"We've given awards to students, to teachers and to community members- but this one is unique," said Perkiomen Valley school board vice-president Lori Snyder at the Monday November 14 business meeting. "This award is being given to an entire school—Perkiomen Valley High School."
The College Board has named Perkiomen Valley High School to its AP Honor Roll for the second year in a row. The award recognizes the school for its efforts to increase access to Advanced Placement (AP) classes, while increasing the percentage of students earning scores of "3" or higher on AP Exams. In total, only 367 schools across the country achieved honor roll status. Pennsylvania boasts the largest number of districts on the list with 34 honorees.
PV High School Social Studies department chair and AP teacher, Jack Graham, accepted the certificate on behalf of the school. He thanked the district administration and school board for their support and praised Principal Mark Stipa for "being a great AP Coordinator". He went on to commend his colleagues and the students "who rise to the challenges" of AP classes.
"Twenty percent of all 5's (highest score available on an AP test) on the Human Geography AP test in the state of PA come from PV students," Graham said.
The school board has set a goal that every PV student will demonstrate success with a "3" or higher on an AP test prior to graduation.
Outgoing school board member Bonnie Neiman was also honored for her 10 years of service as a school board director. Ms. Neiman has only missed three board meetings during her time as a board director and has served on numerous district committees. She currently holds lead board positions on the School Health Advisory Committee and the Safety Committee. Ann Mantey was elected in the November general elections to fill the seat.
School Board president Lynn Bigelow issued two service awards from the Pennsylvania School Boards Association. A plaque was given to John King for his 24 years on the board and Dave Warren received a certificate for 8 years of service.
Brian Allebach, Director of Human Resources, offered a presentation on employee turnover rate. He noted that exit interviews of employees yield overwhelmingly positive comments about the district as an employer. Based on feedback, the district has initiated an informal mentoring program and professional development opportunities for para-professionals. Statistics show that many PV employees leave the district due to the relocation of a spouse or a decision to stay at home after a leave of absence.
Business Administrator Jim Weaver gave a 2012-2013 revenue presentation. Locally, assessment appeals are having a negative impact on PV's revenues. It is unknown if state funding will remain the same next year or if more cuts can be expected. Governor Corbett will present initial numbers in February.
"We're not getting stable information from the federal government at this time concerning funding," said Mr. Weaver.
The school district will need to prepare a "first-look" budget by mid-January 2012—about a month earlier than is typically required.
The entire meeting agenda, along with school board goals for the coming year, is available on Board Docs. Community members are invited to attend the next meeting- a work session to be held December 5 at 7:30 pm in the high school library.