The education summit at West Ridge Church Aug. 26 included three panels discussing topics including the way the district sends information to colleges and the effectiveness of students retaking tests.
Superintendent Cliff Cole said, “This is to get some honest feedback.”
The college and technical school panel included Trina Boteler, executive vice president at Chattahoochee Technical College; Cathy Ledbetter, dean of the Paulding campus of Georgia Highlands College; and Anita VanBrackle, site director and faculty in residence at Kennesaw State University.
Ledbetter said the district should push to submit students’ transcripts electronically.
Boteler said, “We have to hold strictly to the deadline on transcripts.”
VanBrackle said one of the top challenges she sees is students not being able to write and spell comprehensively when they reach the college level. She said she expects her students to hand-write essays — not just type them and rely on the computer’s spell check function.
Ledbetter said, “Texting language in academia is not acceptable.” A subject the panels all touched on was credit recovery, which allows students to retake tests to make up lost credit.
Adam Grizzle, chief executive officer of Aerospace Fabricators of Georgia, was part of the business and industry panel.
“Do-overs cost money,” Grizzle said.
Justin Pendley, a student at South Paulding High School, said the recovery process is good for the students who need it, but others use it as a fallback if they score badly on a test because they did not study.
Cole said, “We have been having conversations about credit recovery for six months to a year now.” The district plans to look at the policy to see what needs to change, he said.
School system officials plan to take the comments from the summit to create a community engagement policy that enlists the public’s help in preparing students for college and careers.