• School Theme
    Strategic Plan
    Walter M. Williams High School

    1307 South Church Street.

    Burlington, NC. 27215-4919

    Phone: (336) 570-6161

    Fax: (336) 570-6214



    Walter M.Williams High School offers students many opportunities to be engagedacademically and socially.  There areareas where our students, staff and community are thriving and experiencinggreat success.  There are also a fewareas where we feel we could be even more effective and purposeful in what wedo to help our students be successful. In December, 2011, the Leadership Team at Williams High School decidedto start a Strategic Planning initiative. The members of the team have put in many hours of work determining thecourse of action we will take in our school for at least the 2012/2013 schoolyear, with a plan to continue for the next three to five years. 


    Based onfeedback, the Leadership Team determined sixteen areas to target forimprovement.  In addition to these areas,we added Academic Success as our number one area.  In this booklet, you will find the seventeenareas and information about each.  Pleaseknow that work is still being done on some of these areas and more informationwill be forthcoming as plans progress. If there was a new or updated policyneeded for an area, you will find that information as well.  We hope that you will find this informationhelpful as you partner with us to make our school the best that it can be. 

    Mission Statement:

    Through rigorousacademic standards, forward-thinking instruction and positive interpersonalrelationships, Williams High School is preparing students to thrive in arapidly changing society.

    I.           Academics

    The top priority of ourschool is to increase academic achievement in all areas.  This includes increasing strategies forteaching our English Language Learners (ELL) and our regular educationstudents, increasing the number of Advanced Placement (AP) courses offered,increasing AP/Honors enrollment, increasing the number of students taking APexams, increasing the use of technology driven instruction in our classrooms,making content more rigorous, relevant and engaging to students, and allteachers creating pacing guides that align lessons to prioritized Common Coreand Essential Standards. We will develop data teams (professional learningcommunities) for implementing common and formative assessments to examinestudent needs and improve instructional strategies. We will continue to offer differentiatedprofessional development and will increase our level of teacher input andchoice. We will align our walkthroughs with our academic focus to providefeedback for teachers to use to improve instruction and student learning.Quality instruction and student learning are the driving forces behind what wedo at Williams High School.

    II.           Electronics Use (policy # 4220.4,rule # 8):

    Studentswill be allowed to use electronic devices, including mobile phones, inside the building at times other than instructional times and in locations other thanclassrooms.  Once the bell to dismissstudents from one class to another rings and the student steps outside theclassroom door, he or she will be allowed to use electronic devices, but must discontinueuse before they enter the next classroom door. Due to the fact that students will be allowed to use electronic devicesduring these times, there will be “zero tolerance” for use in a classroom/duringinstructional times.  If s student isfound to be using any unauthorized electronic device inside a classroom, the student will be asked to put the phone away. If the student does not comply or takes the phone out again, the student will receive a discipline referral.


    Dress Code (4220.4, Rule # 2)

    1. Shorts, skirts and dresses must not be higher than the fingertips when a student is extending his or her arms at their side with shoulders relaxed. When wearing pants, skin (including through holes) or undergarments must not be exposed above the fingertips when the student is extending his or her arms at their side with shoulders relaxed. Shorts, skirts, and dresses should not be excessively tight fitting. If a skirt or dress has a slit, the slit must meet the same guidelines (must not be higher than the fingertips when a student is extending his or her arms at their side with shoulders relaxed). Shorts, skirts and pants must be worn at the waist (no sagging).

    2. Shirts/tops must cover the midriff, waist, back and cleavage, and must not be excessively tight fitting or see through. Hoodies and jackets are allowed, but cannot be worn on the head while inside the school building.

    3. Shoes must be worn at all times.  Bedroom slippers/shoes are not allowed.  

    4. Inappropriate apparel such as pajamas or clothing representing drugs, tobacco, alcohol, sex, gangs, violence or are crude, suggestive or divisive in words or pictures may not be worn.

    5. Class shirts or any clothing designed to represent Williams High School or an organization at Williams High School must be approved by Dr. Ferrell before it is sold or worn on school grounds.

    6. Athletic uniforms may not be worn during the instructional day unless approved by administration.

    7. Items not allowed on campus: blankets used as outerwear and other attire that is distracting to the learning environment, items that could be used as a weapon, such as studded bracelets, studded belts, handcuffs, chains (including chains on wallets and hanging chains) and items considered to be gang related (including bandanas).

    8. Items not to be worn inside the building prior to 3:25pm: caps, tams, headgear (other than hair bows and headbands) and sunglasses.


    Note:  Administration reserves the right to make the final decision in regard to appropriate and inappropriate dress as well as what is considered distracting to the learning environment.




    We will take a “zero tolerance” approach with students who are out of compliance.

    • 1st violation – Allow the student the opportunity to correct the dress code, including sending the student home to change and contact  parent

    • 2nd violation – Referral to administration with full day of ISS

    • 3rd violation – Referral to administration with 2 days of ISS minimum

    • After 4 or more violations – Referral to administration with 1 full day of OSS minimum






    IV.           Tardy (policy # 4220.4, rule # 5): Students are expected to be on time for all classes. 

    1st Tardy = Teacher Consequence w/Parent Contact Required
    2nd Tardy = Referral to Administration w/ one full day of ISS
    3rd  Tardy = Referral to Administration w/ 2 Full Days of In School Suspension Minimum
    4th Tardy (and beyond) = Referral to Administration w/Parent Conference Minimum Up to and Including Out of School Suspension (OSS)



    V.           Skipping (policy # 4220.4, rule # 5): Students are expected to attend allclasses.


    1st Skipping Offense:

    On-Campus Occurrence – Referral to Administration w/Consequences of up to (2) two days of ISS and Parent Contact.

