The Herald Bulletin

August 9, 2013

Chow visiting all schools as year begins

By Dani Palmer
The Herald Bulletin

ANDERSON, Ind. — It’s the last day of week one and Anderson Community Schools are working on ironing out those operational challenges.

After bus delays Wednesday that upset some parents, — one of whom reported that his daughter didn’t make it home from Killbuck Elementary until 6:17 p.m. — Superintendent Felix Chow said the district is” taking every step to ensure the accuracy and timeliness of our bus schedules” and working with police to ensure that proper safety procedures are being utilized.

With 10 buildings now open, Chow splits his visits up and spent day one in the Forest Zone, including schools like Anderson High, and day two in the River Zone, with schools like the reopened Killbuck, now serving as a kindergarten extension for Valley Grove and Eastside.

“In general, we have a great start in terms of student enrollment, processing/registering students, etc.,” Chow said.

Today he’s visiting Anderson High’s new alternative school, The Crossing Educational Center, located on the fourth floor of the downtown First Merchants Bank building.

The school, currently educating about 50 teens, targets students grades 9 through 12 who have either dropped out, been expelled or are struggling in a more traditional setting. Because it’s partnered with ACS, students must first be enrolled in Anderson’s school system before being approved for The Crossing.

“It’s been really fun and crazy and interesting and good,” said Crossing Principal Nate Lowe, adding the center is already in talks with other school corporations such as South Madison and Daleville about partnering.

They’re still facing some building challenges, like missing computer receptacles, but the students have delved into their academics and already gotten involved with community service projects, he said.

“We’re working through it (the challenges),” he said. “We’re here to stay.”

Also starting a new school year this week, Anderson Preparatory Academy Commandant Robert Guillaume said students and staff “haven’t missed a beat” as the school’s first day Wednesday seemed just like any other day.

He said APA has seen a slight increase in students from not only Anderson but places like Elwood, Alexandria, Fishers, Pendleton and Middletown. The biggest changes, he said, were a new dual credit course in which a Purdue University professor comes right to the school to teach — a pilot program — and added parking on 29th Street.

“We are off and running,” said Joe Buck, South Madison Community School Corp. superintendent. “Things went extremely well for the first day of school. The administration, faculty and staff in all of our buildings do an outstanding job in scheduling and preparing for a new school year. The hours spent preparing by everyone over the summer definitely pay off.”

Like ACS, South Madison began Wednesday on a modified balanced calendar this year, starting classes a week earlier than usual.

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