New superintendent making impact

Published 11:24 am Saturday, September 1, 2012

So far we like what we are seeing from Southampton County Public Schools’ new superintendent, Dr. Alvera Parrish.

She seems to have taken the bull by the horns, implementing changes she believes will help students learn and do better on those all so important Standards of Learning tests. Given annually in Virginia public schools, SOLs make sure students are meeting minimum expectations in core subjects.

When Southampton’s 2,828 students return to school Tuesday, elementary students will go to nine-week grading periods from six-week periods, just like Southampton Middle and High schools.

Middle school students are going to a block schedule — meaning they will no longer have six, 45-minute classes daily. Students will have four, 90-minute periods, taking four classes the first semester and four different classes the second semester.

Parrish believes these are some of the elements that could help students do better.

She should be quite familiar with what it takes.

Hired two years ago as superintendent of Petersburg City Public Schools, Parrish joined the district when none of its seven schools were accredited by the state. In her short time there, three earned the status, while another three reached the level for accreditation.

She achieved it by bringing about change.

Not all are big on change, but it sounds like Parrish has some fairly good ideas. The outcome should be interesting.