Friday, August 20, 2010

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT!/event.php?eid=144002968966041

**  Follow the above Facebook Link for important update  **

VERY IMPORTANT ‘Save the Date’ announcement:

Monday August 23, 2010 Time 11:00 AM CONFIRMED

Several Cuthbertson families have been working very hard to forward efforts in next steps to officially oppose the Union County Alternative to Long-Term Suspension Program proposed to be located at Cuthbertson High school.

After many days of research and an initial financial expenditure, a request for a legal injunction has been filed with Union County Superior Court to ask that the court bring pause to the action by UCPS to bring the UCPSALTSP to CHS. As a parallel action, a request for appeal of Supt. Davis’ decision and a hearing has also been filed with UCPS Board of Education.

We are very optimistic that these actions will bring legal authority to interpret whether UCPS violated NC Statutory Law and their own policy, while also allowing the UCPS Board of Education to examine the process by which Dr. Davis made his decision.

On Monday August 23, 2010 at 11:00 AM, a Union County Superior Court Judge will hear our motion. The Union County Courthouse address is 400 North Main Street, Monroe, NC 28112.

It is very important that we “fill the room”.

The daytime hour may present challenges for many with work schedules, but please make every effort possible to be present in the courtroom. Many have suggested attending in groups, carpooling, and meeting as a group outside the courthouse. Please check with neighbors and friends to find best ways of showing ‘a presence’ by Cuthbertson families. We are in this together and need to keep our support system strong! Small numbers can equal small interest in the judge’s eyes. Please let’s not allow that to happen.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Bad Choices versus No Choices

Some comments here have expressed that the nature of offenses committed by long-term suspended students should not be treated seriously. Again, opposition is to the location, not the program. Long-term suspended students made choices to commit illegal acts, have forfeited their privilege of attending classes at their home school, and are not permitted on any other Union County School campus. Upon closer inspection, most of the offenses committed are illegal offenses as outlined in NCGS Chapter 14 Criminal Law. Some basic research reveals why CHS parents do not want these students on CHS campus, yet CHS familes are being given NO choices....  Many of these statutes are cross-referenced in the UCPS Board of Education Policy Manual, Chapter 4, Sect. 4-3b. Here are a few:

Physical Violence/ Aggressive Behavior:

§ 14 33. Misdemeanor assaults, batteries, and affrays, simple and aggravated; punishments.
(a) Any person who commits a simple assault or a simple assault and battery or participates in a simple affray is guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.


§ 14 35. Hazing; definition and punishment. It is unlawful for any student in attendance at any university, college, or school in this State to engage in hazing, or to aid or abet any other student in the commission of this offense. For the purposes of this section hazing is defined as follows: "to subject another student to physical injury as part of an initiation, or as a prerequisite to membership, into any organized school group, including any society, athletic team, fraternity or sorority, or other similar group." Any violation of this section shall constitute a Class 2 misdemeanor.


§ 14 56.2. Damaging or destroying coin or currency operated machines.
Any person who shall willfully and maliciously damage or destroy any coin or currency operated machine shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. The term "coin or currency operated machine" shall be defined as set out in G.S. 14 56.1.


§ 14 60. Burning of schoolhouses or buildings of educational institutions.
If any person shall wantonly and willfully set fire to or burn or cause to be burned or aid, counsel or procure the burning of, any schoolhouse or building owned, leased or used by any public or private school, college or educational institution, he shall be punished as a Class F felon.


§ 14 71.1. Possessing stolen goods.
If any person shall possess any chattel, property, money, valuable security or other thing whatsoever, the stealing or taking whereof amounts to larceny or a felony, either at common law or by virtue of any statute made or hereafter to be made, such person knowing or having reasonable grounds to believe the same to have been feloniously stolen or taken, he shall be guilty of a Class H felony, and may be indicted and convicted, whether the felon stealing and taking such chattels, property, money, valuable security or other thing shall or shall not have been previously convicted, or shall or shall not be amenable to justice; and any such possessor may be dealt with, indicted, tried and punished in any county in which he shall have, or shall have had, any such property in his possession or in any county in which the thief may be tried, in the same manner as such possessor may be dealt with, indicted, tried and punished in the county where he actually possessed such chattel, money, security, or other thing; and such possessor shall be punished as one convicted of larceny.


