FORT VALLEY -- The two middle schools in Peach County will have separate sports teams this year, despite earlier concerns about a lack of coaches and players.
Fort Valley and Byron middle schools will have enough personnel for their own sports teams, including football, Superintendent Joe Ann Denning said Tuesday during a Board of Education work session.
The teams merged last school year after the Bibb County league, which Fort Valley was part of, decided to play only within its school district, leaving Fort Valley without opponents. In January, the Central Georgia Middle School Athletic League approved Fort Valleys participation, meaning the two sports teams could separate this year.
Still, officials were mulling whether to request that the two teams -- especially football -- remain merged due to participation concerns.
But enough people have stepped forward, Denning said.
Additionally, coaches have obtained their commercial drivers licenses and can transport players to away games. This helps cut costs and is one reason why both schools were able to have teams.
One exception is the middle school track team, which has ran as a merged team for years, she said.
So, for another year were good to go with middle school sports as is, she said, but its something were always going to have to watch.
Board members are reviewing changes to the districts policy for awarding credits. Like other districts in the area, Peach County is changing its policy to match newly revised state rules, said Gail Swain, district director of grants and administrative services.
One of the biggest changes is a new policy allowing students to test out of courses. Students can earn course credit by making an above average score on the end-of-course test -- before taking the class. A student can test out of three classes that way, Swain said.
If they do not meet the exams exceeds level, students will have to take the class. Board members will review the new policy for 30 days before voting on it.
Career, Technical and Agricultural Education
The district has received a $35,750 federal grant for its Career, Technical and Agricultural Education program at Peach County High School. The grant is aimed at helping those programs improve, said Jason Flanders, assistant principal and CTAE director at Peach County High School.
Due to cuts under sequestration, the grant amount has decreased by nearly $7,000 compared to last year, he said. Still, the school is planning to boost its program this year by getting four agriculture programs industry certified among other improvement plans, Flanders said.
Our CTAE programs really are helping our students to achieve, he said.
To contact writer Jenna Mink, call 256-9751.