A universal masking protocol at Peoria Public Schools buildings was announced at the July 26 Board of Education meeting. Please read the Superintendent's latest message to families following that announcement.
Peoria Public Schools has instituted a device check-out program for Remote Learning. So far, more than 4,000 devices have been delivered to students and families since March 30. NEW AS OF APRIL 14: If you have not requested a device yet, please call the front office your student's school between the hours of 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday. The front office staff will fill out the request form for you.
Formulating a post-high-school-graduation plan is a challenge for Knoxville Center for Student Success (KCSS) juniors and seniors. Many of them already shoulder the burdens of adults, including family responsibilities and full-time employment. Working toward the next step, whether completing FAFSA and applying for college or investigating employment options with opportunities for future growth, can be easily swept aside. KCSS family liaison facilitator Reginald Thomas makes copping a “get the diploma and get out” attitude unacceptable.
This semester KCSS has extended its hours to help students earn high school credits in less time than they might at a traditional high school. Previously, the school day ended at 2:30 p.m. Now, students can arrive as late as lunchtime and stay until 5:45 p.m. or they can arrive at the customary 7:30 a.m. start and work through the longer school day. The three extra hours allow students with scheduling conflicts due to employment and childcare issues to work toward earning their high school diploma. This year eight KCSS students also are enrolled in Woodruff Career and Technical Center (WCTC) programs, enabling them to graduate from high school with employment skills they can use immediately.
Striving 4 Success in Achievement, Attendance, Readiness, and Responsibility has been the motto at the KCSS for the past 11 years now. With over 800 high school graduates and counting, the KCSS continues its tradition as a viable alternative option for students. The building, though smaller than the traditional high schools, allows students to complete all high school requirements in a focused, safe, caring, and clean environment. Mr. Eric Thomas, the proud principal of the KCSS, has been there since day one (back in the summer of 2011) to witness the creation and emergence of a very adaptable yet effective high school program. He credits a diverse yet experienced, committed staff for the success over the years.
One size does not fit all,” was a common refrain this week as 25 Peoria Public Schools students accepted their high school diplomas at the Knoxville Center for Student Success (KCSS) mid-year graduation ceremony. KCSS Principal Eric Thomas told the students, “This ceremony represents a lot of hard work. It represents staying up later, getting up earlier and making an extra effort to graduate.” Thomas noted that KCSS has no assistant principals or deans like traditional high schools, but does have 14 dedicated teachers who make sure the students are completing the credits they need to finish high school. “I am so proud of each of you,” Superintendent Dr. Sharon Desmoulin-Kherat told the students. “It is true that one size does not fit all and if a traditional high school approach work, we will try something else and we will keep trying until we find what works.”
Knoxville Center for Student Success (KCSS) graduated 28 students on December 12. Graduates wore gowns of their home high school – Peoria High School maroon, Richwoods High School green and Manual Academy white and black. KCSS Principal Eric Thomas noted, “These are not just our students. They are students of Peoria High School, Richwoods High School and Manual Academy.”