Blue Ridge, Ga. – The Fannin County Board of Education (BOE) voted unanimously for the Fannin County School System to remain a charter school district.
Fannin County schools officially became a charter school system July, 01, 2015. According to the Georgia Department of Education (GDOE), a charter district must renew their intent and contract with the state every five years.
Deputy Superintendent Betsy Hyde spoke to the BOE, “They (GDOE) asked us if we would amend our charter and say that we would review in 4 years.”
Upon Fannin County looking to obtain AdvancedED accreditation, the Georgia Department of Education asked administration to review their charter application a year early.
AdvancED is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that conducts rigorous, on-site external reviews of schools and school systems. Every five years a school system must participate in a targeted self-reflection process.
The AdvancedED helps to evaluate purpose and direction, governance and leadership, teaching and assessing for learning, resources and support systems, as well as engagement with stakeholders.
The charter renewal as well as the AdvancedEd accreditation are expected to have coinciding site visits to Fannin County Schools.
Hyde explained that during 2015, when Fannin County officially entered into the charter system, the state of Georgia offered three flexibility options for districts to pick from.
The first of these options was Status Quo. Under this option the school system would not be allowed waivers and have limited flexibility on the local level to customize the school learning environment.
The second option presented was the IE2/Strategic Waiver. This gave districts the ability to ask for specific waivers, but did not allow for School Governance Teams (SGT) to be established.
Lastly school systems had the option of becoming a charter district. This option did not restrict waivers and required the formation of SGT. With this option Fannin County would be provided more flexibility in exchange for maintaining at or above state levels in reviews.
“One of the things that we do in our system is we had to have waivers for instance to do block scheduling, class size, different things like that,” Hyde said explaining the benefits of being a charter district.
The decision to initially become a charter school system was not one that was taken lightly, Hyde explained that countless hours of research went into the decision, including speaking with other charter systems and visiting different districts.
Some of the advantages to being a charter district include flexibility to innovate educational opportunities, financial savings from waivers, and possible additional funding in Quality Basic Education (QBE) if appropriated.
One of the outstanding characteristics is the creation of SGT within each of the Fannin County schools. The first SGT was established in June of 2015. These teams, comprised of 7 members, each meet on a regular basis and include school system faculty as well as parents.
Hyde explained the role of SGT more in depth,”Student Government Teams kind of help us distribute our leadership instead of you all being the only board in the whole system. You all are still over the whole system, but this gives some government back to the schools.”
BOE Chair Lewis Deweese admitted to being skeptical of the formation of SGT in the beginning but said of his feelings now, “I think what we’ve really created are some advocates for public education.”
Before taking vote, board member Terry Bramlett questioned, “Whenever we chose to become a charter system it seemed to be the fairer choice of offering the most flexible options and the greatest opportunity for our students. Would you agree that that’s still the case?”
Hyde replied that she still felt very strongly that being a charter system is the best option for Fannin County and added that it also allows the school system a wider range of options as future needs within the district arise.
The BOE took the first step in renewing its contract to stay a charter district by passing a resolution updating their procedures. While there are still many steps to take before this renewal is official, administration is confident in their choice and ability to continue with charter district status.
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Blue Ridge Elementary wants to give a “Big Bear Hug” to FCHS Construction Class and their teacher Daniel Stewart, for making our idea come to life! Blue Ridge Elementary requested that a structure be built for our growing population of students with sensory needs.
We needed a structure that could withhold special swings designed for sensory purposes and FCHS students delivered! The structure not only serves a functional purpose within the room but reflects great craftsmanship. Our sensory room is a vital part of our students’ schedules. This room offers students with specific processing disorders and needs a place to take a break or calm down throughout their day.
Congratulations to Ramtin Doroodchi from Fannin County High School (FCHS.) Ramtin has completed the Engineering Pathway at FCHS and passed the NOCTI certification test in Pre-Engineering/Engineering Technology. Ramtin scored 16 points higher than the national average on the exam! Ramtin is currently serving as the President of the FCHS Technology Student Association (TSA.) At the Fall Leadership Conference in Jekyll Island, Ramtin accepted the White Star Chapter Certificate for increasing the TSA membership at FCHS by 17% over last year.
Ramtin has applied to Johns Hopkins University and Georgia Tech, and he plans to pursue a degree in Biomedical Engineering.
Bubba Gibbs, Engineering Teacher and TSA Advisor: “It has been a pleasure working with Ramtin in and out of the classroom over the past four years. Ramtin has been an exemplary student in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM), demonstrating an ability to learn and create in the technical world. Ramtin has prepared himself well to pursue a career in the field of technology.”
Fannin County High School Family Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) collected school supplies during the month of October to send to those who were affected by Hurricane Michael. Many members of the community, along with students at FCHS, collected over 5,000 items to send to Bay County, Florida. Some of the items collected include over 200 backpacks, more than 800 pencils, 167 notebooks, and almost 200 packs of lined paper. We also sent crayons, glue, calculators, markers, index cards, disinfectant wipes, dry erase markers, and more!
Cady Finley, 10th-grade FCCLA Officer and leader of this initiative, stated that, “It’s amazing to see how our students and community are willing to come together and collect items to make a big difference in the lives of those who have lost everything.” Cady and her mother drove a U-haul trailer to Bay County, Florida the first week of November to deliver the school supplies. The FCHS FCCLA chapter would like to thank all of the community members who purchased items for donation.
