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December
2017

Eufaula City Schools Recognized for Intentional Preparation for College and Career Readiness

HUNTSVILLE, AL. (December 22, 2017) –Eufaula City Schools (ECS) was recognized by LEAN Frog and the Alabama Association of School Boards (AASB) as an Alabama finalist in the “Tri-State Best K-12 Practices” Contest. ECS Parental Involvement & Information Liaison Mitzi Clayton and ECS board members Otis Hill and Louise Conner accepted a $1,000 cash prize for their school system’s entry at the 2017 AASB Annual Convention.  As a finalist, Eufaula City will compete for the $4,000 grand prize with Alabama co-finalist Muscle Shoals City Schools and co-finalists from Tennessee and Louisiana.

“Eufaula City’s “From Crayons to Careers: Intentional Preparation for College and Career” entry represents a deliberate effort to move from a system of schools to a school system,” said Dr. Sherri Headrick, LEAN Frog Director of Marketing and Personnel. “They developed a systematic approach for what to do, when to do it, and who does it.”

When Superintendent Dr. Elisabeth Davis arrived at Eufaula City, she realized that many things were happening – fast! Department planning and activities were not always coordinated; in some cases they were siloed.  Consequently, she worked with all levels of leadership to align activities system-wide to support the school system’s vision, mission, and values.  This became the birth of the “Crayons to Careers” plan. 

The “Crayons to Careers” plan focuses on spiraling programs from PreK to 12th grade to introduce children early to career options.  For example, students in lower grade levels work in raised beds (provided by an AlProHealth grant through the Barbour County Extension Office), while older students receive training in horticulture at the new greenhouse at Eufaula High School (EHS).  Students are provided time during school hours to explore career paths such as coding, where students in all grade levels receive coding training.

A key aspect of Eufaula City’s plan is community engagement.  Students participate in grade-level community service based on career interests or themes like the Senior Citizen Prom, a joint community service project of the EHS Academies. The plan also has ECS staff shadow local business leaders and public servants to understand “A Day in the Life” of these community members so teachers can better prepare their students for those careers.

"Eufaula City Schools is both thrilled and honored to be selected as an Alabama Finalist for the LEAN Frog ‘Tri-State Best K-12 Practices’ Contest,” remarked Dr. Davis. “This recognition encompasses our system motto, Dream Big...Innovate Often!  We believe we must teach our students how to dream in the elementary grades, and we must equip them with the knowledge and skills to make those dreams a reality as they journey through middle and high school!  Our commitment to a purposeful PreK - 12 exploration of colleges and careers through a variety of avenues provides both students and adults with a wide array of innovative experiences to accomplish their big dreams!" 

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About the “Tri-States Best K-12 Practices” Contest

The “Tri-State’s Best K-12 Practices” Contest recognizes best practices and innovations in Alabama, Tennessee, and Louisiana public schools that impact student achievement and promote effective and efficient use of public resources. Entries are evaluated on three main criteria: creativity, sustainability and impact on students.  Two finalists are selected from Alabama, Tennessee, and Louisiana entries to compete for a grand prize of $4000.00.  The grand prize will be awarded in the spring of 2018 

About LEAN Frog

Headquartered in Huntsville, Ala., LEAN Frog uses Lean Six Sigma thinking, systems, and tools to help school systems maximize their limited available resources to improve student services and outcomes. Our mission is to help public schools succeed through increasing the value they deliver to students, parents and communities while fully engaging employees, reducing costs and building a spirit of continuous improvement.

About the Alabama Association of School Boards (AASB)

Founded in 1949, the mission of the Alabama Association of School Boards is to develop excellent school board leaders through quality training, advocacy and services. The association has enjoyed 100 percent membership of boards of education for many years. It currently serves more than 850 education leaders.