GHEC enrollment still rising

GRANADA — The Granada-Huntley-East Chain School Board heard an update on enrollment numbers from Superintendent Mandy Fletcher on Thursday.

“We’re only in week two but it’s exciting because we’ve seen another increase in enrollment,” she said. “We’ve got over 30 kids who’ve joined us this year. Currently we’re sitting at 304 students in grades K-12.”

Fletcher went on to say that GHEC ended the 2013-14 school year with 189 students.

“In that short span of time, we went from 189 to 304,” she said. “It’s a good thing to focus on and celebrate. We’re doing a lot of good things here.”

Fletcher said there are a lot of people to credit for the amount of work they are putting in to improve the school.

Board member Robert Garry gave credit to staff, saying they must be doing something right, to the agreement of other board members.

“We’ve had some growing pains, all good things to have,” Fletcher said. “We thought we had a good cushion of devices but now we’re short.”

She said GHEC is ordering more Chromebooks and also some more desks because in some classes the school was short. They have switched to using small tables for the time being.

Fletcher said GHEC is making sure teachers have extra support via paraprofessioanls with some of the larger classes.

She also said she is aware enrollment numbers will most likely fluctuate throughout the school year.

Fletcher also talked about an open house that took place at the school on Aug. 29. She said they ordered 600 cookies for it, the most ever, and all of them were gone by the end of the night.

“You might get that one person who eats six or seven of them,” Fletcher said with a laugh, “but this was the most well-attended open house I have seen since we’ve started doing it about four years ago.”

Moving on to other matters, Fletcher spoke briefly about the World’s Best Workforce. The district recently set goals, based on the Strategic Plan, for the 2018-19 school year.

“We have not gotten to the point where we’re happy with our achievement scores so we’re constantly trying to look at data and see where we can improve and what adjustments we need to make,” Fletcher said.

Four goals made for the school year are:

o District will improve literacy and math skills.

o Add more community education opportunities.

o Utilize technology for the enhancement of learning for all students.

In other news, seven people have filed to run for three open seats on the school board. Bryan Nowicki and Amy Maday’s seats are open and both are running again. Troy Jensen’s seat is open and he has chosen not to run. Other candidates include Steve Pierce, Chad Diegnau, Ken Madsen, Brad Mattson and Jay Balcom.

In other action, the board approved the choir and band trip for students in grades 9-12 to Branson, Mo., on March 28-31.