By Hannah Curran, Editor
TRUSSVILLE — The Trussville City Schools Board of Education discussed the upcoming school year and the recently released third-grade reading proficiency scores during the board meeting on Thursday, July 28.
Trussville Superintendent Dr. Pattie Neill discussed that students are paying for school meals for the first time since 2020.
“Our prices are what we had before COVID, and we’re asking parents to qualify for free or reduced meals if they believe they might qualify,” Neill said. “So the most important thing about school meals is you can’t deny a student a meal, and if they can’t pay at the point of service at first, we’ll just log that in. We’re going to start a special line item on Neighborhood Bridges, where anybody in the community who wants to support a student who can’t afford to pay for their lunch or breakfast will just go right into the line item for Neighborhood Bridges and pay for that meal immediately.”
Neighborhood Bridges Trussville is about kindness, speed, efficiency, and bridging all community resources to drive direct support and care to remove barriers for children/families in need.
According to the Neighborhood Bridges website, 100 percent of what is raised in each community remains in each community. Neighborhood Bridges has successfully achieved this goal every day since it launched on Martin Luther King Day, 2017.
Neill also announced that TCS will receive a career coach this year and that the state of Alabama has funded a full unit for Hewitt-Trussville High School (HTHS).
“We’ve shared a career coach with Leeds High School in the past,” Neill said. “We have the State Career Coach job description for Board approval tonight, we’re just adopting the State Career Coach job descriptions and making it our own. We’re super excited because we’re getting more and more businesses who want to partner with us and do internships with our high school students.”
Neill explained that if the students are college bound, they’re less likely to need a career coach, and if they’re not college bound, TCS wants to be sure that there are ways to connect them through career technology education (CTE).
“CTE starts in middle school, and the career coaching starts in high school,” Neill said.
Dr. Lisa Berry discussed the recently released Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE) third-grade reading proficiency scores.
Related Story: Trussville City Schools No. 3 in state reading proficiency, Cahaba Elementary tops among Metro Birmingham peers
The release of scores comes as schools prepare for the implementation of the Literacy Act which, after delays by the Alabama legislature, will be in full force for the 2023-24 school year. The Literacy Act, passed in 2019, calls for third graders not reading at grade level to be retained to receive additional instruction and support.
TCS posted the third highest percentage of grade level readers in the state among all school districts with 95.6 percent of third graders reading at grade level. Only Mountain Brook at 96.7 percent and Saraland at 96 percent fared better.
Cahaba Elementary led the way among Trussville elementary schools with 98.8 percent of 3rd graders reading at grade level, finishing in the top five among all schools in Alabama, including magnet schools.
Also among the best in Alabama were Paine Elementary and Magnolia Elementary, who were neck and neck with 94.6 percent and 94.4 percent reading at grade level, respectively. All three TCS elementary schools far outpaced the state average of 77.7 percent.
Berry thanked all the faculty and staff for their hard work in making sure that TCS students excelled.
Redmont Consulting Group Managing Director Doug Neil spoke to the board about the Glendale Farms Preserve that will go before the Trussville City Council during the August 9 council meeting.
“The development team is extremely excited about the project and welcomes the opportunity to work with the school board and the city to create an opportunity for the potential development and school if that is the right path.”
Chad Carroll from the Trussville Veterans Committee and also the local American Legion Post 205 asked the board to consider supporting the Veterans Day started in Alabama Educational Campaign in coordination with the 75th anniversary of Veterans Day.
“We’re trying to get these posters in school, educate our students, our faculty, and our community on the importance of Veterans Day and what it means,” Carroll said. “I’m requesting that each school, if possible, in Trussville to display a poster, put it up in the library, common area, history classroom, but have one up, and also help open the door for us this year to help you all out in your Veterans Day activities and ceremonies.”
During the meeting, TCS BOE congratulated the 2022 HTHS Baseball Team for being 7A State Runner-ups finishing the season with an overall record of 31-6-1. This team had the best winning percentage in school history with a 4-2 area record and being the 2022 7A Area 6 Champion.
Also, TCS BOE held it’s first public budget hearing presented by Jim Kirkland.
In other news, the board approved:
- Approve Accounts Payable for: June 2022;
- Approve Payroll for: June 2022;
- Approve Financials: June 2022;
- Approve Retreat/Work Session Record and Board Minutes for June 28, 2022;
- Approve copier leases for two copiers for Hewitt-Trussville Middle School;
- Approve contracts/agreements for special education:
- School Psychometrist;
- Speech Pathology in Spanish;
- Approve annual subscription for Truancy Dashboard;
- Approve the following Bids for Facilities:
- Bid 22-11 for HTHS, Field House, Athletic and Band fields Lawn Care;
- Bid 22-12 for TCS Turf, Tree and Shrub Chemical Application;
- Bid 22-10 for Hewitt-Trussville Middle School Cleaning;
- Approve CC Agreement;
- Approve EDF07-28-22-01;
- Approve Aimswebplus Early Reading and Math Assessments software;
- Approve agreement for an event team for 2022-23;
- Approve amendment to add a 3rd athletic trainer;
- Approve the following facility usage agreements:
- Youth Flag Football for JV & Freshman Football practice fields;
- Trussville Volleyball Fall League for HTHS Gyms;
- Flag Football Practices and/or Soccer Practices for football field and Lower practice field;
- Weekly Females in Action Boot Camp Workout Tuesdays (5:30 a.m.), Thursdays (5:30 a.m.), and Saturdays (7:00 a.m.);
- Approve bid for lighting and sound at HTMS and HTHS;
- Approve the following field trips:
- HTMS Cross Country to Cartersville, GA, September 23, 2022;
- HTHS Band to Washington, D.C. April 12-17, 2023;
- Approve contract for Hewitt-Trussville High School Prom;
- Approve agreement for Hewitt-Trussville High School Band to National Cherry Blossom Parade;
- Approve Sign Language Interpreting Agreement;
- Approve agreement for Career Tech Renovation at Hewitt-Trussville High School;
- Approve contract with AB Adolescent Services;
- Approve contract agreement with Resolutions in Special Education;
- Approve the Career Coach Job Description; and
- Approval of superintendents recommendations regarding changes in personnel, contracts, extra services and supplements.
The August Monthly Board Meeting will be on August 15, 2022, at 6:00 p.m. in the Board Room of Central Office. There will be a Work Session at 5:00 p.m. before the Board Meeting. Both the Work Session and Board Meeting will be live streamed. A link to the livestream will be posted on the TCS website at 4:45 p.m. on August 15, 2022. The August 15, 2022 Board Meeting will include the 2nd Public Budget Hearing.