What's Happening in Our Schools

The Etowah County School System has a long tradition of high academic standards and outstanding instructional programs. Fifteen teachers have been Nationally Board Certified, and test scores are among the highest in the state of Alabama. Gifted students in grades 3-6 attend a new state-of-the-art Gifted Center, located at the Ivalee Elementary School. These students spend one full day a week working in accelerated programs, such as robotics and engineering. Many Etowah County students achieve high academic success and accolades, as well as college scholarships to higher institutions. Several students have recently achieved awards in the National Merit Scholarship Program.  
access1On the high school level, students may take any class offered in the state of Alabama through the ACCESS Distance Learning Program. All six high schools participate in web-based and/or interactive video conferencing courses. The ACCESS courses are made available through a state-of-the-art fiber-optic network that allows all students, teachers, and administrators to connect instantly to the many valuable resources available through the Internet. Through all of these exciting programs Etowah County offers every student an engaging and challenging education in a nurturing environment, where each student can reach his or her fullest potential.
AP Checks In addition to distance learning opportunities, many Etowah County students have enrolled in Advanced Placement courses. Currently, 681 students are enrolled in Advanced Placement courses, and there has been a 217% increase in the number of qualifying AP scores in just four years.  In 2013, nineteen students received College Board Advanced Placement awards for qualifying scores on multiple tests. In the spring of 2010, Etowah County Schools partnered with A+ College Ready.  A+ College Ready, a division of the A+ Education Partnership, was created with a 13.2 million dollar, six-year grant from the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) to replicate the highly successful AP training and incentive model developed in Texas.  Twenty schools in the state of Alabama were awarded A+ College Ready grants to implement this initiative, two of which were Etowah County schools:  Hokes Bluff High School and Southside High School.  Each fall, their students received $100 for each qualifying MSE (Math, Science, English) score. In 2013, Gaston, Sardis, and West End High were awarded the A+ College Ready grant as well.   

   To further opportunities for early college credit, the Etowah County School district has partnered with the following four colleges to provide dual enrollment for all students:  University of Alabama (Early College), Gadsden State Community College, Snead State, and Jacksonville State University.   
amsti 1
The Alabama Math Science Technology Initiative (AMSTI) allows students to learn through hands-on approaches and incorporates real-world applications in the classroom. Southside High, Hokes Bluff Middle, and Rainbow Middle, Glencoe Middle, Sardis High School, and West End High School are AMSTI sites. AMSTI allows students to learn through hands-on approaches and incorporates real-world applications into the classroom. Through AMSTI, students develop the math and science skills, along with the knowledge necessary for success in the workforce and postsecondary studies.
21st Tech
 The Etowah County School System is continuing to equip its students and teachers on all grade levels with the most advanced learning resources. Promethean ActivBoards, student response systems, tablet notebooks, iPads, netbooks,  Flip cameras, and InterWrite technologies are among the tools provided in many of the classrooms. Several elementary schools have Promethean ActivBoards in every classroom.  Teachers utilize online instructional tools, such as wikis, podcasts, blogs, and other Web 2.0 resources. Through the exposure to 21st Century classrooms, we are preparing our “digital native” students for a global workforce, rich with diverse thinking skills and technology.
In July 2008, the Etowah County School District updated all district, school, and teacher websites to improve communications with parents and the community. Website visitors may now subscribe to e-alerts on websites of their choice. E-alert subscribers can receive important information regarding everything from school closings to homework assignments. Website visitors may subscribe to any or all e-alerts and be notified via e-mail and/or text message. Over 7000 users currently subscribe to the website.  To further disseminate information to stakeholders, the Etowah County School District has active Facebook and Twitter pages. 
CTEtowah County Schools Career and Technical Education offers students instruction, skills, and leadership training to help prepare them for careers or post-secondary training in career and technical fields. Students have the opportunity to enroll in career and technical classes both at their high schools and the Etowah County Career Technical Center. At all Etowah County high schools, students may enroll in Agriscience, Business Education, and Family and Consumer Science classes. All programs offered at the Etowah County Career Technical Center are business and industry certified. These programs include Drafting Design Technology, Electrical Technology, Automotive Service Technology, Early Childhood Education, Precision Machining Technology, Electronics Technology, Welding Technology, Collision Repair Technology, and Carpentry.  In the fall of 2011, a 21st Century Video Conference Classroom (with tablet netbook mobile lab and Promethean ActivBoard) was installed at the Career Technical Center. 
Through funds provided by a state-wide bond issue, construction was completed in 2009 for a new facility at Hokes Bluff Middle School, a new cafeteria for Glencoe Elementary School, and renovations to the Hokes Bluff Elementary School cafeteria.
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