Minutes of the April 10th, 2006 meeting of the Smyth County School Board, as approved by the School Board at its May 8th, 2006 meeting

Marion, Virginia
April 10, 2006

The Smyth County School Board met today with the following members present: Jesse Choate, Roger Nipper, Susan Sneed, Charles Doane, Jerry Catron, and Kimberly Clark. The meeting was held at 5:00 P.M., in the school cafeteria at Sugar Grove Combined School, 242 Teas Road, Sugar Grove, Virginia.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve the minutes from the March 13, 2006, school board meeting with the following correction: County School Operating Fund invoices approved for March 13, 2006, totaled $542,503.43 instead of $543,815.53. Minutes from the March 16, 2006, and March 21, 2006, school board meetings were approved as presented.

On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve the agenda as presented.

Pursuant to 2.2-3711 of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act, on motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Doane, the board voted unanimously to convene to the school library for a closed meeting for the purposes of discussing the following specific matters: personnel issues as authorized by 2.2-3711(A)(1) of the Code of Virginia.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to return to the open meeting in the school cafeteria.

WHEREAS, the Smyth County School Board has convened a closed meeting on this date pursuant to an affirmative-recorded vote in accordance with the provision of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act; and

WHEREAS, 2.2-3712(D) of the Code of Virginia requires a certification by this school board that such closed meeting was conducted in conformity with Virginia Law:

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Smyth County School Board, by roll call, hereby certifies that, to the best of each member's knowledge (i) only public business matters lawfully exempted from open meeting requirements by Virginia Law were discussed and (ii) only such public business as were identified in the motion by which the closed meeting was convened were heard, discussed, or considered. VOTE:

Ayes: 6 Nays: 0

Mrs. Hall was absent.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to accept the resignations from Suzanne Archer, Attendance Secretary at Marion Senior High School, resignation effective at the end of this school year; Judy Moose, a special education teacher at Marion Primary School, retirement effective at the end of this school year; Melissa Jones, an instructional aide at Atkins Elementary School, resignation effective immediately; Lisa Rigely, Librarian at Marion Primary School, retirement effective at the end of this school year; and Carolyn Chapman, a special education teacher at Rich Valley Elementary School, resignation effective at the end of this school year.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously not to renew the contract for the 2006-2007 school year for Caleb Kestner, a first grade teacher at Sugar Grove Combined School, due to the change in enrollment. The renewal of the teaching contract for the 2006-2007 school year for Melissa McKinnon, a third grade teacher at Marion Primary School, would be contingent upon the board's receipt of passing scores as indicated by the Virginia Department of Education for either Praxis I or the Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment by June 7, 2006.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to hire Deborah S. Barbrow as a county-wide speech pathologist on an extended contract of 220 days to replace Carol Edmiston and to hire Linda Kelly as the teacher of Family Consumer Science at Marion Senior High School to replace Vicki Henson.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve the following transfers for the 2006-2007 school year: Deanna Crewey, Pre-K Teacher, from Marion Primary School to Chilhowie Elementary School and Mary Lynn Powers, Pre-K Instructional Aide, from Marion Primary School to Chilhowie Elementary School.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted unanimously to employ Mark Frye as the seventh and eighth grade boys' track coach at Northwood Middle School.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve up to a total of 12 work weeks of unpaid leave during any 12-month period for Lila Atwell, a custodian at Marion Middle School, Heather Hayden, a teacher at Marion Primary School, and Shelley Oakes, a teacher at Marion Primary School.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to accept the resignation of Marcus Dunham, a teacher at the Southwestern Virginia Mental Health Institute Education Program, effective at the end of this school year and accept the resignation of Marsha Bays, a special education teacher at Marion Primary School, effective at the end of this school year.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to extend the contract to an eleven-month contract for the 2006-2007 school year for Steve Blevins, Special Education Coordinator.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Doane, the board voted to accept the resignation from Sue Tilson, as principal of Chilhowie Middle School, effective at the end of this school year, and to reassign Mrs. Tilson to an administrative or teaching position with Smyth County Schools. The motion passed with five (5) ayes and one (1) nay.

Mr. Choate welcomed all present for the meeting, and he thanked Dennis Carter, Principal of Sugar Grove Combined School, for the fine meal.

Chilhowie High School had the highest attendance percentage in the high school category for the month of March. Steve Reedy, Principal of Chilhowie High School, introduced Amber Combs, a twelfth grader, for only being absent one day. The school received a certificate and will be retaining the flag from last month.

Sue Tilson, Principal of Chilhowie Middle School, introduced Samantha Santiago, an eighth grader, and Joseph Blevins, an eighth grader, for being co-winners of the Hungry Mother Art Contest. Chilhowie Middle School had the highest attendance percentage in the middle school category. The school received a certificate and a flag to fly at the school.

