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Hoke County High School Cites Academic Progress

Posted August 3, 2007

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— For years, Hoke County High School battled poor grades, a lack of certified teachers and not enough funding.

It’s on the state's Turnaround List and is identified as a school that needs improvement. But Hoke school officials said significant changes are underway, and staff members said they are already seeing results.

The percentage of students who scored at or above grade level on the state's End of Course exams tripled in biology and doubled in both history and economics.

One of the things teachers did was offer tutoring sessions after hours to the kids who needed it most.

“For my class, it was 72. If they made below a 72 on a test, then they had to stay for a week of tutoring,” said math teacher Chad Hunt.

The school hired curriculum specialists and coaches to help teachers develop lessons and strategies. And the change isn't just academic. Students have had a change of heart, some say.

“I see a lot of changes in the way the students carry themselves, how they influence others,” said physical education teacher Beth Schmitt.

Success in some areas doesn't mean the school’s fight is, though. Hoke High is still on the state list, and scores for math and English have dropped.

School officials said Disadvantaged Student Supplemental Funding has helped them make some gains this year. Last year, Hoke County's share was $1.7 million, and the system used most of the money to hire 25 new teachers to reduce class size, officials said.

9 Comments

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  • cjump Aug 4, 2007

    At the end of the article comes the key sentence: "Students have had a change of heart."

    The best teachers and teaching strategies are only good if the STUDENTS care about their education. Education is a three-legged stool: the school, the parents and the students; if one of the legs does not work, the stool will fall over. Congrats to the students and staff at Hoke.

    Unfortunately this is something that NCLB (the No Parental Responsibility Act) and the State of North Carolina DPI do not understand. They center too much on the "blame the teacher game".

  • PSPro Aug 4, 2007

    The "Cow" needs to explore more of Hoke County! Yes I agree that there are areas of Hoke that are nasty! And do not forget that a big majority of the residents of Hoke Co. are the fine people of our nation's military, and I have been lucky to serve with some of them at one of the finest Volunteer Fire Departments in our county! But, for the most part it is a great place to live! And I cannot see me living anywhere else. I have lived in many counties in NC including Cumberland, Sampson, Duplin, and Pender. And some people also need to understand that sometimes there are typing mistakes and not grammar errors. But, then again I forgot that only perfect people are online, and making comments on this site!?!? The education problem is not a Hoke Co. thing it is a North Carolina thing! Look at the stats!!

  • Scarecrow Cow Aug 4, 2007

    Hoke County is a stink pit in every possible way.

  • wtliftr Aug 3, 2007

    It concerns me that over half of the posts so far have some sort of grammar error.

  • smcornog Aug 3, 2007

    I think that Hoke County school system is by far the worst I have encountered! The schools ,with exception to the middle schools, are run down and dirty. I had a child in Hoke system and opted out to homeschool because it was a very negative experience for the child and me as a parent. The whole system needs to be overhauled. The illegal activity that goes on while the administration concerns themselves with petty non-sence is shocking to say the least!

  • PSPro Aug 3, 2007

    Hoke County needs another High School. The current Hoke High is over crowed, and wore out! Some body needs to convince them too build another High School.

  • gunnarbiker Aug 3, 2007

    This is good news! I graduated from there in 1989 and it was bad then. Luckily, I wasn't one of the lower kids but I saw my share. Although I haven't been back there in a few years, I still want to see them prosper!

    Go Hoke County High Bucks!

  • fbell Aug 3, 2007

    This is good news for Hoke County. An educated work force, and good schools will be needed for Raeford and Hoke County, which will be soon have another distinction---The Ethanal Center of North Carolina and the Southeast USA.

    NC Viking

  • William Tell Aug 3, 2007

    well, i guess time will tell.I don't want to hear a bunch of "is going to happen, in the process, turning around, etc..." Let's just say, we will see if the school needs to be completely revamped and all new teachers and principals need to be put in place. Good luck.