Lacey School Board Wrap-Up

Also at the recent school board meeting, Lacey fire and police personnel were honored with a Certificate of Valor. (Photo by Chris Lundy)

LACEY – Lacey fire and police personnel were honored at the Board of Education meeting for their response to a fire on Black Friday last year. They were given a Certificate of Valor by the board because several of the first responders were Lacey alumni.

Officers Anthony Sarno and Christopher Meyler, and Forked River firefighter Edward Barker, Jr. were recent graduates. They and a dozen other first responders were honored for saving a woman’s life. They, and other fire and police personnel, responded to a Serpentine Drive home just after midnight, according to police. Two people visiting the home were safe outside, but said that the 81-year-old homeowner was still inside. She was trapped in the building’s garage. Officers and firefighters had to enter the building to bring her out.

Tim Dowd, assistant principal at the high school (Photo by Chris Lundy)

New Humanities Academy

Tim Dowd, assistant principal at the high school, led a presentation about a proposed leadership academy for the humanities. This would be curriculum for “21st century thinking and global citizenship.” Whereas there is a lot of focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education now, there is a hole that should be filled for those students who are more geared toward language arts and history.

Many of the classes listed in his presentation were already available at the school. Additional ones could be added without any additional costs to taxpayers, he said.

“To be college and career-ready, you have to have other skills than getting good grades,” he said. Having a focus like this, on communication and collaboration, shows colleges that the student has the talents needed to excel. Additionally, a student can graduate from Lacey Township High School with as many as 39 college credits.

The goal is to make this program available to freshman during this year, Dowd said.

Anti-Bullying Programs

Assistant superintendent Vanessa Clark delivered the district’s Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights District and School Grade Report. This is a self-assessment done by the school to respond to harassment, intimidation and bullying (abbreviated HIB report). The highest score a school can achieve is 78. The schools scored the following assessments:

  • Lacey Township High School: 75
  • Lacey Township Middle School: 73
  • Mill Pond Elementary School: 75
  • Lanoka Harbor School: 75
  • Forked River School: 72
  • Cedar Creek School: 77
(Photo by Chris Lundy)

PARCC Attendance

Lacey school officials crafted a plan to increase attendance for the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC standardized tests.

The Elementary and Secondary Education Act Accountability Profiles measure schools’ graduation rates, attendance rate, and rate of participation in standardized tests. Lacey met the graduation rate of 85 percent and attendance rate of 90 percent, but was a few points off of the 95 percent required for participating in standardized tests, Wigley said.

The plan to increase this figure involves reaching out to parents on the importance of taking the PARCC, through presentations at meetings, information on the district’s web site, and a letter home.