Middle, high schools getting ready for full year of learning

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 SHEPHERDSVILLE - There will be plenty of changes happening at the middle and high schools in Bullitt County.

At each of the high schools, there will be construction projects on-going to add college and career centers.

And all will be striving to improve student learning in the classroom.



The Bernheim school year begins in the same place as last year, searching for a new principal following the departure of Bobby Hart for the National BETA organization.

Assistant principal Jennifer Harrison, the usual interim, said the school should have a new leader in place within the first few school weeks.

“We will not miss a beat,” she added.

Bernheim will continue striving for increased student achievement, focusing on student reading and math capabilities.

Assistance programs include Thinking Strategies, Carnegie Math and Automaticity.

According to Harrison, Automaticity involved speed math during the first few minutes of class as a way to increase student knowledge of basic math properties and facts “off the top of their heads.”

Bernheim has performed student home visits by faculty and staff members in recent years. This year’s visits will take place Monday, Aug. 5, from 3-6 p.m.

The popular 6th graders cookout will take place Monday, Jul. 29, from 6-8 p.m. Orientations are scheduled for Wednesday, Jul. 31, from 9-11 a.m. and 1-3 p.m.

The Bernheim open house is set for Thursday, Aug. 1, from 6-8 p.m.



Principal Robert Fulk said several changes await Bullitt Lick Middle students when they return to start the new school year.

Changes included the hiring of a new library media specialist and a counselor who will spend a half-day working with students, new double-entry doors and security vestibule, and a new SBDM policy known as Assessment Mastery.

Assessment Mastery, Fulk said, would allow students to retake a test they did poorly on once they show their teacher they’ve completed remediation and skill work in that subject.

“For example, if a student received an C on a math test, and wanted another shot at it, they can demonstrate to their teacher what remediation and skill work they’ve accomplished to deserve this second shot,” he said.

The school’s academic goals were providing as much individualized instruction for each student as possible, while offering a positive experience that will prepare them for high school, Fulk said.

Orientation for 6th grade students will tale place Thursday, Jul. 25, and Tuesday, Jul. 20, from 9 a.m.-noon.

Open house for 7th-8th grade students will be Thursday, Aug. 1, from 5-7 p.m. Students can also pick up schedules during this time.



Principal Bonita Franklin reported that Eastside Middle already completed its open house and the school was ready for opening day.

Franklin said one significant change was hiring a new curriculum coach for the year.

For academic goals, she said she hopes to continue to be the “top” performing middle school.



After four years principal Steve Miracle proclaimed Hebron Middle School to be construction-free.

“We will open fully with no construction going on in the building,” he said. “It’s become a beautiful building.”

With the last tiles being placed, Miracle said the staff was focused on the school’s block scheduling. He said blocks allowed teachers more class time for certain topics while increasing weekly instructional minutes from 250 to 370.

“Sometimes 50 minutes is not enough for cooperative-type learning,” he said. “(The blocks are) also going to vastly increase the number of instructional hours per week.”

Miracle said the blocks included “rotating scheduling” so not all classes would be held at one specific time period during the entire year.

Hebron policy changes include polo and button-down shirts of any color, along with jeans that are in good shape.

New to Hebron’s staff are Emily Lilies (6th grade Social Studies/Language Arts) and Rhonda Murphy (6th grade Math and Science). Scott McCabe and John Hardwick take over as Boys’ and Girls’ Basketball coaches, respectively.

Melissa Gross will join the Hebron team as school secretary and bookkeeper.

Sixth grade orientation is scheduled for Thursday, Jul. 25. Students with last names A-M will meet from 9-11 a.m., while students N-Z meet from 1-3 p.m. Parents are invited to a parent orientation from 6-8 p.m.

Orientation for 7th and 8th graders will take place Monday, Aug. 5, from 6-8 p.m.



Principal Denise Allen said changes this year included two new math teachers, the introduction of the pre-AP program, renovation to make a new entrance to the library for students and only having classroom teams for the 6th grade.

As far as academic goals go, Mount Washington will focus on trying to meet “proficiency” for the K-Prep scores and continuing with their mentoring program.

The General’s Bash will be held Thursday, Aug. 1, 6:30 p.m., in the gym.

