The superintendents for Huntsville, Madison City, and Madison County schools sat down for a candid talk about the successes and challenges in their districts at the State of Schools. Two main sticking points for each superintendent: advanced placement classes and state report cards.
It wasn't just the superintendents who talked about their districts this morning, but students as well. For the first time, this year the program included students who shared how their schools have prepared them for the future.
"Just getting me ready to balance the student-athlete life because they're really rigorous courses. And it's such a fast-paced class that it's similar to the classes in college," said Regina Harris a senior at New Century Technology High School.
Regina Harris is just one of the student representatives at the state of the schools' breakfast Wednesday morning. The students talked about the internship opportunities, clubs and organizations, and advanced placement courses their schools have provided them. Something each superintendent is proud of.
"I'm especially proud of Huntsville City Schools how we have added so many advanced placement courses across our all of our high schools a minimum of 16 per school," said superintendent of Huntsville City Schools Christine Finley.
"About 85% of the kids in Madison City Schools choose to go post-secondary so that's a great track for them to take," said Robby Parker the superintendent of Madison City Schools.
The event held at the Jackson Center at HudsonAlpha saw the superintendents from Huntsville, Madison City, and Madison County come together where they each talked about some of the challenges they face including finances.
"We're house poor. We have built new schools every couple of years for our 20-year existence," said Parker.
Another huge topic: state report cards.
While Madison City Schools received straight A's and Madison County received a B, Huntsville City Schools got an overall C. SuperintendentChristine Finley talked about what the district is doing to turn things around.
"We developed what's called the 'Future Indicators Success'. There are two components to that. We have the accountability piece which is what's measured on the report card, but we also have continued improvement."
The superintendents also addressed the need for mental health care to be provided in the schools and how they’re working to provide students with work experience. They also boasted about the diversity throughout their systems.