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Archive for May, 2009

EOG’s all about making grade on Annual Yearly Progress Report

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

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The end of the school year is approaching, and for students that means end of grade tests. For the next few weeks, students will be sharpening the minds and their pencils for the End Of Grade (EOG) testing.

For students, test time is all about getting a passing grade.

“At first I was nervous and now I feel pretty good about the test,” said Ashlyn Harrelson, a Belville 5th grader.

Students feel the pressure this time of year. “There is a high level of anxiety for the teachers and the students,” said Belville Principal Tracy Coston.

There’s a reason everyone is on pins and needles. From third grade on, students are tested on their proficiency level and growth rate in subjects like reading and math.

The tests on scored on a 4-point scale, with four being the highest. Three and four are considered passing.

All the kids’ scores are factored into the school’s adequate yearly progress report, or AYP.

Students within a school are divided into subgroups, based on categories such as race, economic status, and learning disabilities. If just one of those groups doesn’t make AYP, the entire school will go under ‘needs improvement’ status.

“The issues most people would have with the testing program is that you are holding every child to the exact same standard whether that is a special needs child or an academically gifted child,” said Faye Nelson, the Brunswick County Director of Elementary Education.

Kids in Brunswick County have had plenty of practice taking tests. Every nine weeks since the beginning of the year, students have been taking assessment tests, so teachers can monitor their progress.

Critics say too much emphasis is being places on testing.

Students in Pender County will begin several weeks of testing tomorrow. New Hanover and Brunswick County schools have already begun.

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videoThe end of the school year is approaching, and for students that means end of grade tests. For the next few weeks, students will be sharpening the minds and their pencils for the End Of Grade (EOG) testing.

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Associated poll

More: continued here

State of the Pender County address to be followed by public input session

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

Pender County | Pender County officials are inviting residents to hear a “state of the county” address at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the Pender County Courthouse in Burgaw.

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Emergency tweets being tried in Brunswick County

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

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Brunswick County Emergency Services have found a new way to communicate with the public; they are taking advantage of the social new networking site, Twitter.

Emergency Services just opened an account Monday, so it’s more of an experiment, but the goal is to use Twitter as another outlet to inform the public in emergency situations.

“Studies are showing that social networking is the way to get the message out to a certain age population, and so we want to do everything we can to get as much information out to as wide of an area as we can,” said Emergency Services Deputy Director Scott Garner.

Brunswick County already has several alert systems in place. Emergency Services used a reverse 9-1-1 system called firstcall.net to alert citizens of dangerous situations, such as mandatory evacuations, or crime alerts.

The Sheriff’s Department uses citizenobserver.com to inform residents of hazardous weather, bad traffic conditions, and crimes.

Twitter is another way to get the word out.

County resident David Shepherd isn’t convinced the system will catch on. “When you hear about Twitter, it’s more densely-populated areas and this area’s probably not going to be. I’m sure there’s people that use twitter, but I don’t think it’s going to be as big a deal as maybe the emergency services people think it’s going to be; hopefully it may be.”

Shallotte Fire Chief Paul Dunwell said during an emergency situation, communication is key, and even if Twitter doesn’t catch, it can’t hurt. “I think it’s definitely a benefit to folks, they need to open-minded about it and at least give it a try.”

Scott Garner and the emergency services team welcome the public’s feedback on this newest form of communication. To send your comments, you can send an e-mail to bcema@brunsco.net, or better yet, send them a “tweet”.

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videoBrunswick County Emergency Services have found a new way to communicate with the public; they are taking advantage of the social new networking site, Twitter.

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Associated poll

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Expansion for Brunswick County Sheriff’s Department

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

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The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Department has staked a claim in Calabash.

The department opened a new sub-station in this southern corner of the county.

The office is in the Carolina Shores Resort, and being leased for a dollar a year. Any additional charges will be covered using seized drug money.

Both law enforcement officers and residents say the sub-station was needed.

“It’s more economical than having your own police force where you’ll have to outfit everyone, pay for training equipment etc, and also it’ll be ease of access for the citizens to have and in that area to handle administrative matters, to take incident reports, things like that,” said Clint Simpson of the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office.

TJ Cartorette works in Calabash and welcomes the new station. “Always need more patrol, for you know drug trafficking, whatever, always good to have an officer around, emergencies.”

The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office has plans to open another sub-station in Leland.

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The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Department has staked a claim in Calabash.

The department opened a new sub-station in this southern corner of the county.

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Associated poll

More: continued here

Gov. Perdue won’t say much about Easley controversy

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

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Gov. Beverly Perdue says she’s closely watching the controversy surrounding Mary Easley’s job at North Carolina State University but wouldn’t say whether the former first
lady should resign.

Perdue said Tuesday that she hopes the situation gets resolved quickly.

Easley received a five-year contract last year that will pay her $850,000 to run a campus speaker series and public safety center.

The university’s provost and board of trustees chairman stepped down last week amid accusations they acted inappropriately when hiring Easley. Both have denied any wrongdoing.

University Chancellor James Oblinger and University of North Carolina system President Erskine Bowles said Monday that she should step down.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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Gov. Beverly Perdue says she’s closely watching the controversy surrounding Mary Easley’s job at North Carolina State University but wouldn’t say whether the former first
lady should resign.

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Associated poll

More: continued here

 

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