Minutes of the November 11, 2002 meeting of the Smyth County School Board, as approved by the School Board at its December 9th, 2002 meeting

Marion, Virginia
November 11, 2002

The Smyth County School Board met today with all members present. On motion of Mr. Choate, seconded by Mr. Doane, the minutes of the last meeting were approved as presented. On motion of Mr. Choate, seconded by Mr. Campbell, the agenda was approved after adding 14.c: School health services; and adding to item 15: Other items of interest - receive information for the building committee.

Mike Rolen, Special Education Supervisor, thanked the board for the way they handled the superintendent's search and for the opportunity they gave administrators and teachers to meet the candidates.

Julius Winebarger, Senior Class President of Marion Senior High School, addressed the board regarding the senior class traveling by bus to Walt Disney World in Florida instead of going to Washington, D.C. On motion of Mr. Grinstead, seconded by Mrs. Hall, the board approved this request. The students will miss four days of school.

Wayne Trivette, principal of Atkins Elementary School, introduced Tiffany Reedy, SCA President, for having perfect attendance. Kyle Rhodes, principal of Marion Middle School, introduced Kari Spickard for having perfect attendance. Matthew Haas, principal of Northwood High School, introduced Seth Harden, a ninth grader, for having perfect attendance and for having straight A's. Each school received an attendance flag. Karen Chamberlain, teacher at Chilhowie Middle School, made these flags.

The board recognized Terry Hawthorne as the 2002 Region VII Educational Technology Leadership Award recipient.

On motion of Mr. Doane, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted with 5 ayes and 2 nays to appoint Jim R. Sullivan as the next division superintendent of schools to take office January 1, 2003. Dr. Hopkins and Mrs. Hall voted against the motion.

Short statements were made to the board on the superintendent's search process by Mrs. Hall, Dr. Hopkins, Mr. Catron, and Mr. Grinstead. On motion of Mr. Campbell, seconded by Mr. Choate, the board voted to table the considerations of the new superintendent's salary, benefits, and contract until the December meeting.

Dr. Winters reviewed the 2002-2003 revenue, expenditure, and cash flow figures. Dr. Winters reviewed audit responses from those schools with listed errors. On motion of Mr. Choate, seconded by Mr. Campbell, the board voted to accept the audit report of Bostic, Tucker and Company on the school activity and cafeteria funds for year ending June 30, 2002. Dr. Winters reviewed the revised 2002-2003 operations budget. On motion of Mr. Campbell, seconded by Mr. Grinstead, the board voted to approve the revised budget in the amount of $36,004,579. Dr. Winters will go to the governing body and ask them to make that appropriation.

On motion of Mr. Catron, seconded by Mrs. Hall, the board voted to endorse the Board of Education's Resolution on Funding. Dr. Winters will send a letter showing the support of the board.

Dr. Winters reviewed 2001-2002 SOL/Accreditation results. Ten of the 13 schools in Smyth County have been fully accredited by the State Board of Education as a result of students' performance on Standards of Learning tests. The three schools who are not fully accredited are close. Mr. Campbell suggested the board draw up a resolution congratulating the schools on their achievements. This will be brought back at the December board meeting.

Preston Brockman, Assistant Superintendent for Administration, gave an update on health insurance, transportation, and food services. John W. Harris, bus driver, requested a waiver from the requirement for all bus drivers to obtain their air brakes certification since he is retiring at the end of the 2002-2003 school year. On motion of Mr. Campbell, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board approved this request.

On motion of Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Campbell, the board decided to close the tennis courts at Marion Senior High School from December 15 until the end of February, 2003.

The board voted to approve the revised policy for Promotion/Retention Middle Grades 6-8 on motion of Mr. Campbell, seconded by Mrs. Hall.

The board took no action to enforce the more stringent smoking policy that the American Lung Association of Virginia was urging school divisions to adopt. This policy would prohibit the use of tobacco products by anyone on school property at any time.

The board received copies of staff from schools. This will be used during next year's budget preparation.

The board reviewed new laws regulating military recruiters in the public schools. Both the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 and the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2002 now state that military recruiters are entitled to receive the name, address, and telephone listing of juniors and seniors in high school. This will change our current policy.

The board considered a proposal for athletic training services from Heartland Rehabilitation Services. They will provide a nationally certified and state licensed athletic trainer to provide services within the three high schools in Smyth County. No action was taken. The board will consider this proposal at the December meeting.

On motion of Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Grinstead, the board voted to approve the request to take the 6th and 7th grade enrichment students to the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama. On motion of Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Grinstead, the board voted to approve the Educational Talent Search Department taking middle school students in the Educational Talent Search program from Smyth and Washington counties to attend a college tour and football game at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tennessee on Saturday, November 30, 2002.

The October payroll, paid October 31, 2002, checks #36510-36660, was approved on motion of Mr. Campbell, seconded by Mrs. Hall. On motion of Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Campbell, current invoices in the amount of $572,169.25 from the County School Operating Fund were ordered paid, the same to be listed in the warrant register. On motion of Mr. Campbell, seconded by Mrs. Hall, current invoices in the amount of $251,510.43 from the County School Debt and Capital Outlay Fund were ordered paid, the same to be listed in the warrant register.

Pursuant to 2.1-344(A) of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act, on motion of Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Doane, the board voted to convene a closed meeting for the purpose of discussing the following specific matters: hiring of personnel as authorized by 2.1-344(A)(1) of the Code of Virginia. On motion of Mr. Grinstead, seconded by Mrs. Hall, the board returned 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: WHEREAS, 2.1-344(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: Yes: 6 No: 0

Mr. Choate had to leave.

On motion of Mr. Grinstead, seconded by Mr. Campbell, the board accepted the resignations of Marsha Sturgill, special education aide at Marion Primary School and Sherri Eldreth, English teacher at Marion Senior High School. On motion of Mr. Grinstead, seconded by Mr. Campbell, the board approved to hire Melodi Collins - Marion Primary School - Special Education Aide as recommended by the superintendent. On motion of Mr. Grinstead, seconded by Mr. Campbell, the board voted to hire Carter Neal as a long-term substitute to finish out the year at Marion Senior High School.

A decision on the school health services will be made at the December board meeting.

On motion of Mr. Doane, seconded by Mr. Grinstead, the board voted to approve the following changes requested for Chilhowie Elementary School in the amount of $90,000.00: 1. Security request 2. Renovation of section adjacent to kindergarten built by vocational students and maintenance. On motion of Mr. Doane, seconded by Mr. Grinstead, the board voted to approve the air conditioning request for rooms 6, 7, 10, and 16-20 for Chilhowie Middle/High Schools in the amount of $70,000.00.

Dr. Phillip C. Hopkins, Park District Representative, submitted his letter of resignation. Dr. Hopkins, who is currently serving as chairman of the school board, had one year left on his term in office. The board will appoint a replacement to serve as Park District representative on the board until a new member is elected next November. The elected representative will take office on January 1, 2004.

On motion of Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Grinstead the meeting was adjourned.