Fannin County High will host 9 th Grade Parent Night on Tuesday, October 9, 2018, starting at 6:00 p.m. in
the cafeteria. Parents and students will rotate through three 20 minutes sessions. One session focuses
on Being Successful in High School, presented by Mr. Erik Cioffi, Principal. He will review the FLEX period,
expectations, grades, balancing school and social life, along with opportunities to become involved at
CTAE Director, Patti DuBois and 9 th Grade Counselor, Jennifer Walker will conduct a session on “College
and Career Academy-Pathways to Follow.” They will focus on Career Pathways and certifications offered
at Fannin County High School, along with preparing for post-secondary options during 9 th grade year.
The third session will be “Technology 101 for Parents” with Fannin County High School Academic Coach,
Amy Williams. This session will present information on the technology being utilized by students in all
classes with an emphasis on the math technology. Parents will have the opportunity to join a “Google
Classroom” and sign up for Infinite Campus. Also, information will be provided on math resources available
“We are excited about the opportunity to provide support to 9 th graders and their parents during this special
informative session,” stated Erik Cioffi. “The 9 th grade year lays a foundation for high school and we are
committed to providing information and support to all students in order to be successful” Mr. Cioffi added.
For additional information, please contact the school at 706-632-2081.
After the coin toss, Fannin County High School Rebels received the kick off. The Union County Panthers defense shut the Fannin Rebels offense down immediately and seemed to set the tone for the rest of the game. Rebels didn’t cross the 50-yard line into Panther territory before having to give possession back to the Panthers.
In the Panthers first possession, they made quick work of crossing the 50-yard line into Rebel territory. The Panthers were able to move the ball for a new first down. It didn’t take long for the Panthers to be up 14-0 over the Rebels in the first quarter.
Panthers defense was determined to hold their lead by not allowing the Rebels offense into Panther territory. No matter what moves the Rebels made, the Panthers defense was there to shut it down.
With only seconds remaining in the first half, the Rebels had possession deep in Panther territory. The Rebels had the Panthers end zone in sight. #12 Luke Holloway’s pass was intercepted and ran all the way back for a Panther touchdown, smashing whatever hopes the Rebels had of getting a touchdown.
At the end of the first half, the Panthers had found themselves in the Rebels paint, lighting up the scoreboard and leaving Rebels in the dust 35-0. The Rebels may have felt a little stunned by Panthers fast-paced offense and shut-down defense.
The Panthers opened on offense in the second half, nothing had changed as Panthers lit up the scoreboard when a Panther ran downfield into Rebels end zone as they lit up the scoreboard once again. Panther’s increased their lead 42-0.
Unfortunately, Rebels #47 Tate Heaton, was ejected from the game due to a personal foul for what seemed to be shoving a Panther’s player after the touchdown. According to GHSA rules, a player ejected from a game is not allowed to play the following game. So, it’s possible that Heaton will not be playing in Fridays game against Chestatee High School.
With a 42-0 lead in the third quarter, this gave Coach Allison a perfect opportunity to rotate players in the game. After the Panthers made substitutions, the Rebels offense was able to move the ball into Panther territory.
With each possession, the Rebels seemed to get closer to Panthers end zone. It was in the last few seconds of the 3rd quarter, that the Rebels set themselves up for a potential touchdown. The Rebels ended the 3rd quarter on Panthers 1-yard line.
The first play of the 4th quarter, the Rebels finally found the Panthers end zone and on the scoreboard with the extra point, changing the score 42-7. The Panthers answered the Rebels with a touchdown and the extra point making it 49-7.
A Rebel highlight, late in the game, Rebels #15, Chandler Kendall, got an interception and about a 15-yard gain, which gave the Rebels the ball. In the last 4 minutes of the game, both Panthers and Rebels opted to run a ground game. The game ended with the Panthers winning 49-7 on their home turf.
The Fannin Rebels will pick up next weeks game at 7:30 at home against Chestatee High School. Come out to support our Rebels as they play their 4th game of the season. Let’s go Rebels!
Fannin County High School Open House Information
Schools in Fannin County will open on Friday, August 3. Prior to this start date, Fannin County High School (FCHS) will hold two Open House Sessions. The Upperclassmen Open House for 10th – 12th graders will follow the usual format on Thursday, August 2, from 1 to 5 p.m. There will be a special Open House for incoming 9th Graders on Wednesday evening, August 1, from 5 to 7 p.m. All 9th graders and parents are invited and encouraged to participate in this unique and customized opportunity.
For the Ninth Grade Open House on Wednesday, August 1, students and parents are asked to report to the FCHS PAC at 4:45 to receive their fall class schedules from their homeroom teachers. Students and parents will then participate in a “mock day” by attending each class for approximately 20 minutes. Teachers will provide students with a syllabus and expectations for their class.
This 9th Grade Open House will provide our freshmen and their parents the opportunity to learn their way around the school and meet teachers on a more personal basis. If a 9th grader is unable to attend on Wednesday evening, they, of course, can attend the Upperclassmen Open House on Thursday, August 2, from 1 to 5 p.m. However, students will not participate in a “mock day” schedule on Thursday.
For additional information, please contact the school.