School meal prices to remain the same in ‘15-‘16

Hannah Myers | Jefferson Post Superintendent Dr. Todd Holden requests the 2015-16 schools’ start date to be August 17.

Hannah Myers | Jefferson Post Kindergarten-6 Curriculum Coordinator Jamie Little updates the board on the “Read to Achieve” camp scheduled for this summer.

JEFFERSON —Ashe County school students will not see a change in meal prices for the 2015-16 school year.

Child nutrition coordinator Martha Turner came before the Ashe County Board of Education to request that current meal prices continue to be in effective for the 2015-16 school year.

The price of breakfast for pre-kindergarten through sixth grade is $1 and lunch is $2.

The price of breakfast for grades seven through 12 is $1 and lunch is $2.25.

The board voted unanimously to keep school meal prices the same for the 2015-16 school year.

2015-16 school calendar

The board also discussed the school calendar for the 2015-16 school year.

At the board’s April meeting, Superintendent Dr. Todd Holden proposed two options for the date schools would open for students.

The first option would have students start school on Aug. 17 and the second would have students start on Aug. 11.

Board members preferred an earlier start date but were waiting for the approval of a waiver that would allow Ashe County Schools to start earlier than the state mandated date.

The state requires that the start date for schools can’t fall before Aug. 25 and the closing date can’t fall after June 10. A waiver may be given to schools that anticipate makeup days due to school closings.

At Monday’s meeting, Holden said that according to the School Board Association, the waiver would not be approved for this coming year but he hopes it will be approved for the next year.

The board voted unanimously to approve Aug. 17 as the school start date for students and Aug. 11-14 as teacher workdays.

Read to Achieve

Jamie Little, K-6 curriculum coordinator for ACS, came before the board to give an update on the “Read to Achieve” summer program.

The program is part of the Excellent Public Schools Act and was passed by the state legislature in July 2012.

“The law states that if a child does not show third grade reading proficiency by the end of third grade they are required to attend a summer reading camp,” Little said.

This will be the second year Ashe County has held the state mandated camp for students since it became effective during the 2013-14 school year.

Last summer, 14 students countywide were required to attend and this summer, 26 students countywide will be required to attend.

The camp is also offered to students that may require extra help in reading even though they passed the required tests.

Approximately 60 other students will be invited to attend.

The camp will be held at Westwood Elementary from June 15 to July 2, Monday through Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Transportation, lunch and breakfast is provided to student participants for free.

On June 2, the students will take the Read to Achieve test to determine if they move forward to the fourth grade.

Shooting Club

During the meeting, Holden gave an update about the partnership between Ashe County Schools, Ashe 4-H and Ashe Wildlife Club to form a shooting club for grades 7-12.

Holden said that many years ago, Ashe County Schools participated in a hunter safety program that was implemented in school physical education class. Students were taught safety methods and how to use different weapons.

According to Holden, there has been a lot of interest from parents and community members to start the program up again.

“It’s a great program and it’s not going to cost the kids anything, it’s not going to cost us anything,” Holden said. “It’s a win-win for our kids.”

According to Holden, the club will meet on school grounds but shooting will take place at the Ashe County Wildlife Club.

The initial meeting for the club was on June 2 at Family Central.

Holden will be an instructor for the course.

“I just want to get back into working with kids again somehow,” Holden said. “Being an avid hunter myself, I wish we’d had something like this when I was going to school.”

The next board of education meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 30 at 7 p.m.

Hannah Myers can be reached at 336-846-6322 or on Twitter @cmedia_hmyers.

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