Minutes of the July 26, 2006 Smyth County School Board Meeting

Marion, Virginia
July 26, 2006

The Smyth County School Board met today in the board meeting room at 5:00 P.M., in a continued meeting from Monday, July 10, 2006.

CALL TO ORDER

Chairman Choate called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone.

The roll was called by the clerk, and all members were present.

CLOSED SESSION

Pursuant to § 2.2-3711 of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act, on motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to convene 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 and student exemption from compulsory attendance as authorized by § 22.1-254(B)(1) of the Code of Virginia.

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

On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Mrs. Clark, the board voted unanimously to return to the open 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: 7
Nays: 0

AGENDA

On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve the agenda with the following additions:

  1. Move item VI. Adjourn to item VII. Adjourn; and
  2. Make item VI. Other items of interest - a. Hear comments from board members.

SUPERINTENDENT'S REPORT

Mr. Choate reported on the recent budget committee meeting held with the Smyth County Board of Supervisor's Budget Committee and the status of the school board's request for use of the remaining funds from the 2005-2006 school board budget.

ACTION ITEMS - (MOTION REQUIRED)

The board considered employment of school personnel for 2006-2007 as presented by the list of "Smyth County School Board Appointments 2006-2007." On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to appoint the personnel identified in the list of "Smyth County Board Appointments 2006-2007" to serve the school board during the term beginning July 1, 2006, and ending June 30, 2007.

The board considered the transfer of an early childhood teacher and aide positions from Marion Primary School to Saltville Elementary School. On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mrs. Clark, the board voted unanimously to approve these transfers.

The board considered the addition of a .25 foreign language teaching position at Sugar Grove Combined School. On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve this position.

The board considered the addition of a .5 biology teaching position at Marion Senior High School. On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mrs. Hall, the board voted unanimously to approve this position.

The board considered the addition of a .5 math teaching position at Chilhowie High School and an additional .5 math teaching position at Northwood High School. On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mrs. Hall, the board voted unanimously to approve these positions.

The board considered a request for the use of two school buses and two drivers by the Rich Valley Fair for Saturday, July 29, 2006. On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve this request.

The board considered a request from Northwood High School's band director to allow selected eighth grade band students to participate with the high school marching band. A decision regarding this was tabled until the next board meeting when more information could be provided regarding the criteria for selecting these students.

Mr. Doane made a motion to hire Larry Estep for the principalship vacancy at Chilhowie Middle School. Ms. Sneed stated that, "She hated that we had come to this point in this issue. I don't think this is the way we should do business, but I do think the motion deserves a vote." Ms. Sneed seconded the motion. The motion failed with three ayes and four nays.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to accept the resignations from:

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve a request for three students to be exempt from public school attendance by reason of religious training or belief as authorized by § 22.1-254(B)(1) of the Code of Virginia.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to hire David W. Cassell as a bus driver for Rich Valley Elementary School to replace Marion Hanshew.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to fill the following coaching positions:

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to move Dennis Billings, a custodian at Marion Primary School, from a 180 day contract to a 12-month contract. During the 180 school days, he will remain as five (5) hours in the cafeteria and three (3) hours as school custodian. The rest of the contract days will be eight (8) hours as school custodian.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to hire the following as recommended by the superintendent:

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to hire John Britton in a new, part-time position to teach foreign language at Sugar Grove Combined School.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mrs. Clark, the board voted unanimously to transfer the following positions:

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted to hire Mike Sturgill as the new principal at Chilhowie Middle School as recommended by the superintendent. The motion passed with five ayes. Two board members abstained due to the fact that they felt that proper procedures had not been followed, and they did not agree with the process.

OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST

Mr. Choate informed the board that Laura Hall is president-elect of the Virginia School Boards Association.

Mr. Choate read a thank-you note from Joyce Henderlite thanking the board for the fine reception for the retirees.

Laura Hall reported on a meeting she had attended in Charlottesville. She left some materials for the board with Mr. Sullivan.

ADJOURN

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