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Students benefit from new programs

WINTON – Hertford County Schools have several things in the works to benefit students in the 2008-2009 school year and beyond.

In an extensive interview with the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, HCS Superintendent Dr. Michael Basham reviewed the upcoming programs.

“One thing we’re looking forward to is working out an articulation agreement with Roanoke-Chowan Community College for skills for students at C.S. Brown,” Basham stated.

What that means is for an elective, students at C.S. Brown Student Development Center may get the opportunity to not only earn a diploma, but study a job skill such as plumbing, electrical work or cosmetology.

Basham is also planning to work with Hertford County’s faith-based community to provide mentors for students, as well as giving them something to do after school.

“We want to have after school activities for the kids who aren’t already in extra-curricular activities and who have no jobs so they can participate in things like art or basketball,” Basham noted.

He continued, “The purpose of this is to give them something to do after school while their parents are still at work in order to keep them out of trouble.”

Basham says those in the faith-based community he has spoken with are receptive to the idea. The group has an upcoming meeting on October 13 to discuss viable options for the students.

“We are also trying to get coaches involved and folks that care are trying to get ministers to adopt a school to visit regularly during lunchtime, so that kids can have someone to talk to who isn’t affiliated with the school sytem, if they so desire,” Basham further stated.

He added, “We’re not going to try and sell any particular religion or anything like that… the ministers wouldn’t even approach anyone; they would just be there for the kids to talk to if they want to have that option.”

Another exciting plan is in the works that few know about yet, according to Basham.

“There has been a push in this state right now for the public school system to pay for not only the first and second year of college education, such as in the Early College High School, but for the third and fourth year as well,” he stated.

Basham continued, “So it could end up being a free education right up on through a four-year degree and that’s not bad no matter how you look at it.”

Basham concluded by saying that he was pleased with the hard work of the teachers in all schools and the staff at the central office in trying to create a better educational experience for Hertford County students.

“We have spent a lot of time trying to implement what we’re doing and I’ve been really impressed with the teachers and the staff here at central office. I like to aim for continual improvement and that’s what we’ve been showing lately,” he stated.