Students' return and wellness report discussed at PRC school board meeting


Alan Lumpkin addressing the board.

As the school year rapidly approaches, Pearl River Central School board discussed how they are preparing for the students’ return, at Monday’s meeting.

“The summer is halfway over, home stretch of summer vacation but as you know in the school business it's never really summer vacation so to speak,” superintendent Alan Lumpkin said.

Lumpkin went on to explain several summer projects wrapping up on the different PRC campuses, as well as the transition, the district underwent bringing maintenance in house this month.

“On July 1st, we made our maintenance, grounds, and custodial transition,” Lumpkin said. “It was a very smooth transition and we’re very excited about those partnerships as we move forward.”

Important upcoming dates were also presented during the Superintendent's report, such as the new teacher orientation on Aug 1st, and the return of all PRC faculty on Aug 3rd. Pearl River Central students will return to school on Aug 9th.

“We always try to make it a big deal to return to school at PRC, so we’re looking forward to that and seeing our students back in school,” Lumpkin said. “I have seen a few out and about in the community over the summer; some can’t wait to come back, and of course some want a couple extra days, but for the most part our students are looking forward to coming back to school at PRC.”

Lumpkin also discussed the annual community prayer walk held on the PRC campuses. This is a community wide event held at the start of the new school year where community members, families, and churches walk through the three Pearl River Central campuses praying for the district, the students, the faculty and the staff at PRC. The community prayer walk will be held August 2nd.

“It’s an important part of our process as we begin preparing for the new school year and our community lifts our district up in prayer.” Lumpkin said.

Next, PRC Professional Development Director, Kim Alford, presented the Annual Wellness Report for the district to the school board. To support the relationship between student health and academic achievement, the 2007 Mississippi Public School Accountability Standards and the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004 requires each local school to establish a local school wellness policy. This policy includes requirements such as: goals for nutrition education, physical activity, and other school-based activities that are designed to promote student wellness in a manner that the local education agency determines is appropriate; ways of measuring how well the school wellness policy is being implemented, including designation of one or more persons at each school with operational responsibility for ensuring that the school is meeting the policy.

Alford started by highlighting the district's strengths and achievements this past school year. Among those were the grants awarded to the district including a Blue Cross Blue Shield Project Fit America grant awarded to PRC Upper Elementary and the Mississippi Healthcare Alliance CPR grant awarded to PRC high school --which provides all the CPR supplies for the school. Some other strengths mentioned were the community wide events hosted by the school district including the family health fairs and a new event, Fall Fitness, which was very successful.

The report also highlighted some areas of improvement including a focus on better implementing new legislation such as the anti-bullying regulations and making sure all faculty and students are informed and aware of the impact. Another area the district would like to improve on was the increase of fundraising efforts for the PRC elementary playground equipment.

Other notable items on the agenda included the recognition of new PRC faculty. The board also unanimously voted to approve the 2017-2018 school board budget of $22,587,206.00.

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