Straight Talk by Baker Kurrus, May 25, 2015

Friends,

 
Thanks to all who let me know that they are “all in.”  It means a lot to me, and gives me a sense of optimism for our school district.  I have gotten hundreds of enthusiastic responses, and lots of good ideas.  
 
Mr. Marvin Burton, Deputy Superintendent, and I attended all of the traditional graduations at Verizon Arena.  I was unable to attend the graduations at the Accelerated Learning Center and Hamilton Academy, but Mr. Burton did attend.  It was fun and exciting to see the exuberance of students as they received their diplomas.  It was a privilege to share the moments with them.    Many students from all of our schools received scholarships and accolades.  For a great many of our students and their families, the night was a real celebration.
 
Some of our kids from one high school felt like they graduated by “beating the odds.”  I was deeply troubled by the statement.  After the ceremony, I talked to as many students as I could as they were leaving.  Those conversations remain very disturbing to me.  Some said that they felt as if they had to overcome obstacles that were placed in their paths by the community, or by the school itself.  

ARP (ACT Readness Program) offered at Parkview Arts & Science Magnet High School

ARP (ACT Readiness Program) will be offered again this year from June 19 – July 10, 2015 at Parkview Arts & Science Magnet High School. Rising 10-12th grades students who have taken the ACT, PLAN or EXPLORE and wish to improve their score are eligible. The program is offered five days per week from 8:30 am – 1:00 pm. The program reviews subject areas covered on the ACT and gives students extensive test-taking practice. There is no charge for the course.  However, transportation is not provided.

Please fill out the following forms at this link:

Civic Advisory Committee Meeting — May 26, 2015, 5:00 p.m.


LRSD Civic Advisory Committee Meeting 

May 26, 2015

LRSD Administration Building-Student Center

5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

  
Members of the LRSD Civic Advisory Committee will hold a meeting today, Tuesday, May 26, 2015, at  5 p.m.  The meeting will be held in the Student Center at the LRSD Administration Building, 810 W. Markham St.

 

LRSD and LREA Reach Agreement For One-Time Bonus

 In a joint news conference, Little Rock School District Superintendent Baker Kurrus and Little Rock Education Association President Cathy Koehler announced an agreement for a one-time bonus that will be allocated to most district personnel.  Under the agreement, eligible employees will receive $350 by June 19.  The negotiation was required under the agreement between the District and The Little Rock Education Association.

Eligible employees include teachers, school staff, assistant principals, principals and administrative staff with pay grade designations of 65 and under.  

Click on this link to read the complete News Release

Straight Talk by Baker Kurrus

In an effort to promote transparency and to speak directly to LRSD stakeholders about the status and future of the district, Superintendent Baker Kurrus launched a weekly column today, called "Straight Talk."  Highlights from this week's edition include a "where we are" and "where we need to be" perspective, with an invitation to stakeholders to participate in the support of our students, teachers and schools, and to declare that they are "all in."

To read the first article on May 15th, click here:

To email Baker Kurrus, use this email address: Baker.Kurrus@lrsd.org, or use our contact form.

Listing of all "Straight Talk" articles

 

Frau Case Wins Prestigious German Teaching Award

 

Gibbs Magnet School German foreign language teacher Sara Case has been named the 2015 winner of the prestigious Duden Award for Arkansas for her excellence in teaching German.  The American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) gives the Duden Award annually to a teacher in each state K-16! The Duden Award recognizes excellence in teaching and outstanding contributions to the German teaching profession. The announcement of Frau Case’s selection came at the spring meeting of the AATG, Friedrich Gerstäcker Chapter, in Fayetteville last weekend. Frau Case has taught German at Gibbs since August 2001. Teaching German to young children is her “dream” job.

Founded in 1926, the AATG is the only national organization representing German teachers at all levels of instruction. The AATG is dedicated to the advancement and improvement of the teaching of language, literature and culture of the German-speaking countries.  The Duden Publishing Company is the largest German language publisher of dictionaries and other instructional materials.

Photo: Frau Case, center, with 5th Grade German Class

21st Century Community Learning Center Grant Applications

The District intends to submit 21st Century Community Learning Center grant applications for Carver Elementary and Mabelvale Elementary.  The grant applications are due May 28, 2015. The 21st CCLC grant provides funding for out-of-school programming (before school, after school, Saturday, and summer programs) and provides both academic programs and enrichment activities.  Community input is invited.  Please contact Linda Young at linda.young@lrsd.org to share ideas or to volunteer.

ADE Commissioner Johnny Key Appoints Howard “Baker” Kurrus New Superintendent of LRSD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Email Baker.Kurrus@lrsd.org

Howard Baker Kurrus was named the new superintendent of the Little Rock School District today at a press conference held at the district. Kurrus will begin his new role immediately.

Arkansas Department of Education Commissioner Johnny Key appointed Kurrus, a former Little Rock School Board member, to the position. Kurrus replaces Marvin Burton, who served as interim superintendent after Dr. Dexter Suggs resigned recently. Burton will resume his previous role as deputy superintendent.

“Because of his extensive experience creating and leading effective organizations, Mr. Kurrus will be a tremendous asset and resource for the Little Rock School District,” Key said. “As a former school district board member, Mr. Kurrus is dedicated to district. I have the upmost confidence in his ability to lead the district during this time of transition with six schools in academic distress and pending loss of desegregation funds.”serving the students, parents, teachers and administrators in the district during this time of transition with six schools in academic distress and pending loss of desegregation funds.”

“I also want to thank Mr. Burton for his commitment and service to the district and Little Rock community,” Key said. “His willingness to step in and work with me and the ADE team has been of great value.”

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