Minutes of the February 12, 2007 Smyth County School Board Meeting

Marion, Virginia

The Smyth County School Board met today in a regular meeting at 5:00 P.M., in the board meeting room.

CALL TO ORDER

Chairperson Hall called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone.

The roll was called by the clerk, and the following members were present: Laura Hall, Roger Nipper, Jesse Choate, Susan Sneed, Charles Doane, and Jerry Catron. Kimberly Clark was absent.

CLOSED SESSION

Pursuant to § 2.2-3711 of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act, on motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 6-0 vote, a closed meeting was declared for the purpose of discussing the following: personnel issues as authorized by § 2.2-3711(A)(1) of the Code of Virginia.

Dr. Michael Robinson, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction, was present for the closed meeting.

On motion by Mr. Choate, seconded by Mr. Nipper, by 6-0 vote, closed session ended.

CERTIFICATION OF CLOSED MEETING

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. Kimberly Clark was absent.

CONSENT AGENDA

On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Mr. Doane, by 6-0 vote, the agenda was approved with the following change: move item X. I. Consider action on Closed Session Items to item II. A. under Closed Session.

CLOSED SESSION ITEMS

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 6-0 vote, the board accepted the resignation of Steve Hutton, a custodian at Marion Middle School, effective January 31, 2007; and accepted the resignation of Jeanne Chapman, a part-time cafeteria worker at Northwood Middle School, effective December 31, 2007.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 6-0 vote, the board accepted the retirement of Jean Weaver, teacher of the hearing impaired, county-wide, effective at the end of the school year.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Catron, by 6-0 vote, the board transferred Kelly Marchant to the payroll/accounts payable clerk's position at the central office, effective February 28, 2007; and transferred Mike Davidson to the principal's position at Chilhowie Middle School, effective February 13, 2007.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 6-0 vote, the board added a drama supplement to Jessica Sizemore, a teacher at Chilhowie High School.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 6-0 vote, the board approved up to 12 work weeks of unpaid Family Medical Leave during any 12-month period to Virginia Moorer, a teacher at Marion Intermediate School, effective January 10, 2007.

CONSENT AGENDA

On motion by Mr. Choate, seconded by Mr. Catron, by 6-0 vote, the following was approved:

Mr. Doane had to leave at 5:45 P.M.

INFORMATIONAL REPORTS

The board received information from School Health Services on a health profile screening to be offered to all employees.

The board received a list of the 2007 Scholastic Art Awards Regional Winners.

PRESENTATONS/RECOGNITIONS

Marion Middle School had the highest attendance percentage in the middle school category for the month of January. Kyle Rhodes, Principal of Marion Middle School, introduced Corey Royal, an eighth grader, for having perfect attendance this year and for being the SCA President. They received a certificate and a flag to fly at the school.

Rich Valley Elementary School had the highest attendance percentage in the elementary category. Jeff Cassell, Principal of Rich Valley Elementary School, introduced Ben Lamie, a fifth grader, and Terry Harris, a fifth grader, for having perfect attendance this school year. They received a certificate and a flag to fly at the school.

Chilhowie High School had the highest attendance percentage in the high school category. Mike Sturgill, Principal of Chilhowie High School, introduced Ashley Caudill, an eleventh grader, R. J. Hankins, an eleventh grader, and Ryan Gray, a twelfth grader, for winning several awards at the 2007 Regional Scholastic Art Show held in Pulaski, Virginia. Marie-Claire Bullins, art teacher, was also present and acknowledged for her hard work and dedication. They received a certificate and will be retaining the flag from last month.

Saltville Elementary School was the winner of the Most Improved Attendance category for the month of January. Mike Colston, a fourth grade teacher at Saltville Elementary School, introduced Lauren Kestner, a fourth grader, for having perfect attendance since kindergarten. They received a certificate and a flag to fly at the school.

Dr. Robinson reported on a letter he received from the Virginia State Police commending all the elementary schools for adopting families at Christmas for "The Christmas Bears" Project.

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

Dr. Robinson acknowledged that February is "Virginia School Board Appreciation Month." On behalf of the Virginia School Boards' Association, Certificates of Appreciation were presented to each board member for their commitment and services to the children of the Commonwealth of Virginia as a school board member.

