City leaders share views on schools’ AYP scores

Published 10:22 pm Thursday, August 5, 2010

Alabaster Mayor David Frings and members of the City Council unanimously praised the city’s schools during an Aug. 5 meeting.

The discussion came less than a week after the Shelby County School District announced Thompson High, Thompson Intermediate and Creek View Elementary schools did not achieve their Adequate Yearly Progress goals under the No Child Left Behind program this year.

Frings said he planned to set up a committee composed of city and school officials to develop long- and short-term goals to help support Alabaster’s schools.

“Some goals will have to go into effect pretty quickly,” Frings said. “We want to take a proactive approach. It’s a positive thing to work for the good of our students.”

Members of the Alabaster City Council agreed with Frings’ plan, and said the city’s schools, which are part of the Shelby County School District, were among the best in the state.

“Don’t worry about our schools, they are doing very well,” said Ward 2 Councilman Bob Hicks. “I resent any insinuation that they are not. I take that very personally.”

Ward 1 Councilwoman Sophie Martin said she was “very proud” of the schools, and would work with other city leaders to help improve Alabaster’s education system.

“Our schools are very near and dear to me. I am proud of our staff, our school leaders, our teachers, our students and everyone who works with our schools,” Martin said. “We need to do all we can do to support our schools and teachers.”

Ward 7 Councilman Tommy Ryals, whose two children graduated from Thompson High School, said the AYP scores were misleading, and said he planned to continue promoting Alabaster’s education system.

“We all know we’ve got good schools. It’s a great system,” Ryals said. “We just have to find a way to let everyone else know that.”

In other business, the council:

– Accepted a $75,000 bid from Birmingham-based Bailey and Owens Contractors to replace a concrete bridge atop a basin at the Alabaster wastewater treatment plant.

– Set a public hearing for Oct. 7 to hear citizens’ opinions about a proposed rezoning request of the city’s former Winn-Dixie store off Alabama 119.

The First United Methodist Church of Alabaster is seeking to have the property rezoned to allow the church to move several of its services into the now-vacant store.