Saturday, July 30, 2011

Congratulations, Arkadelphia!

What a week!  As our administrative team was preparing for the return of our teachers on Wednesday, August 3, we received some exciting news from Little Rock.  Each year the Arkansas Department of Education releases the annual school improvement reports and classifies each school according to their most recent test scores.  This year's report arrived a week early!  I am proud to report that all of our schools showed improvement in areas, but there is great cause for celebration at some schools.

While our student achievement data have always indicated high performance as a combined group, we have been challenged by the achievement levels of students in special sub-populations (i.e, minority groups, special education students, low socioeconomic students, etc.)....but that is changing in Arkadelphia!  High expectations for all students is the key improving the achievement level of every child in our school district.

We are especially proud to report that Goza Middle School has been removed from the school improvement list in Arkansas!  This is a tremendous victory for the Goza team (6 years in the making) and I commend their students, faculty and leadership for this EXTRAORDINARY accomplishment.  This announcement proves that data-driven decision making, collaboration, high expectations for all students and clear and focused instruction makes a difference.  Congratulations, Goza!

Our elementary schools also saw increases across the district with Perritt, Central and Peake meeting their targets in one or more areas.  I especially want to congratulate the Central students, faculty and leadership for meeting standards in math and literacy this year...moving them one step further to eliminating any school improvement label for our two primary schools.  Way to go, Team Central!

We will continue to focus on our math and literacy instruction across the district with an emphasis on our End of Course Algebra, Geometry and 11th grade Literacy Exam at AHS.  While we are not where we want to be in all areas with all students - our scores are competitive with districts across the state and we rank as one of the highest achieving districts in south Arkansas.

As we begin this year, I want to personally thank and congratulate our instructional team, students and community for your continued dedication to our schools and students.  I am proud and honored to be your leader.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Babb named Arkadelphia AD

Arkadelphia Public Schools Contact:  Donnie Whitten, (870) 246-1100

OBU’s Babb named Arkadelphia AD
ARKADELPHIA  -  Arkadelphia Public Schools named Chris Babb as Athletic Director on Tuesday night.  Babb currently serves as the external director of alumni at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia.
A graduate of Cabot High School, Babb earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from Ouachita Baptist University in 1999 and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in sports administration from Henderson State University.
“Chris Babb has the vision and energy to take Arkadelphia Athletics to the next level,” said Arkadelphia Superintendent Donnie Whitten.  “He brings administrative experience in athletics, fundraising and public relations, and a positive attitude that will resonate within the Badger community.  We are excited about Chris joining our team!”
Babb spent the last ten years in athletics and development at Ouachita Baptist University.  As director of athletic development, he served as the fundraising liaison for Ouachita Tiger Athletics. His work enabled the university to provide scholarship assistance to intercollegiate athletes and helped support a high-quality, competitive athletic program.
Prior to joining the development team, Babb served as sports information director at OBU for five years. In that role, he was responsible for a variety of administrative and public relations activities that helped advance the athletic program and each individual sport.  In addition, Babb also spent time as an account executive at Arkansas Business Publishing Group in Little Rock.

“I am grateful to the Arkadelphia School District’s board and administration for giving me this opportunity,” said Babb.  “I look forward to working with our coaches as we prepare to help our students grow academically and athletically.  There is a rich history in Arkadelphia, but also great potential for the Badgers.  I am excited about the possibilities that lie ahead for our student-athletes.”

Babb and his wife, Amy, have three children, Carter (6), Millie (4) and Cooper (2 mos).  Carter will be a first grader at Louisa E. Perritt Primary in the fall.  They currently reside in Arkadelphia.
Arkadelphia will compete in the 5A Southwest Conference during the upcoming school year.  The 2011 offerings include:  Football, Basketball, Volleyball, Soccer, Baseball, Softball, Track / Cross Country, Tennis, Swimming, Golf, Cheerleading and Dance.