§ 14 196.3. Cyberstalking.
(a) The following definitions apply in this section:
     (1) Electronic communication. – Any transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence of any nature, transmitted in whole or in part by a wire, radio, computer, electromagnetic, photoelectric, or photo optical system.
     (2) Electronic mail. – The transmission of information or communication by the use of the Internet, a computer, a facsimile machine, a pager, a cellular telephone, a video recorder, or other electronic means sent to a person identified by a unique address or address number and received by that person.
(b) It is unlawful for a person to:
     (1) Use in electronic mail or electronic communication any words or language threatening to inflict bodily harm to any person or to that person's child, sibling, spouse, or dependent, or physical injury to the property of any person, or for the purpose of extorting money or other things of value from any person.
     (2) Electronically mail or electronically communicate to another repeatedly, whether or not conversation ensues, for the purpose of abusing, annoying, threatening, terrifying, harassing, or embarrassing any person.
     (3) Electronically mail or electronically communicate to another and to knowingly make any false statement concerning death, injury, illness, disfigurement, indecent conduct, or criminal conduct of the person electronically mailed or of any member of the person's family or household with the intent to abuse, annoy, threaten, terrify, harass, or embarrass.
     (4) Knowingly permit an electronic communication device under the person's control to be used for any purpose prohibited by this section.
(c) Any offense under this section committed by the use of electronic mail or electronic communication may be deemed to have been committed where the electronic mail or electronic communication was originally sent, originally received in this State, or first viewed by any person in this State.
(d) Any person violating the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

False Fire Alarm:

§ 14 286. Giving false fire alarms; molesting fire alarm, fire detection or fire extinguishing system.
It shall be unlawful for any person or persons to wantonly and willfully give or cause to be given, or to advise, counsel, or aid and abet anyone in giving, a false alarm of fire, or to break the glass key protector, or to pull the slide, arm, or lever of any station or signal box of any fire alarm system, except in case of fire, or willfully misuse or damage a portable fire extinguisher, or in any way to willfully interfere with, damage, deface, molest, or injure any part or portion of any fire alarm, fire detection, smoke detection or fire extinguishing system. Any person violating any of the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

Disruptive Behavior:

§ 14 288.4. Disorderly conduct.
(a) Disorderly conduct is a public disturbance intentionally caused by any person who does any of the following:
     (1) Engages in fighting or other violent conduct or in conduct creating the threat of imminent fighting or other violence.
     (2) Makes or uses any utterance, gesture, display or abusive language which is intended and plainly likely to provoke violent retaliation and thereby cause a breach of the peace.
     (6) Disrupts, disturbs or interferes with the teaching of students at any public or private educational institution or engages in conduct which disturbs the peace, order or discipline at any public or private educational institution or on the grounds adjacent thereto.
     (6a) Engages in conduct which disturbs the peace, order, or discipline on any public school bus or public school activity bus.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, any person who willfully engages in disorderly conduct is guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

Tobacco Use:

§ 14 313. Youth access to tobacco products.
(c) Purchase by persons under the age of 18 years. – If any person under the age of 18 years purchases or accepts receipt, or attempts to purchase or accept receipt, of tobacco products or cigarette wrapping papers, or presents or offers to any person any purported proof of age which is false, fraudulent, or not actually his or her own, for the purpose of purchasing or receiving any tobacco product or cigarette wrapping papers, the person shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

Friday, August 13, 2010

CHS G-Wing Could Remain Empty...?

It's Friday the 13th.

Seems like it's been a "bad-luck" week for Cuthbertson families. Surely some are weary of the issue of bringing UCPSALTSP to Cuthbertson High School's campus and forgoing the use of G-Wing by CHS's Class of 2011 Seniors. UCPS superintendent and board of education members seem to think CHS parents are in opposition of the program and can't seem to grasp that opposition is only to its location. An extreme case of tunnel vision and defense of a good idea gone bad exists within the comments offered by all UCPS officials who have responded to parents' concerns. Here are some very astute thoughts shared by a concerned parent:  

Definition of Long-Term suspension from UCPS Policy Manual Chapter 4, Sect. 4-b:
Long Term Suspension is an out of school suspension in excess of 6 days for high schools on condensed academic terms and 10 days for middle schools and traditional schedule high schools up to 90 school days or the end of the current school year, whichever comes first.