Chilhowie Elementary School had the highest attendance percentage in the elementary category. Mike Sturgill, Principal of Chilhowie Elementary School, introduced Brady McVey, a fourth grader, for having perfect attendance this year. The school received a certificate and a flag to fly at the school.

Marion Senior High School had the most improved attendance percentage for the month of March. Pat Farmer, Guidance Counselor at Marion Senior High School, introduced Shawn Steiner, an eleventh grader, for his improvement in attendance. The school received a certificate and a flag to fly at the school.

There were no other students or staff present to be recognized for outstanding accomplishments.

No citizens were present to speak during citizens' time.

The board heard a report on the 21st Century Learning Center Grants as presented by Mike Sturgill, Principal of Chilhowie Elementary School. The board also heard reports from each school's grant coordinator. Coordinators present were: Joyce Collins, Atkins Elementary School; Lelia Rash, Chilhowie Elementary School; Janice Phillips, Saltville Elementary School; Mitzi Frye, Saltville Elementary School; and Kimberly Williams, Marion Primary School.

The board considered the school calendar for the 2006-2007 school year as presented by Rick Blevins, Director of Human Resources and Auxiliary Services. On motion by Mr. Doane, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted to approve the school calendar as presented. The motion failed with two (2) ayes, three (3) nays, and one (1) abstained. On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted to approve, as recommended by the superintendent, the school calendar in its entirety with the exception of the Easter break and the schedule for making up days missed due to inclement weather. The board requested for the calendar committee to look at this again and bring it back to the next board meeting. The motion passed with four (4) ayes, one (1) nay, and one (1) abstained.

The board considered bids for repair of the Marion Intermediate School Cafeteria floor as presented by Rick Blevins. On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mrs. Clark, the board voted unanimously to approve the lowest bid in the amount of $25,000.00 from Smyth Paint and Decorating, Marion, Virginia.

Rick Blevins made a recommendation to the board for the School Nutrition Program to join the Southern Appalachian Mountain Food Buying Co-op. On motion by Mr. Doane, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve this request.

The board considered a policy change in 5.36 Travel Allowances for employees as presented by Rick Blevins. On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve the change as presented.

The board received information concerning the Employee Health Insurance Committee for 2006-2007 as presented by Rick Blevins.

The board heard a report on the Career and Technology Annual Plan as presented by Ed Worley, Director of Vocational Education. On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted unanimously to approve the plan in the amount of $107,528.31 as presented.

The board considered a request for the use of a school bus to provide transportation for upcoming 9th grade students from Marion Senior High School to attend a computer camp at Wytheville Community College (2006 Tech Quest Academy) on June 26, 27, 28, and 29, 2006. On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted unanimously to approve this request.

The board considered requests for two (2) additional field trips at Marion Primary School for the 2005-2006 school year (one through special invitation and the other one a result of a writing activity begun after Christmas). On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve these requests.

The board reviewed schedules for high school baccalaureates. The schedules are as follows as recommended by the principals:

The board reviewed schedules for high school graduations. The schedules are as follows as recommended by the principals:

The board heard a request to increase funding of the National Teachers Certification Program as presented by Dr. Mike Robinson, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction. On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to pay $500.00 of the cost of the certification starting with the 2006-2007 school year applicants.

The board considered a new board meeting agenda format as recommended by the recent Efficiency Review Team Report. The board requested that the superintendent work on this format regarding the closed meeting and bring back for the May board meeting.

The board heard a report from the budget committee which met on Thursday, April 6, 2006, as presented by the superintendent. He reported that they were still working on salary scales and salaries.

The board considered a request for financial help in sending the Destination Imagination Team from Northwood Middle School (2 teams) and Marion Middle School (1 team) to state competition in Richmond on April 21 and 22, 2006. On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mrs. Clark, the board voted unanimously to fund one-half the cost to send these teams to Richmond.

The board considered a revision of the Certificate for Retirement of Employees. On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve the revised certificate as presented.

Elizabeth Roberts, Business Decision Support Analyst, reviewed revenue, expenditures, and cash flow figures through the month of March, 2006.

Mr. Sullivan reminded the board to plan on leaving the school board office at 3:30 P.M., on Tuesday, April 25, 2006, to travel to Hillsville, Virginia, for the 2006 Southwest Regional VSBA meeting.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve the March payroll, paid March 31, 2006, checks #52433-52912, in the amount of $2,919,235.21.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mrs. Clark, the board voted unanimously to approve and pay current invoices in the amount of $462,132.79 from the County School Operating Fund, the same to be listed in the warrant register.

There were no payments due for April from the County School Debt and Capital Outlay Fund.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve invoices for utility payments made prior to the April 10, 2006, school board meeting in the amount of $70,848.59 from the County School Operating Fund, the same to be listed in the March warrant register.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve payments for textbooks to publishers in the amount of $3,286.89 for the month of March, 2006.

On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to adjourn the meeting.