The school will also be having several transition meetings for 6th graders and their families.



Zoneton planned an open house and Bingo was its name, oh.

Open House Bingo night at Zoneton Middle is scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 1, at 6 p.m..

Principal Rita Muratalla said the fun event allowed opportunities for students and parents to meet with their respective teams.

“Parents can sign up for Infinite Campus Parent Portal e-news,” she said. “They can get school clothing, meet the staff, and there will be Watch D.O.G.S. sign-ups.”

According to Muratalla, participants will have Bingo cards they take to each information station. Completed bingo cards could result in prizes.

Timberwolf Days for incoming 6th graders will take place Thursday, Jul. 25, and Friday, Jul. 26. Both events are scheduled from 8:30-11 a.m. and from 1-3 p.m. Muratalla said parents were also invited to attend the sessions on the 25th.

“We’ve always invited parents and it always helps the parents,” she said.

Muratalla said “proficiency for all” is the goal at Zoneton this year, with a focus on intentional questions and instruction.

“We will provide intervention to help our students to the next level,” she said.





New to Bullitt Central this year will be the hiring of a nursing teacher, principal Christy Coulter said. 

The school is undergoing various renovations, Coulter said. Construction and renovations will continue throughout the school year. 

“All the classrooms are being remodeled,” she said. 

Academic goals for the year include improved college and career readiness among students, hoping that 100 percent of Bullitt Central students graduate with college or career ready status.

The school will focus on raising ACT scores for juniors and raising end of course exam scores. 

Freshman and new student orientation is scheduled for Monday, Aug. 5, at 6 p.m.

Students can pick up class schedules at the school building beginning Wednesday, July 31.



Principal Willie Foster said notable changes for the year at Bullitt East included continued construction to build a college an career center which will affect bus patterns and drop off.

The school will continue adjusting to a seven period-day, instead of a block schedule, which has expanded students’ opportunities to take dual credit courses.

Bullitt East is adding an agriculture program. Foster is hiring a new Math and PE teacher as well as a new band director.

Freshman orientation will be Monday, July 29, 9-11:30 a.m. for students and 6-7 p.m. for parents.

Foster said academic goals for the year included continuing to grow in the ACT and honing in on the new common core standards.



North Bullitt’s Career Readiness Center is on pace to be completed by June 2014, according to principal Jeff Marshall.

“It will give us more advanced placement to accelerate our students,” he said.

Due to the construction, Marshall noted that student parking spaces will be limited during the upcoming year.

North Bullitt students are now eligible to take early college courses through Jefferson Community and Technical College’s Bullitt campus.

“Our big focus this year is two-fold,” said Marshall. “One is providing intervention for struggling students, giving them what they need to pass. Second is acceleration, how to challenge the students academically, helping them find their niche.”

Freshman orientation is set for Monday, July 29. Students will attend from 4-6 p.m., with parents scheduled to visit from 6-7 p.m.

Senior students will attend a special student meeting tentatively scheduled for Thursday. Aug. 8, at 7 p.m.



Implementation of many new educational approaches will be the central focus for leaders of the Riverview Opportunities Center.

Principal Brenda Pirtle said the PBIS positive behavior support program, refined daily schedules and a uniform policy were included among the strategies.

“We have also found that the lack of cell phones increases the students’ academic potential and reduces distractions,” she said.

MAP data will be implemented to improve Riverview’s Response to Intervention plan, providing individualized planning for each student to focus and improve upon areas of weakness.

Point sheets, detailing clear behavior expectations and awards, can help students return to their ‘home’ schools much sooner, within 50 days.

“If each day is successful according to the point sheets,” Pirtle said. “Academically, we track every student for credits earned and daily accomplishments in each class.”

A core group of “caring and compassionate” educators will be joined by new teachers Dan Mahon (Language Arts) and Angela Rutledge (Math).

“We have a very caring and compassionate group of educators working with our students,” Pirtle said.

Defining a realm of opportunities, rather than hosting a program for troubled students, is the perception Riverview continues to strive for in the coming years.

“We created so many new programs last year, we simply want to refine these programs for the new school year,” said Pirtle.  “Our best advantage this year is the fact that the incoming students already know the expectations. There should be no surprises.”