T he POSTAL CUSTOMER King George Volume 38, Number 8 helping you relate to your community Wednesday, February 19, 2014 50 Cents King George recognized on state’s Advanced Placement Honor Roll Governor McAuliffe cites Virginia as 3rd in nation on AP tests Phyllis Cook The King George school division was recognized by the College Board last week as being one of only six public school divisions in Virginia that made the College Board’s 2014 AP Honor Roll for raising achievement on Advanced Placement (AP) examinations while increasing access to the courses. King George also has the distinction of being one of only three Virginia divisions to be noted by the College Board as having received this honor for multiple years. Making up snow days The other two divisions cited were Manassas Park City Schools and Virginia Beach City Public Schools. The announcement was made by Governor Terry McAuliffe on Feb. 11. In addition to King George and the two mentioned above, the other Virginia divisions rounding out the six on the state’s College Board’s AP honor roll are Falls Church City School District, Henrico County Schools and Montgomery County Public Schools. The College Board also recognized the Catholic Diocese of Richmond as an honor roll district. BENSON COMMENTS In regard to the achievement, Superintendent Rob Benson told The Journal, “We are very pleased to be recognized by the College Board so positively as far as the increased access to AP courses and our students’ achievement.” He added, “The expansion of the King George campus of the Commonwealth Governor’s School, our continued participation in the Chesapeake Bay Governor’s School and a focused effort to encourage all students to access rigorous academic Phyllis Cook SCHEDULING AND MAKEUP Here’s what the state says about school days and hours. Schools in Virginia are required to schedule 180 days of school and have a minimum of 990 hours of school time. After the school year starts and See snow days, page 3 Photo courtesy of Christi Britt Snow removal is a necessary task for members of the King George High School track & field team. But it can be a fun task as well. Qualified Fox athletes will compete on Saturday, in the VHSL 4A North Regional meet at Liberty University. County and school officials to talk budget next week Phyllis Cook The King George Board of Supervisors has set a second budget work session for next Tuesday, Feb. 25, at 5:30 p.m., scheduled in the board room of the Revercomb Administration building. During its first budget session on Feb. 1, Supervisors directed Travis Quesenberry to ask the School Board to provide its budget request, getting agreement for that to take place during this next meeting. Supervisors may also hear from some county department heads during the same session, with Fire & Rescue, Human Resources and a request also coming from the Electoral Board scheduled for a presentation at an upcoming meeting. This week, the School Board is taking public comment on its budget proposal on Monday, and is expected to approve its budget request at next week’s regular meeting on Monday, Feb. 24. Crouch Scheduled for Friday Bond Hearing in Circuit Court From any angle MCAULIFFE MAKES COMPARISONS Gov. McAuliffe noted that Virginia can again boast the nation’s thirdhighest percentage of public high See Honor Roll, page 3 School facilities usage fees increased Playing in the snow King George students found themselves in school this week on Monday on President’s Day, originally scheduled as a holiday for students and staff. That and another makeup day scheduled on March 31 will help increase the instructional time lost so far this school year. It’s obvious why so much school has been lost this year so far. It’s because of snowy or icy roads. King George Superintendent Rob Benson has said that it is never an easy decision to delay or cancel school. Benson has said he pays close attention to reports he gets from other divisions, as well as the county’s Sheriff ’s office when making calls to delay or cancel school. And then there’s the issue with parents and others wondering why school is cancelled when their roads look fine. It often happens that many residential roads are in great shape, at the same time that numerous ‘back roads’ that school buses travel are still icy, with sections in perpetual shade with no sun warming them up to melt slick stretches. Benson has said that Round Hill, Passapatanzy and Tetotum can be particularly problematic. opportunities to include AP courses are primary antecedents to the recognition.” Additional public feedback is possible to the division through a budget blog set up by Superintendent Rob Benson. The division’s budget blog can be accessed from the School Board website’s home page. SCHOOL BOARD OPERATING FUND REQUEST INCREASES AT A GLANCE As provided by Benson, below are the major fund increases proposed for 2014-15 in the School Board’s current budget request under consideration, compared those for 2013-14. Proposed Employee Step Increase, equivalent to 2-percent increase - $535,401 Proposed Employee Cost of Living Allowance, equivalent to 1-percent - $212,757 VRS “fully funded” increase of 2.9 percent - $505,486 VRS year 3 offset of 1-percent $264,720 The King George School Board last week on Feb. 10 took action to approve an amended policy that hikes the costs for use of the school facilities available to some categories of the public, when school is not in session. Some of the usage fees are doubled, depending on the category of users. The new policy is relatively comprehensive, and complicated, with some ambiguity, for use of the interior spaces in school buildings, including auditoriums, gyms, cafeterias/kitchens, libraries and classrooms. It also contains an additional facility to be rented, with the stadium adjacent to King George High School available, which has a separate fee schedule and separate definitions for two categories of users. The complete new policy KG-R can be viewed online at the division’s website in the board packet for the School Board meeting on Feb. 10. The policy is expected to be updated by the division in the policy manual section in the near future, with the former now-obsolete policy still in place on the website as of early this week. PARTNERS IN EDUCATION FOUNDATION At its meeting on Jan. 27 the School See Budget, page 3 See facilities, page 3 Senior Night Richard Leggitt Leona Gaither took “Best in Show” for her project titled “Measuring the Correlation of Force Applied to Bent Knees of Different Angles”. See more about the fair on page 6. Robert Ray Crouch, convicted of defrauding grieving cemetery customers in King George County earlier this year, is scheduled to have a bond hearing Friday before King George Circuit Court Judge J. Martin Bass. Crouch, a resident of King George, has been held in custody since he was sentenced to five years in prison, fined $35,000 and ordered to pay more than $84,000 in restitution for defrauding customers of the former Meadow-Brooke Memorial Gardens cemetery. Crouch has appealed his Leonard Banks Senior Night was a special evening of recognition for King George High School sideline cheerleader Savannah Smith (middle) and her parents. See CROUCH, page 10 Now you can follow local breaking news daily on our website at www.journalpress.com The ONLY credit card you need – a NSWC Federal Credit NSWC Federal Credit Union Visit nswcfcu.org for details. Union Credit Card SPECIAL Promotional Rate %APR at 3.9 through February 28, 2015 for balance transfers made between December 1, 2013 and February 28, 2014 After February 28, 2015 rate will revert to the existing non-variable rate of 9.9% APR or 12.72% APR depending on card product. Rates are current as of November 1, 2013. 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