At the end of the school year, Long-term Suspensions expire. This means that at the beginning of each school year, there are no long-term suspended students participating in the UCPSATLSP. Which means essentially G-Wing will sit empty on the first day of school. It will sit empty each day until the first UCPSALTSP participant is admitted... 

How much time will go by before a student commits offenses that make him or her eligible?

Excerpt from Dr. Davis’ document released on Aug.11th:
"Students will be offered placement in the ALTS Program by the Superintendent’s Office (in accordance with principal recommendation) after a recommendation for long-term suspension has been submitted by the home school principal and approved by the Superintendent’s Office. Upon acceptance of the placement, students will be assigned to South Providence School (SPS) including bus routes and transported to Cuthbertson High School (CHS) via South Providence School. The program will be voluntary for students who qualify".

What if the first few don’t volunteer to participate? Or a greatly reduced number do from last year? Great news on all fronts if behavior incidences are reduced. But, eligible to participate doesn’t “guarantee participation”. How long will the progression of events take, for a student to exhibit behavior that leads up to a long-term suspension recommendation from a principal? How long will it take to get superintendent approval? Will we see a rush to place students in this program to justify its existence? Program cost will exist whether there are none, or one participant, etc.

What duties and assignments will the “full-time Assistant Principal and two full-time teachers” fulfill while the program stands empty at the beginning of each school year, and until such time as the first participant is admitted? Another quote from Dr. Davis: "The assistant principal position is a teacher ADM (Average Daily Membership) position from South Providence and would be used for this purpose no matter the location of this program". Disturbing that there may be no "membership" on the first day of school? Should Dr. Davis should feel so comfortable freely spending our tax dollars in this manner? The only small positive element of this scenario is that the South Providence principal that is assigned to this program will assist CHS "in the after hours". What type and quantity of educational materials will sit unused, waiting the first participant? Funds allocated to support this program, i.e. fuel costs for the two additional bus rides each day, hourly compensation for drivers, school resource officers, etc. may sit unused while budget shortfalls occur throughout other areas of the system. 

Will G-wing remain empty? 

Dr. Davis’ August 4, 2010 quote from the Enquirer Journal - is “maximizing the use of our resources.”


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Petition Deadline Extended

Many have requested that the petition remain open.

Since there may be many supporters that are just now getting information on the new program, the petition will remain open over the weekend.

Please encourage everyone that may want to sign the petition to do so. It is very important to demonstrate that locating this new program in CHS's G wing is not supported by the community.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

UPDATE: Alternative Learning Program Still Houses Students on CHS Campus

Please read the release posted by Mr. Jackson on behalf of Dr. Davis:

Union County Public Schools (UCPS)

Alternative to Long-Term Suspension (ALTS) Program

The ALTS Program was established in 2005 to award partial credit to high school students who have discipline profiles that are either chronic or a single event that would cause them to be removed from a traditional high school program and placed on long-term suspension. The exclusions from the ALTS Program are bomb threats, firearms, failure to attend required drug class, three-on-one assaults, second long-term suspension (LTS) within the same year, behavior which indicates that a student’s continued presence constitutes a clear and present danger to the safety of students and/or staff, and third suspension from Career Academy at South Providence (CASP). The program is being expanded in 2010 -2011 to offer students the opportunity to earn full credit.

Program Description:

Students will be offered placement in the ALTS Program by the Superintendent’s Office (in accordance with principal recommendation) after a recommendation for long-term suspension has been submitted by the home school principal and approved by the Superintendent’s Office. Upon acceptance of the placement, students will be assigned to South Providence School (SPS) including bus routes and transported to Cuthbertson High School (CHS) via South Providence School. The program will be voluntary for students who qualify.


The ALTS Program will function as an ALTS satellite for all county high schools. Students will be maintained in NCWise in the program and LTS from their home school. Students will be enrolled as visiting students at South Providence School. Teachers in the ALTS Program may access the data for attendance and grades.

