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Students, parents brace for LEAP tests; infusion of kindergarteners expected to boost enrollment

The E.P. Harney Spirit of Excellence school board held a quick and upbeat monthly meeting on March 5.

In her CEO’s report, Eileen Williams updated the board on Harney happenings, including preparations for the upcoming LEAP/iLEAP tests. Teachers all received a binder of test-taking strategies to share with students and parents. Harney has already held two meetings for parents to inform them of the testing schedule and expectations. A third meeting is scheduled for March 13 at 6 p.m.

Representatives from Harney attended the Urban League school fair March 3 to recruit applicants. According to Williams the event “went very well and was well-attended.” Harney will be following up with families who expressed interest in applying to Harney.

In addition, Harney will hold an open house March 10 from 10 a.m. to noon. The event is an opportunity for the public to see inside the school, talk with students and teachers, and learn about the Harney experience. The event is free and open to anyone interested in applying to Harney.

The enrollment at Harney as of Feb. 1 was 363, a drop of three from Oct. 1. Williams said Harney is looking to enroll 60 to 70 new students for next year. And ideally, she said, about 50 of those will be kindergarteners.

A report on the school’s finances was postponed until the next board meeting because the chief financial officer was absent.

With three community members in attendance, the meeting ended at 6:30 p.m. In addition to Williams, board members present included Norma Dixon Monroe, Jesse Hills, Clinton Smith, and Charles Southall III. Arthur Williams Jr. and Ashton Ryan were absent.

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