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State Conference To Evaluate Reinvention of Senior Year Experience For West Virginia High School Students

October 04, 2002

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – State leaders in education, government and business will conduct an in-depth discussion on the reinvention of the final year of high school and the transition to college, work and adulthood within West Virginia during “Strengthening the Senior Year: The West Virginia Conference on the Senior Year,” Oct. 13-14, 2002, at Charleston’s Embassy Suites hotel.  

The conference, hosted by the West Virginia Department of Education and Marshall University, follows the lead of the Commission on the High School Senior Year, which recently completed a two-year study that effectively laid the groundwork for reforming the high school experience. Established in June 2000 by the U.S. Department of Education, the national commission brought together educators, experts, students and others to conduct an in-depth analysis of the final year of high school and the transition to college, work and adulthood.  

“The West Virginia Department of Education is excited to be co-sponsoring ‘Strengthening the Senior Year’ with Marshall University. This is our first comprehensive discussion focusing on the importance of a student’s last year in high school,” said State Superintendent of Schools David Stewart. “Nationwide the senior year has been identified as a weak link. We want to make sure our kids are challenged and prepared for the future.”  

Featured speakers for the conference include Maryland educator Harry J. Cook, a member of the National Commission on the High School Senior Year; Dr. Gene Bottoms, Senior Vice President, Southern Regional Education Board; and, Janis Somerville, staff officer, National Association of System Heads and analytical contributor to the National Commission on the High School Senior Year’s recent study.  

“A broad goal of the National Commission on the High School Senior Year was the establishment of partnerships among public and private sectors and secondary and post-secondary education,” Marshall President Dan Angel said. “Marshall University is pleased to partner in this effort, bringing West Virginia’s education stakeholders together to discuss the continuing enhancement of educational opportunities for West Virginia’s high school students.”  

The conference begins at 5 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 13, with an opening session featuring State Superintendent of Schools David Stewart, and concludes at 3:30 p.m., Monday, Oct. 14. For more information on the National Commission of the High School Senior Year, visit the Commission’s Web site at www.commissiononthesenioryear.org/.

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