Belle Hall Elementary School’s mission is to develop skilled, respected, independent seekers of knowledge possessing World Class Skills by providing them rich, diverse, and challenging experiences. The school population of 750 students in Child Development (four-year-olds) through the 5th grade has an enrollment of 79% Caucasian and 21% minority students. Instructional programs include various inclusion-based special education services, fine arts, technology, research projects, guidance groups, Accelerated Reader, chorus, recorder pipes, hand bells, and regular intervention groups for students needing academic assistance. A staff Multi-Tiered Systems of Support team based on a Response to Intervention protocol meets weekly to identify, monitor and support students in need and address any achievement gaps. Students may also participate in Girls On The Run, swimming, tennis, basketball and an after-school Kaleidoscope program among other extracurricular activities. Approximately half of the 3rd through 5th grade students qualify for the school district’s Gifted and Talented program. Opportunities to develop effective Life and Career Characteristics include school-wide participation in monthly charity drives, wellness activities, securing grants (for initiatives such as gardens, recycling and food composting) and our school-wide environmentally-aware Green Team!
Beyond the traditional curriculum, all of our students have access to extra support via a technology lab instructor, literacy specialists, targeted academic intervention tutors and skills-building software programs. Our school setting is a safe and nurturing environment that promotes character development through regularly scheduled guidance classes and a school-wide Positive Behavior and Intervention Supports (PBIS) program. Additionally, numerous initiatives are facilitated by our proactive School Improvement Council and PTA!
Our school assists all students in developing the World Class Skills and Life & Career Characteristics of the Profile of the South Carolina Graduate by emphasizing the acquisition of World Class Knowledge through rigorous academics based on the SC Curriculum Standards. This is evidenced by this report card data which reflects the spring of 2018 grades 3, 4 and 5 SCREADY exam results, 4th and 5th grade SCPASS results and survey feedback from students and parents. During the 2017-18 school year, teachers focused on the critical thinking and problem solving skills of our students by piloting the Bridges math curriculum in kindergarten through 3rd grade. The faculty also continued their professional development with OGAP math assessment and instruction training. As a result, school-wide improvement was seen in the increased percentage of students that met or exceeded their growth target in math according to Spring 2018 Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) results. Communication skills, both written and technological, were targeted by increasing student instruction in Text Dependent Analysis strategies and committing more learning time to adaptive software resources. Digital device usage reports revealed steady gains despite the school-wide need for more electronic equipment.
Accordingly, we must continue efforts to strengthen our instructional core, provide intervention resources to classrooms and increase the number of technological devices. Securing adequate time for teacher planning and professional development remains a primary goal. Our faculty strives to collaborate more within our building across grade levels and through articulation meetings with educators at other schools. Teacher-selected training is encouraged in order to build our instructional capacity and to deliver differentiated support to individual students. Historically, the Belle Hall educational purpose has been to acknowledge all students and enable them to be successful, fulfilled learners. This collective goal continues and its success will certainly be a direct result of our strong school community and spirit.
Mr. Kevin Conklin, Principal
Ms. Sarah Sellars, SIC Chair