Annie Metcalf, principal of the North Collins Jr.-Sr. High School, reported to the school board that the school had jumped again in the most recent rankings of the 135 high schools in Western New York. The most recent position, reflecting the 2010-2011 school year put North Collins in the 40th spot. That was up from 52 the year before, 68 two years ago and 81 three years out. Metcalf added that the scores are based on achievement with demographic factors added in.
She also reported that the list is comprehensive and includes private and parochial schools which require students to pass an entrance exam to enroll. The final feather in the cap was a ranking of 14th in the list of “overachievers” meaning the school was performing well above its expected range when analyzed by its size and community factors.
Metcalf credited her entire staff for the continued improvement but singled out the English Department, which ranked 22nd out of the 135 schools, and significant progress by science and social studies. She also praised the students who have been borrowing, on average, 500 more items per year from the school library since 2006.
New sports options could be on tap for students as well according to William Weidner, District Athletic Director. A recent change in state regulations make it much easier for one district’s students to participate in another district’s sports programs that are not offered locally. That could open the door for North Collins boys to play football or boy’s volleyball with another school such as Eden which offers those sports. Weidner also outlined the successful two-year transition of all the district teams into the Chautauqua County Athletic Association. According to Weidner, the move has increased the competition level offered while also greatly reducing travel time and resultant costs.
In a related matter, Superintendent Benjamin Halsey asked the board to consider funding a boy’s Junior Varsity soccer team this fall. He noted the high number of students who have signed up for the Modified and Varsity programs and feels the numbers are too high for the coaches to teach and supervise and would also lessen the amount of student playing time. The cost of adding the program was pegged at approximately $5,000. Weidner told the board that while the CCAA will not offer a JV soccer program, he can put together a season’s schedule against private, charter and public schools.
The board seemed supportive but asked for information where the money would come from. Further research will be done.
An anti-bullying quilt was presented by home and careers instructor Katie McCabe along with her students. With individual panels designed and machine and hand stitched, by the students, the quilt will find a permanent place on the walls of the high school. Also introduced was Ester Horton who added her quilting experience to put all the panels together.