Dr. Robinson acknowledged that the third week in February is "VSBA School Board Clerk Appreciation Week." Dr. Robinson presented a Certificate of Recognition to Ms. Doyle for her dedicated work in public education and continuing service to the students of Smyth County Schools.

PUBLIC HEARING

Mrs. Hall opened the public hearing to receive input of the 2007-2008 school board budget.

Kim Medley, an instructional aide, presented salary requests on behalf of the instructional aides.

James Box, a bus driver, presented salary and employee benefit requests for the bus drivers.

Linda Box, a cafeteria worker, presented salary requests on behalf of all cafeteria workers.

Mrs. Hall thanked the groups for coming and indicated all requests for all employees would be referred to the budget committee for study. The public hearing was then closed.

PUBLIC COMMENT

No citizens were present to speak during public comment.

SUPERINTENDENT'S REPORT

Elizabeth Ballard, Business Decision Support Analyst, reviewed revenue, expenditures, and cash flow figures for the month of January, 2007, fiscal year 2006-2007.

Sam Musick, Director of Transportation and Maintenance, reviewed the status of projects funded by the additional funds provided by the Smyth County Board of Supervisors.

DISCUSSION TOPICS

The board heard a report from Dr. Robinson on the budget committee meeting held on Tuesday, January 23, 2007. Betty Webb, President of the Smyth County Education Association, had presented requests on behalf of teachers regarding salaries and employee benefits at the meeting.

Rick Blevins, Director of Human Resources and Auxiliary Services, reported on an insurance comparison with surrounding counties.

The board discussed plans for hosting the Virginia School Boards' Association Spring Forum to be held on Tuesday, April 24, 2007.

Mrs. Hall reported on the VSBA Legislative Conference and NSBA and Federal Relations Conference she had attended. She left materials from these meetings with the superintendent to be shared with the other board members.

QUESTIONS FROM BOARD MEMBERS

There were no questions from any of the board members.

ACTION ITEMS - (MOTION REQUIRED)

The board considered a request from Wytheville Community College Educational Talent Search for a school bus and a driver to transport Marion Senior High School students to Radford University and the Wohlfahrt Haus in Wytheville on Saturday, April 14, 2007. On motion by Mr. Choate, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 5-0 vote, the request was approved.

The board considered a request from Virginia Highlands Community College for a school bus and a driver to be used in their Summer Regional Governor's School program on designated days in June and July, 2007. On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 5-0 vote, the request was approved.

The board considered a request from the Rye Valley Young Farmers at Sugar Grove Combined School for a school bus to be used for a field trip on Tuesday, March 10, 2007, to Saltville. On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Nipper, by 4-0 vote, the request was approved. Mr. Choate abstained.

The board considered a field trip request from Marion Senior High School for the FCCLA to attend the State Leadership and Recognition Conference which is being held April 26-29, 2007, in Virginia Beach, Virginia as presented by Stella Hockett, teacher of Family and Consumer Sciences at Marion Senior High School. On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Catron, by 5-0 vote, the request was approved.

The board considered the Facilities Study RFP as presented by Dr. Robinson. On motion by Mr. Choate, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 5-0 vote, the board approved going forward with the RFP contingent upon the next step of the process being the approval of this study by the Smyth County Board of Supervisors.

The board considered adding a policy for "Procedures for Adjusting Grievances of Classified Staff" (second reading). On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 5-0 vote, the policy was approved with one correction being that the title states Procedure for Adjusting Grievances of Classified and Support Staff.

The board considered deleting the policy for "Praxis" (first reading). On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Nipper, by 5-0 vote, the policy was deleted.

The board considered deleting the policy for "Retirement Bridge Plan" (first reading). On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 5-0 vote, the policy was deleted.

The board considered deleting the policy for "Whirlpool Use" (first reading). On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 5-0 vote, the policy was deleted.

The board discussed whether a date change is necessary for the April 9, 2007, school board meeting scheduled for Atkins Elementary School. On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 5-0 vote, the board approved having the April meeting at the school board office on Monday, April 9, 2007, and going to Atkins for the May school board meeting.

The board considered a request of a Waiver for Pre-Labor Day opening requirements for the 2007-2008 school year. On motion by Mr. Choate, seconded by Mr. Nipper, by 5-0 vote, the request was approved.

On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 5-0 vote, the meeting was adjourned.