Minutes of the November 12, 2007 Smyth County School Meeting

The Smyth County School Board met today in a regular meeting at 5:00 P.M., in the library at Chilhowie Elementary School, 130 Lee Highway, Chilhowie, Virginia.

CALL TO ORDER

Chairperson Hall 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 Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, 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 Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Nipper, 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.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 7-0 vote, invoices for the County School Operating Fund listed for approval in the amount of $830,246.43 were removed from the consent agenda and amended to $830,336.49; and the agenda was removed from the consent agenda and amended as follows: item IX. F. Consider approving criteria for a scholarship provided by Virginia Highlands Community College for students graduating from Chilhowie High School and Northwood High School was deleted; add new item IX. F. Consider approval for the use of one (1) school bus and one (1) driver for the Virginia Highlands Community College Saturday Upward Bound on Campus Program on Saturday, December 8, 2007; move item IX. G. Action on closed session items to item IX. H.; move item IX. H. Adjourn to item IX. I.; and add item IX. G. Consider a second November board meeting to discuss District Accreditation.

CONSENT AGENDA

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 7-0 vote, the following was approved.

INFORMATIONAL REPORTS

The board received copies of Continuing Education and Dropout Statistical Information from 1966-2007.

The board received information on K-3 primary class size, middle school average class size, and K-5 average class size for school year 2007-2008.

PRESENTATIONS/RECOGNITIONS

Marion Intermediate School had the highest attendance percentage in the elementary category for the month of October. Steve Miller, Principal of Marion Intermediate School, introduced Casey Bales, a fifth grader, for being an outstanding student and being involved in many activities at the school. They received a certificate and the flag to fly at the school.

Northwood Middle School had the highest attendance percentage in the middle school category for the month of October. Jeff Comer, Principal of Northwood Middle School, introduced Trevor Poore and Austin Robbins, seventh graders, for having good attendance. They received a certificate and the flag to fly at the school.

Chilhowie High School had the highest attendance percentage in the high school category for the month of October. Mike Sturgill, Principal of Chilhowie High School, introduced Cody Johnson, a twelfth grader, for having good attendance, being the SCA President, and for receiving an appointment to the US Air Force Academy for next year. They received a certificate and will be retaining the flag from last year.

Northwood High School had the most improved attendance percentage for the month of October. Stan Dunham, Principal of Northwood High School, accepted the certificate and flag on behalf of the school.

Dr. Robinson recognized Jeff Comer and Jeff Cassell for completing their doctoral degrees.

Dr. Robinson welcomed Mr. Sam Hambrick, Park District, and Mr. Jim Coulthard, North Fork District, as newly elected members to join the board in January.

Dr. Robinson recognized Marion Middle School for receiving a letter from the Virginia Department of Education on their achievement on the seventh grade Mathematics Standards of Learning test results. Their pass rate increase more than doubled the state average pass rate increase.

Roger Nipper congratulated Laura Hall, Atkins District, and Jesse Choate, Rye Valley District, on being re-elected to serve on the board.

Jerry Catron reported that Laura Hall would be named the president of the Virginia School Boards Association's Board of Directors for 2007-2008 at the Annual Convention in Williamsburg, Virginia.

PUBLIC COMMENT

Linda Kelly, President of the Smyth County Education Association, requested approval for up to four (4) substitutes so teachers could attend Teacher Lobby Day in Richmond in February, 2008. On motion by Mr. Choate, seconded by Mrs. Clark, by 7-0 vote, the request was approved.

SUPERINTENDENT'S REPORT

Jeff Cassell, Director of Operations and Finance, reviewed revenue, expenditures, and cash flow figures for the month of October, 2007, fiscal year 2007-2008.

Dennis Carter, Principal of Chilhowie Elementary School, reported on that school's Annual School Improvement Plan.

Steve Miller, Principal of Marion Intermediate School, reported on that school's Annual School Improvement Plan.

Patty Warren, Principal of Atkins Elementary School, reported on that school's Annual School Improvement Plan.

Danny Newman, Principal of Marion Senior High School, reported on that school's Annual School Improvement Plan.

