Hall County Board of Education

       Hall County Board of Education held their monthly meeting on Monday Oct. 28 in Gainesville, GA. The meetings consist of the board handling and addressing many school-related issues for the Hall County school system.

       Hall County’s monthly board of education meeting is also open to the entire community of Gainesville. During the meeting, the board discusses many things and/or concerns that are raised by the community such as scheduling, scholarships, student activities, etc. One of the things discussed by the board regarding student activities were school field trips. The board briefly reviewed the field trip approval process while analyzing how it’s effective and what should remain the same. The field trip approval process highlights that all out-of-country field trips need the board’s approval as well as any overnight athletic trips that are more than two nights. Will Schofield, Hall County’s Superintendent said, “These two components of the field trip approval process should remain the same given the extent of the circumstances.”

      On the other hand, this board of education meeting was a bit different given that there was a ceremony included into the meeting. The ceremony during the meeting was for the REACH Class of 2024. The REACH scholarship is a program that helps students to graduate from high school, provide financial support for college, offers soft skills/goal training, opportunities for field trips, etc. This program is the first college scholarship program in Hall County that also provides students with mentors to help them as a guide throughout high school and college. However, these students who receive this scholarship are not even in high school yet.

      The students who receive this scholarship are 8th graders from five different middle schools which are Davis Middle School, East Hall Middle School, North Hall Middle School, Academies of Discovery at South Hall Middle School, and World Language Academy. As 7th graders, many students from these schools apply for the scholarship with the requirements of two teacher recommendations, a completed application package, a REACH interview process, and an essay. However, only six students from the entire process are chosen. Dr. Bird, a REACH scholarship donor said, “All the parents, mentors, staff and faculty, and even the financial support standing in this room are all a community that are trying to help these kids succeed.”

      Nevertheless, the board also covered the implications on scheduling for the 2021-2022 school year. During that school year, Hall County schools will add on a full two days of fall break which will also result in a longer Dec. break for the students. The Dec. break will now consist of two full weeks rather than a week and a few days. The board also touched base on the consideration of school from home being extended to middle schoolers rather than it only being available for high schoolers.

     Hall County continues to conduct their Board of Education meetings every fourth Monday of the month. These meetings are important to the Gainesville community because it helps parents, family, students, and others to stay informed about the school system and their concerns can also be directly addressed.