Minutes of the March 9, 2009 Smyth County School Board Meeting

The Smyth County School Board met today in a regular meeting at 5:00 P.M., in the board meeting room, 121 Bagley Circle, Suite 300, Marion, Virginia.

CALL TO ORDER

Chairperson 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. Coulthard, seconded by Mrs. Hall, by 7-0 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.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 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: 7, Nays: 0.

CONSENT AGENDA

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the following was approved:

PRESENTATIONS/RECOGNITIONS

Sugar Grove Combined School had the highest attendance percentage in the elementary category for the month of February. Gary Roberts, Principal of Sugar Grove Combined School, introduced Kody Evans, a fifth grader, for having perfect attendance. They received a certificate and the flag to display at the school.

Marion Middle School had the highest attendance percentage in the middle school category for the month of February. Mariann Blevins, Assistant Principal of Marion Middle School, introduced Allison Bane, Anna Crowell, Stevie Dalton, Scott Graham, Andrea Myers, Hunter Pearcey, and Taylor Goswick. They are all eighth graders and have not missed a day of school in their three years at Marion Middle School. They received a certificate and will be retaining the flag from last month.

Marion Senior High School had the highest attendance percentage in the high school category for the month of February. Danny Newman, Principal of Marion Senior High, introduced Troy Pollard, Assistant Principal of Marion Senior High School, and Kesha Null, Attendance Secretary at Marion Senior High School. They take care of attendance issues at the school. Troy Pollard introduced Shawnee Carnett, a twelfth grader, for having good attendance. They received a certificate and the flag to display at the school.

Atkins Elementary School was the winner of the Most Improved Category for the month of February. Reva Rhea, Principal of Atkins Elementary School, introduced Joshua Charles, a fourth grader, for working hard to improve his attendance. They received a certificate and the flag to display at the school.

Dr. Robinson presented Virginia Board of Education Excellence Awards to Chilhowie High School and Rich Valley Elementary School. He also presented Virginia Board of Education Competence to Excellence Awards to Northwood Middle School, Chilhowie Middle School, Chilhowie Elementary School, and Marion Middle School.

Dr. Robinson shared that the Partnerships of Purpose Program, which is a collaborative program between Marion Primary School and Marion Senior High School, was recognized with an Excellence in Education Award from Virginia Tech.

Dr. Robinson reported that the Southwest Virginia Public Education Foundation has received $275,000.00 for a Science Partnership Grant. Smyth County will participate in this grant.

Dr. Robinson congratulated all the schools for doing so well in their winter sports. Mr. Choate requested the superintendent contact the newspapers so all the schools could be recognized for all their achievements.

PUBLIC COMMENT

No citizens spoke during public comment.

SUPERINTENDENT'S REPORT

Dr. Cassell reviewed revenue, expenditure, and cash flow figures for the month of February 2009, fiscal year 2008-2009.

DISCUSSION TOPICS

The Board discussed the 2009 VSBA Southwest Regional Forum to be held in Abingdon, Virginia, on Wednesday, May 13, 2009.

The Board discussed the VSBA Hot Topic Conference: "Less Money, New Money and Going Green" to be held at the Charlottesville Omni on Thursday, April 30, 2009.

The Board made plans to attend the VSBA Hot Topic Conference to be held in Wytheville, Virginia, on March 11, 2009.

Dr. Robinson gave an update on the fiscal year 2009 and fiscal year 2010 budgets.

QUESTIONS FROM BOARD MEMBERS

Mr. Coulthard inquired about the Anthem Insurance Plans. The school division has met with Anthem, but at this time has not received our renewal for consideration.

ACTION ITEMS—MOTION REQUIRED

The Board considered the following policies for approval (second reading):

On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the policies were approved.

Dr. Robinson will bring back Policy DJG Vendor Relations for a third reading.

The Board considered policy additions and/or changes for the following (first reading):

The Board considered a request of a waiver for Pre-Labor Day opening requirements for the 2009-2010 school year. On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, this was approved.

The Board considered adoption of the 2009-2010 Smyth County Schools' Calendar. On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Catron, by 7-0 vote, the opening day of school for the 2009-2010 school year was set for Wednesday, August 19, 2009.

The Board considered calling a school board meeting for Monday, March 23, 2009, at 5:00 P.M. On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 7-0 vote, this was approved.

The Board considered moving the Monday, April 13, 2009, school board meeting to Tuesday, April 14, 2009, at 5:00 P.M., at Sugar Grove Combined School. On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, this was approved. This change in meeting date and location will be advertised.

CLOSED SESSION ITEMS

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the Board accepted the following retirements:

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the Board accepted the resignation of Steve Harris as instructional aide at Marion Intermediate School.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the Board hired Jonathan Rouse as full-time bus driver in the Marion area.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the Board approved up to a total of twelve work weeks of unpaid leave during any 12-month period of Family Medical Leave for Monica Perkins, custodian at Marion Middle School.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the Board accepted the resignation of Linda Brinkley as assistant varsity girls' softball coach at Chilhowie High School.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the Board hired the following in coaching positions:

Based on the superintendent's recommendation made in closed session, on motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the Board dismissed the employee identified in employee dismissal Case #2009-01.

On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Coulthard, by 7-0 vote, the meeting was adjourned.