At the point of LTS, students will be dropped with either a WP or WF. NCWise must maintain the credit history. As students become South Providence students by virtue of admittance to the ALTS Program, like all South Providence students, upon arrival at South Providence School, students will go through the metal detector and be searched then transfer to one bus for transportation to CHS.

Students will arrive at CHS at approximately 8:45 a.m. and enter the building through a designated door in G wing. Students will leave CHS through the same door in G wing at approximately 2:50 p.m. and be transported back to SPS to catch their appropriate bus home.
 Since these students are LTS, they have forfeited their rights to interact and socialize with students in the regular education program. These procedures will facilitate this restriction.

Students are expected to attend regularly. Administration will develop written procedures for attendance, discipline, late arrivals, instructional support, daily schedules, fire drills, and other procedures.

Students will not remain in ALTS Program longer than their suspension period, but may be removed from the ALTS Program for any further disciplinary infractions or lack of attendance. Failure to complete assignments will also result in dismissal from the program. Students are limited to participation in the program one semester per school year.

Repeat students may have access to the program based on how successful they were in the prior assignment and the circumstances surrounding the second infraction. This is at principal recommendation; however, if a student was NOT successful the first time, he/she will not be offered another opportunity.

Lunch will be brought to the students in the G wing. Students will be assigned a specific outdoor area for fire drills, segregated from CHS students. Students will NOT be eligible for athletic  participation in any school-sponsored team due to the long-term suspension and reassignment to South Providence School for the duration of the suspension.

Students may not be present on any UCPS property outside of South Providence School and the “G” Wing of Cuthbertson High School without specific permission from the appropriate school administrator. No ALTS students will be allowed to drive a vehicle on campus. Students must ride the bus. Protocol will be developed for late arrivals.

Instructional Program:

A full-time Assistant Principal and two full-time teachers will be assigned to the ALTS Program.

(Dan Edwards will stand in for the assistant principal in the event of an absence.)
Teachers will be assigned to blend instructional presentation using project-based assignments

and online learning programs such as OdysseyWare or NCVPS to earn credits while removed
from their regular high school program. Teachers and administrator are South Providence Highly Qualified staff.Students will be provided an opportunity to earn credits during their tenure at ALTS Program. They must complete the 135 hours for a new course and demonstrate mastery of a recovery course.

Coursework in which the students are enrolled at time of LTS will count towards the hours
needed to complete the credit. Generally, EOC courses will not be offered unless there are mitigating circumstances and the course is approved by the principal with consultation by the sending school. Students will be assigned EOC courses ONLY at the discretion of the administration.

EOC scores will return to the student’s home high school. Counseling will be a component of the day for all students; this could be individual, group, class meetings, or skill building lessons.
The ALTS Program will receive supplies from South Providence School. No CHS instructional

money will be spent for the program unless is it specifically for a CHS student reassigned to the
ALTS Program. ALTS teachers will request materials from the media center giving the media center personnel 24 hours’ notice. Teachers will go to the media center to collect requested materials after students leave for the day. Students will not go to the media center. No dropout prevention grant monies will be used for the program at this time. As opportunities arise, UCPS may complete a request for funding from a grant.

Program Cost:

No extra teacher cost: two South Providence teachers will be working with this program.
No CHS teachers will work with this program; CHS drop-out prevention counselor will work
with any CHS student in the program as will other dropout prevention counselors with their students in their respective schools. No expense to CHS with regard to instructional supplies; all will come through South Providence funding.

Transportation: Additional transportation costs will be minimal since buses run countywide to South Providence on a daily basis. Assistant Principal will work with ALTS Program until the end of the instructional day; after 3:30 pm, CHS will benefit from the assistant principal position.

Student Data:

Previous ALTS data supports the success of the program. In the 2009-2010 school year, 35 of 41 LTS middle school students successfully completed the program. Forty-three of 71 LTS high school students successfully completed the program.

Statutory Compliance:

UCPS is not establishing a new alternative learning program or alternative school. South Providence School (previously Alternative Center for Education) has been in existence since 1994 and the ALTS Program (which is being expanded herein) has been in existence since 2005. The provisions of North Carolina General Statutes § 115C-105.47A are applicable only when a covered program or school is being established.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Petition Update

An online petition is available to sign if you oppose The Academy at Cuthbertson. You may sign anonymously and leave a comment without having your signature or comment displayed publicly.

Thanks to all that have signed and please forward this info to anyone that you feel is interested.

Petition link:

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Statute and Petition

Many of you may be aware that a letter has been sent by a CHS parent to all UCPS Board members and the Executive Director of NC Board of Education. This letter requests evidence of compliance with NCGS § Art. 8 Chapter 115C below. Section 115C-105.47A specifically addresses belief by many that proper procedure has not been followed. The statute section I've included here is lengthy, but please read:


Article 8C.

Local Plans For Alternative Schools/Alternative Learning Programs and Maintaining Safe and Orderly Schools.

§ 115C 105.45. Legislative findings.

The General Assembly finds that all schools should be safe, secure, and orderly. If students are to aim for academic excellence, it is imperative that there is a climate of respect in every school and that every school is free of disruption, drugs, violence, and weapons. All schools must have plans, policies, and procedures for dealing with disorderly and disruptive behavior.

All schools and school units must have effective measures for assisting students who are at risk of academic failure or of engaging in disruptive and disorderly behavior. (1997 443, s. 8.29(r)(1).)

§ 115C 105.46. State Board of Education responsibilities.

In order to implement this Article, the State Board of Education:

(1) Shall adopt guidelines for developing local plans under G.S. 115C 105.47.

(2) Shall provide, in cooperation with the Board of Governors of The University of North Carolina, ongoing technical assistance to the local school administrative units in the development, implementation, and evaluation of their local plans under G.S. 115C 105.47.

(3) May require a local board of education to withhold the salary of any administrator or other employee of a local school administrative unit who delays or refuses to prepare and implement local safe school plans in accordance with G.S. 115C 105.47.

(4) May revoke the certificate of the superintendent, pursuant to G.S. 115C 274(c), for failure to fulfill the superintendent's duties under a local safe school plan.

(5) Shall adopt policies that define who is an at risk student. (1997 443, s. 8.29(r)(1); 1999 397, s. 2; 2000 140, s. 22.)

§ 115C 105.47. Local safe school plans.

(a) Each local board of education shall develop a local school administrative unit safe school plan designed to provide that every school in the local school administrative unit is safe, secure, and orderly, that there is a climate of respect in every school, and that appropriate personal conduct is a priority for all students and all public school personnel. The board shall include parents, the school community, representatives of the community, and others in the development or review of this plan. The plan may be developed by or in conjunction with other committees.

(b) Each plan shall include each of the following components:

(1) Clear statements of the standard of behavior expected of students at different grade levels and of school personnel and clear statements of the consequences that will result from one or more violations of those standards. There shall be a statement of consequences for students under the age of 13 who physically assault and seriously injure a teacher or other individual on school property or at a school sponsored or school related activity. The consequences may include placement in an alternative setting.

(2) A clear statement of the responsibility of the superintendent for coordinating the adoption and the implementation of the plan, evaluating principals' performance regarding school safety, monitoring and evaluating the implementation of safety plans at the school level, and coordinating with local law enforcement and court officials appropriate aspects of implementation of the plan. The statement of responsibility shall provide appropriate disciplinary consequences that may occur if the superintendent fails to carry out these responsibilities. These consequences may include a reprimand in the superintendent's personnel file or withholding of the superintendent's salary, or both.

(3) A clear statement of the responsibility of the school principal for restoring, if necessary, and maintaining a safe, secure, and orderly school environment and of the consequences that may occur if the principal fails to meet that responsibility. The principal's duties shall include exhibiting appropriate leadership for school personnel and students, providing for alternative placements for students who are seriously disruptive, reporting all criminal acts under G.S. 115C 288(g), and providing appropriate disciplinary consequences for disruptive students. The consequences to the principal that may occur shall include a reprimand in the principal's personnel file and disciplinary proceedings under G.S. 115C 325.

(4) Clear statements of the roles of other administrators, teachers, and other school personnel in restoring, if necessary, and maintaining a safe, secure, and orderly school environment.

(5) Procedures for identifying and serving the needs of students who are at risk of academic failure or of engaging in disruptive or disorderly behavior.

(6) Mechanisms for assessing the needs of disruptive and disorderly students and students who are at risk of academic failure, and providing them with services to assist them in achieving academically and in modifying their behavior, and removing them from the classroom when necessary.

(7) Measurable objectives for improving school safety and order.

(8) Measures of the effectiveness of efforts to assist students at risk of academic failure or of engaging in disorderly or disruptive behavior. The measures shall include an analysis of the effectiveness of procedures adopted under G.S. 115C 105.48 for students referred to alternative schools and alternative learning programs.

(9) Professional development clearly matched to the goals and objectives of the plan. This professional development shall include a component to train appropriate school personnel in the management of disruptive or dangerous student behavior. Appropriate school personnel may include, but is not limited to, teachers, teacher assistants, school administrators, bus drivers, school resource officers, school psychologists, and school counselors. The training shall include instruction in positive management of student behavior, effective communication for defusing and deescalating disruptive or dangerous behavior, and safe and appropriate use of seclusion and restraint. The appropriate personnel with priority for the training shall include those staff members who are most likely to be called upon to prevent or address disruptive or dangerous student behavior. Each local board of education shall include in this component of its safe school plan procedures to evaluate the effectiveness of this training in preventing or addressing disruptive or dangerous student behavior. Local boards of education are encouraged to use available sources of discretionary revenue to implement the plan to train personnel in the management of disruptive or dangerous student behavior. Local boards may only be required to implement the behavior management training component of the plan to the extent that funds have been appropriated for this purpose by the General Assembly or by local units of government. By January 1, 2006, local boards of education shall amend their safe school plans to include this training component.

(10) A plan to work effectively with local law enforcement officials and court officials to ensure that schools are safe and laws are enforced.

(11) A plan to provide access to information to the school community, parents, and representatives of the local community on the ongoing implementation of the local plan, monitoring of the local plan, and the integration of educational and other services for students into the total school program.

(12) The name and role description of the person responsible for implementation of the plan.

(13) Direction to school improvement teams within the local school administrative unit to consider the special conditions at their schools and to incorporate into their school improvement plans the appropriate components of the local plan for:

a. maintaining safe and orderly schools; and

b. addressing the needs of students who are at risk of academic failure or who are disruptive or both.

(13a) A clear statement of the services that will be provided to students who are assigned to an alternative school or an alternative learning program.

(14) A clear and detailed statement of the planned use of federal, State, and local funds allocated for at risk students and alternative schools and alternative learning programs.

(15) Any other information the local board considers necessary or appropriate to implement this Article.

A local board may develop its plan under this section by conducting a comprehensive review of its existing policies, plans, statements, and procedures to determine whether they: (i) are effective; (ii) have been updated to address recent changes in the law; (iii) meet the current needs of each school in the local school administrative unit; and (iv) address the components required to be included in the local plan. The board then may consolidate and supplement any previously developed policies, plans, statements, and procedures that the board determines are effective and updated, meet the current needs of each school, and meet the requirements of this subsection.

Once developed, the board shall submit the local plan to the State Board of Education and shall ensure the plan is available and accessible to parents and the school community. The board shall provide annually to the State Board information that demonstrates how the At Risk Student Services/Alternative Schools Funding allotment has been used to (i) prevent academic failure and (ii) promote school safety.

(c) A local board may amend the plan as often as it considers necessary or appropriate. (1997 443, s. 8.29(r)(1); 1999 397, s. 2; 2005 205, s. 4.)

§ 115C 105.47A. Proposals to establish alternative learning programs or alternative schools.

(a) Before establishing any alternative learning program or alternative school, the local board of education shall develop a proposal to implement the program or school that includes all of the following:

(1) The educational and behavioral goals for students assigned to the program or school.

(2) The policies and procedures for the operation of the program or school based on the State Board's standards adopted under G.S. 115C 12(24). The policies and procedures shall address the assignment of students to the program or school.

(3) Identified strategies that will be used to improve student achievement and behavior.

(4) Documentation that similar programs and schools in or out of the State, or both, have demonstrated success in improving the academic achievement and behavior of students assigned to them.

