Page 46 - B2B Spring19
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Ron Whitmoyer, Superintendent
The East Helena School District has been as busy as can be the last several months! From the opening of their new- est school, Prickly Pear Elementary, to welcom- ing  rst
and second graders in the community,
“In working with former Superintendent of Helena Public Schools, Jack Copps, we discussed and agreed only to have East Helena provide high school classes to one grade at a time,” explained Whitmoyer.
Whitmoyer also said that only freshmen students would transition into the new high school in August of 2019. He explained that it is
not only good for East Helena to approach the creation of its high school this way, but it allows the Helena School District and Helena High School in particular time to adjust to enrollment changes.
“Certainly, Helena will see declining enrollment, but due to state funding allowances, a three- year average will protect them from sudden declines in funding due to enrollment declines. Helena will have 4 or 5 years to make adjustments to their program just as East Helena will to accommodate the increasing enrollment. Change is certainly hard, but hopefully, the change can be a chance to improve student outcomes in both districts with creative and thoughtful planning over those  ve years,”
said Whitmoyer.
East Helena Schools is currently hiring teachers to teach high school English, Math, History, and Science as well as deciding how to staff class offerings in Health/PE, Art, Music, Business, Agriculture, Finance, Band, Choir and Tech Ed classes. As enrollment increases, Whitmoyer explained that  ve extra classrooms were built onto East Valley Middle School in 2017 to accommodate the school’s expected growth.
“We can leverage the  ve
empty classrooms for the  rst freshmen class of students in East Helena. Those rooms will be just enough space for one year for the freshmen until the high school construction is completed in 2020 which then can hold the freshmen and the sophomores that year,” said Whitmoyer.
Whitmoyer is excited for the new high school to be up and running but also shared his excitement
for East Helena’s School District’s newest elementary school, Prickly Pear. Prickly Pear Elementary is also an addition to the community to help with the ever-growing student population. ■
to getting ready for a Health Center Clinic and planning for East Hele- na’s very own high school. It’s been a very busy time!
The o cial groundbreaking for East Helena’s new high school was held on the evening of Monday, March 18th. The district is working hard to offer a complete high
school experience for students and in recent discussions with East Helena’s School Superintendent, Ron Whitmoyer, he said that they are planning on a homecoming game for Fall 2019 for the freshmen.
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