Lynchburg Superintendent Reflects on His First Year

Lynchburg, VA - April marks one year since Lynchburg City Schools Superintendent Dr. Scott Brabrand took over at LCS.

It's been a year of ups and downs. Thursday, the superintendent laid them all out on the table, from skyrocketing participation from parents to our classrooms needing a tougher curriculum.

Leaders in education, business, and politics listened closely to the superintendent's scorecard of his own schools at an early morning breakfast. Later, Brabrand talked about the ABCs, Achievement, Behavior and Culture.

"As and Bs are up, the number of honor roll students is up. The number of kids failing with Ds and Fs is down," said Brabrand.

Great news for Achievement. But one look at the numbers shows there's work ahead. Colleges are expecting students to enter with even more advanced courses under their belts. Take William and Mary, which is looking for an average of eight AP classes.

"You just can't have a good GPA; you gotta have a good GPA and be taking rigorous courses," said Dr. Brabrand.

Then there's Behavior. The goal is to decrease suspensions 5% every year - and they're already seeing success. Truancy is down by double digits, thanks to early intervention.

But culture is getting a lot of buzz too. Parent involvement has jumped. Thanks to the Give Me 5 program, 1,000 more parents got involved in the schools just this year.

For School Board Chair Charlie White, culture includes the entire community.

"Throughout the history of this community, taxpayers and business leaders and stakeholders in the community have consistently demanded that public education funding remain a top priority in the budget," said White.

White says, as Lynchburg embarks on this rigorous budget season, financial support will be critical to improving the ABCs in our schools.

"We got the right plan and we are moving in the right direction," said Brabrand.

Brabrand really emphasizes giving all our students hope. He cites study's that say when there's hope in the classroom and hope in the school, those students perform strongest academically.