(5) The estimated actual cost of operating the program or school. To the extent practicable, this shall include the cost of:

a. Staffing the program or school with teachers who have at least four years' teaching experience and who have received an overall rating of at least above standard on a formal evaluation and are certified in the areas and grade levels being taught;

b. Providing optimum learning environments, resources and materials, and high quality, ongoing professional development that will ensure students who are placed in the program or school are provided enhanced educational opportunities in order to achieve their full potential;

c. Providing support personnel, including school counselors, psychiatrists, clinical psychologists, social workers, nurses, and other professionals to help students and their families work out complex issues and problems;

d. Maintaining safe and orderly learning environments; and

e. Providing transitional supports for students exiting the program or school and reentering the referring school.

(6) Documented support of school personnel and the community for the implementation of the program or school.

(b) After the local board completes the proposal under subsection (a) of this section, the board shall submit the proposal to the State Board of Education for its review. The State Board shall review the proposal expeditiously and, if appropriate, may offer recommendations to modify the proposal. The local board shall consider any recommendations made by the State Board before implementing the alternative learning program or alternative school. (2005 446, s. 2.)

§ 115C 105.48. Placement of students in alternative schools/alternative learning programs.

(a) Prior to referring a student to an alternative school or an alternative learning program, the referring school shall:

(1) Document the procedures that were used to identify the student as being at risk of academic failure or as being disruptive or disorderly.

(2) Provide the reasons for referring the student to an alternative school or an alternative learning program.

(3) Provide to the alternative school or alternative learning program all relevant student records, including anecdotal information.

(b) When a student is placed in an alternative school or an alternative learning program, the appropriate staff of the alternative school or alternative learning program shall meet to review the records forwarded by the referring school and to determine what support services and intervention strategies are recommended for the student. The parents shall be encouraged to provide input regarding the students' needs. (1999 397, s. 2.)


No response has been received yet. But we can be hopeful that the NC State Board of Education may require interpretation of whether the manner by which the proposed program was presented to UCPS and CHS families is in compliance with the statute.

In an effort to demonstrate, per § 115C 105.47A (a) (6) that there is not “documented support of … the community for the implementation of the program or school.”, I have an online petition available.

This petition in no way assures that we will be acknowledged, nor that it will precipitate any action by UCPS, UC Board of Education, or Mr. Jackson. But is a unifying tool that will demonstrate objection to the proposed Academy at Cuthbertson.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Concerns Shared by Cuthbertson Parents

For those of you just learning about a plan by UCPS to bring ‘The Academy at Cuthbertson’ to CHS:

Many of us only learned of the proposal when info began to circulate among families after seeing metal detectors being brought to CHS. They were told by school personnel that the metal detectors were for South Providence School students. As some parents began to contact CHS, Mr. Jackson was prompted to send out an announcement to confirm that we were indeed receiving new students and details to provide clarification. In his Sunday August 1, 2010 announcement he included that the specifics of this proposal would be presented at UCPS’s Curriculum/Educational Committee meeting on Tuesday August 3, 2010. Those of us that were able to attend were given a better understanding of the program, and Dr. Davis’ intention of using G Wing at CHS.

The issue of locating an alternative learning program on CHS’s campus is a two -pronged issue according to UCPS. First - All students who have committed singular, multiple, or repeat/chronic offenses as defined in UCPS Board of Education Policy Manual (Chapter 4 Sect 4-3b) causing them to become long-term suspended (and qualify) are entered into UCPS’s alternative learning program, no matter the nature or severity of their offense. All students in this program have been housed on South Providence School’s (SPS) campus while suspension is being served. However, they do not become enrolled as SPS students. They remain students of their home school, listed as ‘visiting’ students to SPS, until they can be returned to their home school. Second - SPS is apparently over capacity and unable to accommodate the total number of students entering into this program. The solution arose to identify a number of those students that were the least violent offenders and find seats for them elsewhere. Cuthbertson HS was chosen because we under capacity and located in close proximity to SPS. Per Dr. Davis, this concept has been developed over time and discussed by his staff as far back as April and May of this year. We weren’t given a specific timeline as to when Mr. Jackson was brought in to the discussion, but delivery of his information came to us in the form an E-Newsletter sent out on Sunday August 1, 2010. No CHS parent or CHS committee was informed prior August 1, 2010. The decision to implement this new program conflicts with many procedural and philosophical statements published by UCPS Board of Education, and Cuthbertson High School.