Stan Dunham, Principal of Northwood High School, reported on that school's Annual School Improvement Plan.

Mike Sturgill, Principal of Chilhowie High School, reported on that school's Annual School Improvement Plan.

Dr. Robinson reviewed the job description for the Coordinator of Auxiliary Services.

DISCUSSION TOPICS

The board discussed plans for traveling on Wednesday, November 14, 2007, to attend the VSBA Annual Convention in Williamsburg, Virginia.

The board made plans for "VSBA Take Your Legislator to School Month."

Dr. Robinson discussed with the board plans for a school board retreat to be held sometime in January or February, 2008.

QUESTIONS FROM BOARD MEMBERS

There were no questions from any of the board members.

ACTION ITEMS - MOTION REQUIRED

The board considered bids for HVAC upgrade for boiler installation cost and bids for HVAC upgrade for the boiler cost at Northwood High School. On motion by Mr. Choate, seconded by Mr. Nipper, by 7-0 vote, the board approved the lowest bid from HVAC, Inc., Bristol, Tennessee, in the amount of $45,100.00 for boiler installation and the lowest bid from Houghtaling and Associates, Richmond, Virginia, in the amount of $24,294.00 for the boiler.

The board considered bids for HVAC upgrade at Rich Valley Elementary School. On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 7-0 vote, the board approved the lowest bid from Southern Air, Bluefield, West Virginia, in the amount of $309,954.00.

The board considered bids for Sugar Grove Combined School gym lighting. On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 7-0 vote, the board approved the bid from R & M Heating and Cooling, Inc., Marion, Virginia, in the amount of $9,980.00.

The board considered HVAC upgrade at the Northwood Middle School's agricultural building. On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Nipper, by 7-0 vote, the board approved the bid from R & M Heating and Cooling, Inc., Marion, Virginia, in the amount of $18,750.00.

The board considered bids for tile flooring for Room #1 at Chilhowie Middle School. On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 7-0 vote, the board approved the bid from Blevins Home Improvement, Atkins, Virginia, in the amount of $8,825.00.

The board considered bids for the installation of a metal roof on the cafeteria at Atkins Elementary School. On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Catron, by 7-0 vote, the board approved the lowest bid from McClure Construction, Marion, Virginia, in the amount of $9,200.00.

The board considered the revised budget priorities for fiscal year 2009 (second reading). On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Nipper, by 7-0 vote, this was approved.

The board considered a trip request for one (1) bus and one (1) bus driver for the Wytheville Community College Upward Bound Saturday Tutorials for January 26, February 23, March 29, April 26, and May 17, 2008. On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 7-0 vote, the request was approved.

The board considered an update to the Smyth County Schools' High School Approved Reading List. This was the first reading and will be considered for approval at the next board meeting.

The board considered a revision to the Student Code of Conduct: Part 7 Dangerous Objects, Firearms, Bomb Threats, Explosives, Arson. This was the first reading and will be considered for approval at the next board meeting.

The board considered approval for the use of one (1) school bus and one (1) driver for the Virginia Highlands Community College Saturday Upward Bound on Campus Program on Saturday, December 8, 2007. On motion by Mr. Choate, seconded by Mr. Nipper, by 7-0 vote, the request was approved.

The board considered a second November board meeting to discuss District Accreditation. Dr. Robinson will check some possible dates in December and contact the board.

CLOSED SESSION ITEMS

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 7-0 vote, the board accepted the following resignations:

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 7-0 vote, the board approved the transfer of Steve Blevins from special education teacher at Northwood High School to the director of special education.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Choate, by 7-0 vote, the board hired the following as recommended by the superintendent effective as of their first day of employment:

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, by 7-0 vote, the board accepted the following resignations in coaching/extracurricular positions:

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Doane, by 7-0 vote, the board hired Lisa Lewis as the head girls' eighth grade basketball coach at Chilhowie Middle School.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Catron, by 7-0 vote, the board approved additional compensation for the extra duties performed by Thelma Massie in the absence of a director of special education.

Mrs. Hall thanked Mr. