Monday, August 20, 2012

The Horsey Set/More Views on William Combs

For those who wanted to learn more about the new equestrian program at Florence High School, here's some interesting info from a knowledgeable supporter:

As far as we know, this is the first equestrian team in Alabama. The land and facilities and some funds were donated to the school for this purpose. We did purchase two horses and are paying a teacher a small stipend for the extra hours devoted to equestrian training. It has generated a vast amount of excitement from the students.

While the rest of the state did have quite a challenge financially, Florence did not participate in pro-ration. We absorbed our cuts through attrition and were able to keep hiring teachers because of the fantastic financial support we receive from the City of Florence. County schools and other less-stable cities did not have that luxury.

It is simply not possible to hire "more teachers instead of horses" as some are claiming. Teachers can ONLY be hired using money the state and feds give us for teachers. Virtually every dollar we received is earmarked for a specific purpose. We had extra money devoted to expansion of sports programs (and could ONLY, by law, be used for that) and decided to go with this exciting program.


Two diverse opinions on former Hibbett Middle School principal William Combs:

I-Now is a database. The GUI isn't difficult, but it is not intuitive to most users. What amazes me is that this man was either stupid, lazy, egotistical, unable to delegate tasks or a combination of those things. Those aren't qualities that we need in our school's leadership. I am glad he is gone, we need more things like I-Now to test our educators intelligence, integrity, and ability.


Please understand my passion for the subject and pardon me for saying so, but the article re: Combs was, at best, tacky.  What your source showed, intentional, or not, is the HUGE lack of support for school teachers and administrators....from their own ranks. Mr. Combs was...IS...a professional. Ask yourself this: IF what your source claims is true, what made him think he had nowhere to turn for help?

Oh, yeah....the new policy re: out of district enrollment hit Mr. Combs REALLY hard.  He has two (2) 'special needs' children that were formerly enrolled in FCS.  The new policy forced him to choose a less ideal alternative for their education.

As for help, it would seem every other principal in Lauderdale, Colbert, and Franklin Counties did learn to navigate the new system. Our use of the word "funny" simply referred to the stereotype that men don't like to ask directions. Obviously many male educators did either ask for help with iNow or they learned on their own. We understand that there is also an iNow wiki site with tutorials available to all Alabama schools.

The writer of our second comment referred us to Mr. Combs' Facebook page. It seems that as of two years ago the former principal acquired three step-children. We don't know anything of this new enrollment policy, but would be glad to hear from those who do.

We also wish Mr. Combs the best in whatever new endeavor he chooses.


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