis. Both groups of students will be competing in the pool competition.

Connor Brashear and Anna Schilling spoke about their recent experiences competing in the International  Career Development Conference in Anaheim in last month. Schilling and her partner, Alex Rosa finished second in the stock market competition while Brashear was elected Central Region Vice President.

“I couldn’t have done any of this without Anna, “ said Brashear. “ Our campaign was pretty pricey but I think our professionalism is what really made the campaign work for us. We handed out 2,500 brochures, sunglasses, metal business cards and flash drives.”

In other news, German American Bank has signed on to sponsor a new sign in front of the school. The electronic sign will feature a 2 foot by 8 foot sponsor section and section with the school name the same size.  German American will be the sponsor for 60 months after which the school board can decide to renew the sponsorship, search for a new sponsor or chose to have no sponsor at all. The new sign will be significantly larger than the current sign.

Cindy Kramer’s resignation was approved by the board. Kramer had taught 26 years. Brian and Lori Hancock stepped down as sophomore class sponsors. David Harman resigned as the eighth grade girl’s basketball coach. Lauren Hannan’s resignation from Title I instructional assistant was also approved as were Holly Mattingly ( high school assistant cheer coach) and Eric Browning (seventh grade assistant football coach).