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Harris: MHS students care about scores

By By Georgia E. Frye / staff writer
October 14, 2003
Members of Meridian High School's administrative team said they are excited about their jobs and also encouraged by how much students care about their standardized test scores.
Meridian High was the last city school to outline a specific plan for improvement before the Meridian School Board.
Harris, along with assistant principals Sherrod Miller, Vicky Hood and Pat Ross, told the board on Monday that they are in the beginning stages of an academic recovery plan at the school.
Hood said one new policy places poor-performing students into regular classes. By doing that and by giving those students extra help outside of class, she said, those students can build their self-esteem.
Other strategies for academic improvement include providing extra tutorial services after school, reducing class size and encouraging teachers to have students write in all of their classes.
Besides that, Meridian High plans to give students practice tests that mimic the Subject Area Tests, a standardized test that gauges performance in Algebra I, Biology I, English II and U.S. History.
Harris said he hopes that he and the assistant principals can spend 75 percent of their time in the classrooms and only 25 percent of their time dealing with discipline problems.
Harris said teachers can avoid some discipline problems by teaching "from bell to bell," which would leave no down time for students to get into trouble or cause disruptions in class.
Ross, who also serves as the 10th-grade administrator, said Meridian High is a fun place to be. "I can feel it in the atmosphere. The students are excited," Ross said.
Harris also said it is imperative to the success of Meridian High that both students and teachers understand the importance of coming to school every day and being on time.
Harris also said that he and the students believe Meridian High School is an exemplary school and, in time, its performance level will reflect the good work he believes is going on at the school.