GPA issue up for vote again

Published 7:51 am Wednesday, March 18, 2009

FRANKLIN—The School Board here will once again tackle the issue of whether to raise grade point average requirements for students participating in extracurricular activities during Thursday night’s school board meeting.

The question was originally raised during a school board meeting last fall about whether the standard — currently a 1.25 GPA — was high enough.

Board members said that although the minimum was above the Virginia High School League’s standard of 1.0, they wondered if it was high enough for Franklin students.

The board then formed a committee of school administrators, teachers and coaches to investigate the issue.

Since then, the committee has presented options that would raise the standards but has been rejected both times.

The latest rejection came in February when the committee presented a proposal that would require students to maintain a 1.75 minimum average GPA.

That recommendation came with stipulations stating that any student who wants to participate in extracurricular activities and has a GPA below 2.0 would have to attend mandatory tutoring sessions. Any student missing one of those required sessions three times or more would automatically be dismissed from team activities or the extracurricular program.

The school board currently requires that students maintain a 1.25 GPA and attend mandatory tutorials or study hall if their average falls below a 3.0 in order to remain eligible.

During that February meeting, interim Superintendent Bev Rabil strongly suggested the committee consult with members of the board before making another presentation in March.

The school board also will recognize several accomplishments during Thursday’s meeting.

“We’ve got a lot of good news to share this week,” said Board Chairman Bill Scarboro.

The board will highlight the JP King Middle School spelling bee, announce a grant from the Franklin Education board and discuss the progress of the newly instituted “Walk In It” program designed to offset the area’s high teen pregnancy rate.

Scarboro said it is not likely that budget concerns will be discussed until more information is gathered.

“I think it is too soon for us to go into detail with that until we find out how much funds we are being appropriated from the city,” he said.

To speak at the board meeting, citizens need to arrive at City Hall, located at 207 W 2nd Ave., before the 7:30 p.m. meeting Thursday.