Changes being made at Hall High School are ‘full STEAM ahead’

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Last week, Little Rock School District (LRSD) Superintendent Michael Poore notified staff and faculty at four schools about reorganization.

Tuesday, he gave an outline of changes Hall High School.

The school is getting a new name: Little Rock Hall STEAM Magnet High School.

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It’s also getting new curriculum and possibly new staff and faculty members.

Poore said it’s ‘full STEAM ahead’ for the school.

“We think we’ve generated an initial framework that allows awesome conversations to blossom after this,” Poore said.

In 2020, it will have curriculum focused on bridging the gap between high school and the work force or college.

“We know that technology changes are on the horizon much quicker than they have been in the past, and our students need to have that foundation so that they’re prepared to go out in the world,” Arkansas Dept. of Education Secretary of Education Johnny Key said.

Key said this change will make the school more attractive to students and parents.

“I think for Little Rock, the importance is we have so many choices for students and that’s what one of the primary elements of this was about, was creating a choice so that students all across the city would want to come to Hall High School,” Key said.

This means 10th, 11th, and 12th graders will have the right to stay at the school or choose another.

“If you’re an incoming ninth grader, we hope this becomes your choice, that it becomes your option. If you say ‘wow, this is where I want to be’ because of these types of programs,” Poore said.

As for employees, they’ll receive a Contract Non-Renewal Letter and may then reapply for positions based on the criteria of the new focus area.

Or, they can apply at other schools in the district.

“First business for us here, is to get our principal selected. We’re going to do that at the end of this month and then we’re going to interview for teaching positions,” Poore said.

Poore said they’ll make decisions based on their new mission, which is to ensure students are ready for the world beyond high school.

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“Everyone will have to apply to come in and say they want to be a part of this magnet, and really show how they’re going to jump in and support this framework,” Poore said.

Poore said open enrollment has been extended for students until January 28.