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BOE addresses virtual learning obstacles

Bailey Hamlin was introduced at the Crenshaw County Board of Education (BOE) meeting Monday night. Hamlin was hired in November using grant money provided by the Alabama Department of Education. She is one of 104 coordinators hired in the state. 

Hamlin visits each school to help combat issues with depression, loneliness, and other issues with students, teachers, and parents related to COVID-19. Bailey said she is getting to know children’s behaviors through working with teachers and with specific forms to identify risk factors. 

A program has been initiated by Hamlin on schoolology, a distance learning site, to help children decompress and relax after texts or other school related anxiety. 

Hamlin dispensed pamphlets introducing another program called PeerHelpers. The program is an evidence-based peer-to-peer prevention and support program. Students who are selected are trained in communication, counseling, conflict resolution and referral skills and implement these skills to help fellow students. More information on this program can be found at www.thriveway.com.

At Monday’s meeting. Superintendent Hawthorne and other board members praised county teachers for doing such a great job with virtual learning during shutdown. He said he was impressed how teachers kept children actively involved during zoom time.

Overcoming obstacles such as WIFI bus access was also discussed. Batteries would die and WIFI would shut down at bus hotspot locations. Battery packs have been purchased to ensure access to WIFI all day from bus hotspots in the future.

Contract for Hawthorne was approved for another 4 years until June 20, 2025, with increased salary.

Personnel approvals:

  • Kim Hall, Brantley, Retirement as of March 1, 2021`
  • Tori Free Sanchez, Luverne, Maternity leave
  • Alex Palamino, Luverne, Resignation