• News from the Board -- May 4, 2021

    Posted by Jessica Wells on 5/6/2021 4:30:00 PM


    On Tuesday, May 4, 2021 at 6 p.m., the Onslow County Board of Education held a public hearing at the Eastern North Carolina Regional Skills Center in regards to the proposed capital outlay and local current expense budgets for fiscal year 2021-2022. No one signed up to speak at the hearing.  

    At 6:30 p.m. on the same day, the Board held its regular monthly meeting, for which agenda items included: the FY2021-2022 Local Current Expense and Capital Outlay Budgets, the Coastal Carolina Community College Board of Trustee Appointment, and a presentation on the Science of Reading.  

    After a single speaker during the public comment period, the meeting opened with Superintendent Dr. Barry Collins, who presented to the Board the superintendent’s proposed budget for 2021-2022. Dr. Collins recapped OCS Chief Finance Officer Jeff Hollamon’s presentation from the Board’s last meeting, saying that after all requests were prioritized, the proposed budget is $67.5 million for local current expense and $3.8 million for capital outlay. The superintendent’s priorities for this budget remain the same as last year: instruction, safety and security, and mental health. The Board members present unanimously approved both budgets. Next, the budgets will go to the county commissioners for their approval.  

    Next to the podium was Chief Communications Officer Brent Anderson, who presented the recommendation for the district’s Coastal Carolina Community College Board of Trustee appointment. Anderson shared that previous appointee Jeffrey Clark applied for appointment again this year. The Board members present unanimously approved his reappointment.  

    Last on the agenda was a presentation from the district’s Instructional Service department, who shared with the Board information on the Science of Reading initiative and the district’s plans to implement a new reading curriculum. Instruction staff shared that the Science of Reading is a term that means “evidence-based reading instruction practices that address the acquisition of language, phonological and phonemic awareness, phonics and spelling, fluency, vocabulary, oral language, and comprehension that can be differentiated to meet the needs of individual students.” 

    To improve reading instruction in Onslow County, instruction staff said they worked with teachers and educators district wide to select a new ELA curriculum for the county. Core Knowledge Language Arts (CKLA) was selected as the new curriculum, which will be implemented starting in 2021-2022. Instruction staff have a detailed plan for how to train the district’s teachers in the new curriculum and are confident that the coming changes will have a positive impact on reading instruction at OCS.  

    In the superintendent’s closing comments, Dr. Collins reminded everyone that it was Employee Appreciation Week, as well as Teacher Appreciation Day, and thanked OCS employees for all they do.   

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