Leader Blues

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

TOP STORY >> Cabot students getting enough instruction

By SARA GREENE
Leader staff writer

However, the accredited-probationary status given to the school in August for not having enough instructional time will remain in effect until the school’s accreditation is re-viewed again in the spring.

“It (the review) does not mean anything one way or another, it simply closes out the 2004-05 school year for Cabot High School,” said Annette Barnes, school improvement coordinator.

Despite having a 369-minute long school day, Cabot High School was among 96 schools across the state placed on accredited-probationary status in August for not meeting the 360 minutes of instruction time per day standard by the Arkansas Board of Education.

“We are very pleased the De-partment of Education came back to review us and affirmed we were not in violation after all,” said Tony Thurman, principal at Cabot High School.

Accredited-probationary status means a local school district has either failed to correct a problem for which it acquired accredited-cited status or committed a more serious violation of the standards.

The 2004-2005 bell schedule at Cabot High School shows a 369-minute school day, from 8:05 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.
But the Arkansas Board of Education decided 25 minutes of the school day used by Cabot High School students for advising and career action planning should not be considered instructional because club meetings are permitted during that time.

Advisory and career-action planning are key components of the High Schools That Work program that offers students both traditional college-preparatory academics with technical and vocational studies.

Cabot High School has a revised bell schedule for the 2005-06 school year that has 371 minutes of instruction four days a week and 364 minutes of instruction on Thursdays.

This meets the instruction requirements as well as allowing time for tutoring, literature circles and career-action planning.
Another time crunch for Cabot High School students is the time required between classes. Typically five minutes are allowed.
Cabot High School allows seven minutes, an extra 12 minutes per day, for 1,700 students to navigate the 25 buildings on the 44-acre campus.

The new schedule still allows seven minutes for students to get from one class to another.