Stewart Updates School Board on Sheffield to Warren Hybrid Transition

September 11, 2023

RUSSELL, Pa. – Warren County School District Superintendent Amy Stewart updated the Board of Directors on the Sheffield to Warren reconfiguration plan a little more than a week into the school year.

Addressing concerns raised during public comment at Monday’s regular board meeting, Stewart said aside from one issue, students have said “that they have appreciated the chance for a new start.”

“Previous history or the baggage is not known by everybody coming from that smaller environment,” Stewart said. “It’s big enough to be able to find a group that they’re comfortable in. We’ve not seen a large influx of students that are placed in the wrong level of courses.”

Stewart said there was an issue last week with a student being treated inappropriately, but that it was handled immediately.

“We did have an issue with a cheerleader being treated inappropriately by a student and I say a student,” Stewart said. “I could not have been more thrilled with how Mr. (Josh) Vincent (Warren Area High School principal) handled it. I mean, those kids were brought down and immediately addressed. The leaders of the cheerleading squad were appalled. I mean what had happened and it was he couldn’t have handled it any better.”

During the public comment portion of the meeting, Stephanie Snell brought up concerns that she had based on conversations while driving students to school.

“It’s not worth what it’s doing to their mental health,” Snell said. ‘The mental health going on three weeks in. I’ve seen the effects and it’s not just my daughter. I just need you guys to come up with something because it cannot keep going on. We are going to have a crisis, a full-blown crisis.”

Stewart said she didn’t want to be “dismissive” of those concerns, but that students had not, to date, brought them to the attention of teachers or administrators.

“Mrs. (Carrie) Warner (Sheffield guidance counselor) and Mr. Vincent are on the bus every day when the kids leave, asking them how things are going,” Stewart said. “It was actually funny because they actually asked at the end of last week if the kids still wanted them to come out to the bus and they said yes. They like meeting with them and they like just knowing that somebody is checking on them.”

The primary focus of Stewart’s update was on the academic side.

Stewart first offered a breakdown of how Sheffield 9 – 12 students chose to take their classes this year. For the freshman class, who are not eligible for Warren County Career Center courses, 31 of the 33 students opted to participate in the hybrid option (meaning they take their core classes at Warren Area High School in the morning and the remainder of the day at Sheffield). Two of the 33 are taking core classes in the Virtual Academy and the rest at Sheffield.

Of the 36 sophomores, 17 are doing the Warren-Sheffield option, 12 are utilizing the WCCC-WAHS option, two are VA-Sheffield, three are VA-WCCC, and two are all day VA. Fifteen of the 31 juniors are going WAHS-Sheffield, 12 are WCCC-WAHS, two are VA-Sheffield, and two are VA-WCCC.

The senior class is most evenly distributed. Of the 34 seniors, eight chose the WAHS-Sheffield option, eight chose to go VA, seven are going VA-Sheffield, six are WCCC-WAHS, and five are VA-WCCC.

Students also have the opportunity to take higher-level courses, Stewart added.

“We have 19 Sheffield students that are currently taking honors or advanced courses that they would not have been offered at Sheffield,” Stewart said. “This does not include CP (College Preparatory) courses so that number doesn’t even include CP that may or may not have run at Sheffield. Due to not having prerequisite opportunities in prior years, some advanced courses the students were not prepared for. But this preparation this year will make them eligible, you know going forward.”

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