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High dropout rate at JCHS thought to be ‘anomaly’

The Johnson County School Board met in regular session on Thursday, November 12. All board members were in attendance with the exception of Bill Gambill. Newly appointed Board Member Mike Payne marked November as his first official board meeting as he replaces Brad Dunn who stepped down back in September. 
The November meeting began with the recognition of a special staff member and various students from Mountain City Elementary. Mrs. Patty Roberts was named Employee of the Month at the meeting. Dr. Mischelle Simcox presented Roberts with a certificate while reading what Mountain City Elementary School Principal Gay Triplett had to say about her service. Triplett wrote of Roberts, “Mountain City Elementary is a great school due to people like Mrs. Patty Roberts! Patty serves as the cafeteria manager and is a popular person around school. She draws praise for her attractive serving line and for preparing wonderful food for the staff and all students including those with special diets. She is kind and helpful to all and has the reputation of going above and beyond that which is required.” 
Also honored at the November meeting were those Mountain City Elementary students achieving perfect scores on TCAP assessments. Kindergartner’s Eli Horne and Bethany Stout; third graders George Gill, Kevin Horner, Lauryn Bishop, and Hannah Fletcher; fifth graders Anthony Dugger and Isaiah Fletcher and sixth grader Jenna Horner were all recognized for earning a perfect score on the 2015 Math TCAP. In addition, several students were recognized for achieving a perfect score on the 2015 Science TCAP assessment. These students include, fifth graders Gavin Wilcox and Anthony Dugger and sixth grader Stacy Greer. 
Following the special recognition of staff and students, Johnson County High School students Aisia Robbins, Sara Grace Carlton and Chance McQueen presented the board and those in attendance with a special presentation about a recent trip they made to the Dominican Republic. The trip was organized by their Spanish teacher Jennifer Gillenwater. Both Robbins and McQueen spoke at length about their experience in the Dominican Republic touting it as “one of a kind” and “the experience of a lifetime.” The students went on to speak of the deep bonds they formed while volunteering in both a boys and a girls orphanage while on their trip. Ms. Gillenwater  used to opportunity to speak about the importance of students having the opportunity to travel to other regions of the world and learn about different cultures especially as it relates to language education. Gillenwater asked the board if they would consider putting funds aside for future service related trips (like the upcoming trip to Nicaragua in 2017) for students that would like to attend but cannot afford to do so. No response was given to this request at the November meeting. 
For the rest of the story, pick up a copy of this week's Tomahawk.