Originally created 03/06/02

Parents address school changes



Columbia County school officials may be rethinking the way they planned to schedule enrichment teachers after hearing from parents Tuesday night.

About 30 parents attended the public hearing on the proposed elementary curriculum guidelines, most from smaller schools such as Euchee Creek and Evans Elementary, which were set to lose a half-time teaching position under the original formula to allocate physical education, music and art teachers - one for every eight classes.

"My child has Spanish and art once a week and P.E. five times a week and is meeting a standard in core subjects," said Wendy Paschal, the parent of an Evans Elementary pupil. "Now you are talking about reducing the quality of my child's education. Why don't you look at the schools that are not performing well and work on bringing those up? Don't set a median and bring down the good to bring the bad up to the middle."

The parents want the school board to start with a base of two physical education teachers, one music teacher and one art teacher at every school, then add more at larger schools.

"We acknowledge that there may be some logic in starting from a base and going from there," Superintendent Tommy Price said. "You do get away from equity when you do that, but that may be what we want."

Reach Melissa Hall at (706) 868-1222, Ext. 113 or melhall@augustachronicle.com.