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State education commissioner tours Gadsden schools

Superintendent Roger P. Milton and School Board Vice-Chair Tyrone Smith welcomed Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart to Gadsden County High School this past Monday morning for the start of another school year.

The Commissioner, Superintendent, and School Board members welcomed students at several schools as they arrived for the first day of the 2018-2019 school year. The Commissioner chose Gadsden County as her first school district to visit in order to kick off the new school year and help celebrate Gadsden’s successful 2017-2018 school year. Beginning at 7 a.m., the Superintendent, Vice-Chair, and Commissioner Stewart welcomed students back to Gadsden County High School.

School Board Chair Steve Scott joined the Commissioner and Superintendent at George W. Munroe Elementary. Other schools visited by the Commissioner included James A. Shanks Middle School, Gadsden Elementary Magnet School, Stewart Street Elementary School and Carter Parramore Academy. School leaders, school staff, the Superintendent, Board Members, and the Commissioner stood side-by-side extending a warm welcome to all parents and students arriving at Gadsden County schools on their first day back.

According to school district officials, the first day of school is the beginning of a new journey for students and parents.

“It is filled with a sense of excitement and mixed feelings ranging from cool and calm on the outside to a bundle of nerves on the inside,” a school board press release states. “Every staff member in Gadsden County is committed to making this new school year another amazing one.”

School officials say at the end of the day, every day, teachers are asked to reflect on the day and celebrate those moments of success and strategize about those moments that can be tweaked so that tomorrow they will become moments of success.

After the opening day tour, Superintendent Milton and the Commissioner met briefly at the School Board office, where he was joined by School Board member Charlie Frost and the Area Directors of Curriculum to share 2017-2018 accomplishments and discuss 2018-2019 directions for the upcoming school year.

The Commissioner made some recommendations and gave the Superintendent some commendations, including recognition for the rise in third grade reading scores. A priority of the Superintendent’s 2017-2022 Strategic Plan includes improving early learning so that every child reads on grade level by grade 3, a school district press release states.

“The Commissioner’s commendation reinforced the Superintendent’s strategic priority that will lead the district from ‘Good’ to ‘Great.’ Early learning is the beginning building block of student success,” the press release continues.

School officials say the district will continue to embrace its partnership with parents and the community and together Gadsden County will persist in “Putting Children First.”

Special to The Herald

All photos courtesy Gadsden County School District