Four main concerns of parents:

• UCPS Board of Education appears to be inconsistent with procedure as defined by policy in their manual which requires a vote by the Board for approval of an Alternative Learning Program -
          Chapter 5-17 states: The Alternative Learning Program of Studies shall be jointly developed by the central office curriculum and instructional staff, regular middle and high school staff, and staff from South Providence. The Alternative Learning Program of Studies will be reviewed, updated, and presented for board approval annually as a part of the High School Program of Studies.

• Cuthbertson High School’s administration appears to have bypassed a critical operational or procedural step in agreeing to allow the installation of this program while not informing or including CHS’s Site-based Management Team -
          CHS website SbMT reference: (These) team(s) are chartered with the authority to guide much of the operational and educational processes of the school. This site-based management approach shifts decision-making from the state, superintendent, and school board to those with a personal, vested interest in this community: our school’s educational staff and parents.

• UCPS Board of Education lists fourteen Core Value principles on their website. The process by which this program has been brought to Cuthbertson conflicts with largely all of the principles stated. I won’t list them all, but two very most compelling:
          a. Leadership - … did not “engage stakeholders” (CHS families)
          b. Customer-Driven Quality (i.e. Student/Stakeholder Focus) - did not “Meet(ing)/exceed(ing) student and other stakeholders’ (e.g., parents, businesses, suppliers, taxpayers) needs and expectations must be a constant focus of the system. Knowing and continually monitoring these needs/expectations (current and emerging) are essential functions at all levels of the organization.

• UCPS Policy Manual Chapter 2, Sect 2-7 Fiscal Management Standards: The superintendent and finance officer will keep the board sufficiently informed regarding the budget through periodic reports and any other appropriate means so that the board can deliberate and evaluate the budget -

          This program serves a very small number (approximately 15) of temporary student members and as such, applying a far-reaching, non-traditional approach that requires four bus trips each day, one additional administrator, and two additional teachers, etc. should have been supported by cost data of all its components, and analysis for comparison to cost of traditional practice of installing a mobile classroom. UCBOE members should request supporting financial data prior to being asked to support any program. And no alternatives were presented. UCPS’s historical and customary solution to over-capacity schools has been to add mobile units. I.E., New Town Elementary School opened in 2007 and installed mobile classrooms in 2009.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Academy at Cuthbertson

The message below was sent to all Cuthberston High School parents that are signed up to receive the CHS electronic newsletter on Sunday August 1, 2010. This communication outlined a new program proposed by UCPS Superintendent Dr. Ed Davis.

I have tried to compile the following details as presented at UCPS Curriculum/Education Committee's 6 PM Meeting on Tuesday August 3, 2010. 

This program was initiated by Dr. Davis and Dr. Mary Ellis, along with collaboration by Dr. Mike Webb (staff members of UCPS). It is designed to identify a number of students that have entered into UCPS's alternate learning program who have been suspended long term, but are not deemed the most severely violent offenders. The program enables these students earn 4 credits (rather than 2 under the previous program structure) while suspended and graduate on time. Previously, long-term suspended students in the altrnate learning program were not categorized by the severity or nature of their offense and all were served at South Providence School campus, even though they are not South Providence School students, and remain students of their home school. Due to over crowding at South Providence School, the idea was hatched to send these not-so-violent students to a school that was under capacity and would have seats available. Cuthbertson High School was chosen because there is an empty wing and hence was the program was named: "The Academy at Cuthbertson". Cuthbertson High Class of 2011's approximately 253 rising seniors had hoped to have this wing designated as their hall, but if Dr. Davis proceeds with this proposed program, approximately 15 students will occupy the entire wing.  

Welcome to CHS Issues

Welcome to CHS Issues. This blog was created to share information about issues with parents and students of the Cuthbertson School community. Our hope is to provide info on important events and efforts being made to resolve issues that affect all Cuthbertson School families. We hope that you will find this information useful. 

Please feel free to share your ideas and comments here. A few guidelines:


- Please be respectful of all who post here

- Confirm info if you post. The rumor mill complicates things and everyone's time is valuable. If you are unsure, post as a question.

Look for announcements about upcoming events and opportunities to actively participate in finding solutions  to problems that are shared by all Cuthbertson School families.