The EMERALD STAR NEWS Inc.
Thursday, June 14, 2012
WCSB looks At Honors
Should Walton simply do away withhonors classes since there are alreadyother high rigor possibilities or couldthey make all classes honors? As theWalton County School Board met inworkshop session to look at the annualStudent Progression Plan, Board mem- bers talked about honors classes andweighted programs.Staff presented a request that they pat-tern their system after the one OkaloosaCounty uses. In Okaloosa the final hon-ors graduation GPA is completed at theend of semester 7, not at the end of theyear, with provisions for 18 creditgraduation options. Students must re-main enrolled until the end of the year.Only credits used in core courses andsome electives are used. College level(AP and dual enrollment) earn an extrafull weight point and honors classes earn0.5 extra weight. Staff says this will re-quire the student to not only take thecourse, but to do well. They say, withthis system, a student could be an honor graduate without taking any of the speci-fied courses but would have to make
straight “A”s to do so.
The district has basic courses, thehigher rigor honors courses, and evenhigher rigor AP and dual enrollment.The courses are not always available inall the high schools due to the need for additional teachers.Superintendent Carlene Andersonquestioned if the courses are truly honors
level. She told the Board she can’t con-
firm an honors class is really higher rigor.Board member Mildred Wilkerson saidcolleges do not look at honors. She saysthey have to look at the children and thechildren have to want to be in theclasses. Referring to students who leaveWalton and head off to higher education but have problems, Wilkerson said youhave to go to classto be in college.At a later meeting, two South Waltonmothers addressed the Board about hon-ors classes. They said some of the stu-dents need the higher rigor classes,higher than the basic class, but are notready for Dual Enrollment or AP. Theyasked for ways to have more honorsclasses at the school. Right now only anhonors science class is offered. Ander-son explained how the classes wouldneed a teacher. She said the requiredclass size reduction voters approved,limit the amount of teachers they have.She told the mothers they might findanother way, such as video teaching, tooffer more classes in more schools.
Walton Code of Conduct
As reported by WZEP AM1460
The Walton School Board recently held a workshop todiscuss the Student Code of Conduct. This workshop andrevision is an annual event where the Board looks at the rulesgoverning the students. Staff presents any recommended or state required changes. Eventually the code will be officiallyvoted on and published for students and parents.This year the attendance policy was looked at and a recom-mendation made to add Compulsory Attendance. The policywould require that in any school setting where course creditis earned by period, students with class absences, excused or unexcused, exceeding ten in a semester, will be referred bythe course teacher to the Principal. Upon review, if the Prin-cipal determines there is a continued pattern of absence, thestudent will be referred to the District Attendance Officer
and recommended to the State Attorney’s Office for further
interventions.The recommendation includes three levels of offense. Thefirst has the parent or guardian issued a written notificationconcerning attendance issues. The second offence will have a
“Notice to Appear” sent. On the third offence the student can
be placed in an alternative attendance school for the remain-der of the semester and the following semester.The policy also looked at dress. A recommended change isto have approved shirts defined as: crew neck T-shirts, poloshirts, or button-up shirts. All shirts must have sleeves andcover the midriff. No V-neck shirts or zipper-front shirtswould be allowed.They also addressed adding a bullet about leggings. Thestatement would say that leggings, spandex or tights are not permitted unless worn with an outer garment that complieswith dress code requirements. When questioned about this,Superintendent Carlene Anderson said girls were coming toschool with no pants on, just leggings and a long tailed shirt.There are also recommended changes on what to do withstudents who bring firearms to the school and those whomake a threat or files a false report of a bomb or explosivedevice. There is a recommended change to require asthmainhalers, epi-pens, pancreatic enzymes and diabetic supple-ments shall not be kept with the student unless a physicianstates there is a need.
Double RED FLAGS
The Walton County Sheriff's Office advises the public that thereare double red flags flying on Walton County Beaches today.Double Red Flags indicate that the water is closed to the public.According to Walton County Ordinance, "The Director of Emer-gency Operations or the Walton County Sheriff's Office shall haveauthority to declare that an emergency exists and temporarily closeor restrict the use of the beach and adjacent waters for use by the public when conditions endangering the safety of the public are present." After notice has been given to the public, either by beingtold or by the posting of signs, it is a violation of ordinance2003-07. The fine is $100, but could end up costing more than themoney in someone's wallet; it could cost someone's life.According to Lt. Gray of the Beach Patrol Unit, there are numer-ous rescues that have already occurred today, due to visitors notheeding the warnings. "It is still dangerous out there. Don't befooled by the sunny weather," Gray said.Warning signs are posted at the entrances to beaches, as well as businesses in South Walton. They are also posted on South WaltonFire Department's website: www.swfd.org<http://www.swfd.org> and the South Walton Tourist Development Councilswebsite: www.visitsouthwalton.com<http://www.visitsouthwalton.com
Walton Tax Collector Holds Sale
As reported by WZEP AM1460
The Walton County Tax Collector’s Office held the annual tax
certificate auction online for the seventh consecutive year on June1, attracting just over 821,000 bids and generating $3,692,088.15,down approximately $2 million from last year.
The tax collector’s online auction offered 4,905 tax certificates
on parcels owned by individuals who owe delinquent propertytaxes. A sale of 4,128 parcels resulted, leaving 777 unpaid andassigned to the county at 18 percent interest, the highest possibleinterest allowed by law.
“A decrease in property values from previous years as well as a
lower number of parcels offered, are attributed to the decreasedrevenues generated this year through the sale. However, the TaxSale continues to be a benefit to both local government and delin-
quent taxpayers, “said Tax Collector Rhonda Skipper. “The sale
provides the funds needed for taxing authorities to operate budgets
as well as provides delinquent taxpayer’s time to pay their bill
while trying to keep interest to a minimum by awarding the bid to
the lowest bidder.”
For those persons still interested in investing in tax certificates,certificates struck to the county will be available for purchaseonline at www.waltonfl.realtaxlien.com on July 2 at 8 am. Thoseinterested in purchasing county held certificates will be required toregister online to obtain a bidder number, complete an IRS W-9form, and pay the face amount of the tax certificate plus a $6.25 per certificate purchase fee. The county held certificates will be
sold in a similar fashion to the “Buy It Now” feature on Ebay. In-
terested bidders should register at the sale site prior to July 2 toensure all banking information is available upon the start of thesale.The 2012 Tax Sale results will be avail-able at the sale site,www.waltonfl.realtaxlien.com,on July 2.
A woman's dictionary
Argument (ar*gyou*ment) n. A discussion that occurs whenyou're right, but he just hasn't realized it yet.Airhead (er*hed) n. What a woman intentionally becomeswhen pulled over by a policeman.Blonde jokes (blond joks) n. Jokes that are short so men canunderstand them.Cantaloupe (kant*e*lope) n. Gotta get married in a church.Clothes dryer (kloze dri*yer) n. An appliance designed to eatsocks.Diet Soda (dy*it so*da) n. A drink you buy at a conveniencestore to go with a half pound bag of peanut M&Ms.