• From: Cindy Pangborn
    Sent: Sunday, August 23, 2015 9:25:24 PM (UTC-05:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada)
    To: Judy Gafa
    Cc: School Board
    Subject: NHS 

    Dear Judy ,
    I am baffled that you were unaware of the years of argument over acceptance to the NHS at South High School.  Are you telling me you did not receive any of the letters from parents that I did?  I received most of them in my Friday packet.  You have surprised me that you did not meet  with our past two superintendents  or past Principal Dr. Matt Outlaw, about  the discrepancies as I have .  This is unfortunate and is just one more example of why communication is so important among administrators  and Board members. 
    In my past opinion piece to you, I was not starting rumors. I was only stating what I knew first hand from participation with the administrators, teachers and parents. I am sorry that you had not been included in a subject that was at the forefront of South parent discussions.
    There were many modifications to the process during the three years that Matt Outlaw was at South. I have pulled a short synopsis of the notes I have of the discussion points from parents.The adjustments were in each of the following areas:
    Scholarship - No change was made, but there was discussion about raising the minimum grade point average from 3.3 to 3.5. North was discussing the same but there were no changes from either school. The South parents were very vocal about North having lower standards than South as far as grade pointe and teacher review.
    Service and leadership - The area of most concern from the parents and students took a long time to clear up. The major concern was it was mostly how South allowed the faculty council to decide what counted to qualify. It used to be anonymous and the teachers could not collaborate at all. They would have three people judge and one would count something and the next would not, because they did not share the same understanding. Matt changed this so that they had to be at the table together for the review. This was a huge change and helped eliminate a lot of the discrepancies that were upsetting families.
    Character - Faculty would send out a list of the applicants to all teachers of students who were eligible and then the teachers could anonymously submarine a kid that they didn't like. It was a handful of cases, but it was really unfair and teacher bias was very obvious. This was changed I believe in 2013-14 so that any teacher knocking a kid in any way could not be anonymous, they had to include a reason.  According to the parents and teachers I spoke to, this change eliminated the problem.
    A review team was formed to give a second look to any applicant that did not make it, due to not meeting the qualifications in one or two areas. This was to ensure that no errors were made.
    These changes really made a difference, but there still is the perception that the North GPA is not the same.  If the GPA at North has been changed to 3.33 as we have recently been informed of then it needs to be stated on Norths home page. Unfortunately, according to two North parents who registered their junior class students online Thursday and Friday, there is nothing about NHS on the registration form .  I checked the home page for North and I was unable to find out any information on the by-laws of NHS at North. Please check Souths registration because I was told by a member of the Mothers club that there is information on NHS on their Junior and Senior registration forms. I checked Souths home page and it does have information about the grade point requirement .  
    Everything, as far as applications and by-laws for NHS should be linked from the home pages for both high  schools.  All these details will put to rest any perception of unfairness .
    Thank you, Cindy