    Off-Campus Occurrence – Referral to Administration w/Consequences of up to (2) two days of OSS and Parent Contact.

    2nd Skipping Offense:

    Referral to Administration w/ Consequences given:

    On Campus:

    2nd Offense- 1 Day OSS

    3rd Offense- 2 Days OSS

    4th Offense- Admin. Discretion


    Off Campus:

    2nd Offense- 3 days OSS

    3rd offense- 4 days OSS

    4th Offense- Admin. Discretion


    Note: Seniors caught taking an underclassman off-campus for lunch will lose their off-campus lunch privileges at the discretion of administration, including for the remainder of the academic year.



    VI.           Attendance (policy # 4400.2): Students are expected to attendclasses regularly. 


    The AlamanceBurlington School System policy on attendance will be followed at Williams HighSchool.  You may read this policy in itsentirety on the ABSS website, in the ABSS Student Code of Conduct or in theWilliams High School Student Handbook. Any student who accumulates more than 10 unexcused absences in a classwithin a semester will receive an “F” for the course.  If extenuating circumstances exists, therewill be an appeals process/review available.


    VII.           Non-Compliance (policy #4220.4, rule# 1): Students shall comply with classroom and school rulesand directives at all times while under the authority of school personnel.  Referrals shall be written after the teacherhas exhausted classroom policy, including parent contact, with properdocumentation for non-compliance.  Administrativeaction will be taken and will generally include a minimum of one day of InSchool Suspension (ISS).

    VIII.           Safety and Order (policy # 4220.4,rule #’s 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 & 25): There will be “zero tolerance” for violating these selected rules of theStudent Code of Conduct and students will be referred to administrationimmediately for appropriate action.  ***other rules not specifically listed here will be handled on a case by casebasis by school personnel (including administration as needed).

    IX.           CelebratingStudents:  The staff would like to have all students representedequally.  Students who show a progressiveand positive effort should be recognized. Awards may consist of but not be limited to; nomination for drawings,display student on school webpage, shout-outs in the announcements, studentsname in-front of school, and others as determined by the sub-committeeresponsible for this part of the Strategic Plan.

    X.           Celebrating Staff:  It is the goal of WHS to welcome allnew teachers to an environment that is conducive to their success both insideand outside of the classroom.   Newteachers will be provided an orientation to help them learn the “William’sway”.  Based on content areas, newteachers will be provided with a mentor who can formally and informally meet todiscuss concerns as well as progress.  Encouragingnew teachers and current staff to get involved in school events above andbeyond normal duties will also be the goal of this sub-committee.  

    XI.           Grounds andBuilding Appearance:  Student ownership in the beautification and improvement of William’s grounds and appearance has beendiscussed.  It will be the goal of thissub-committee to continue to look for and implement ways to make the appearanceof our school a priority and information will be announced periodically to getthe entire school community involved in this effort.

    XII.           Duties &Events:We believe that students like to see faculty and staff in attendance at afterschool events such as performing arts and athletic events.  All faculty and staff will be required toattend a minimum of three events during the academic year and thissub-committee will work to set up a rotating schedule that is fair and equitableto all.  They will also continue todiscuss and look for ways to involve all faculty and staff in events outsidethe regular school day.

    XIII.           Open House: This sub-committee will be responsible for planning OpenHouse, considering factors such as overlap with the middle school Open House,orientation for rising 9th grade students and families and the typesof information that will be shared.


    XIV. Face-to-Face: This sub-committee will work to streamline the Face-to-Faceconference days and take into account the distribution of Report Cards and/orProgress Reports so that parents can speak with teachers after they have beensent out.


    XV.           Online Learning: Thissub-committee will work to make online learning opportunities available tostudents for the purpose of credit recovery and first time classes throughe2020, North Carolina Virtual Public Schools (VPS) and/or other onlineresources. If a class is offered at WHS, students may not take it online unlessis it credit recovery.  The decision touse E2020, VPS or some other option will be on a case by case basis.  All classes will have very definite cut-offdates which will be set in conjunction with the Online Facilitator andcommunicated to the school community. These course options may help reducedropout rates, by providing students with an alternative option for creditrecovery as well as allow students to take classes they might not otherwisehave access to. 



    XVI.           Reaching OurBoys:This sub-committee will work to identify male students considered “at risk” offailure in our school due to behavior, attendance and/or academic performance.  The goal will be to also identify staff andcommunity members who can work with and mentor these students in an effort toallow them to experience success and possibly change the path that they are currently on and re-engage them in school. In addition, many of our students will be exposed to classrooms whereCapturing Kids’ Hearts will be implemented.

    XVII.           Crisis TeamPlanning: This sub-committee will work to be sure we have a detailedplan in place for handling any emergency situation that might arise before,during or after the instructional day. 


    ***Any questions or comments in reference to the Strategic Plan should be directed to Alicia Curtis, Leadership Team Chairperson at 336.570.6161 or Alicia_curtis@abss.k12.nc.us


    For a printable version of this document, please click HERE.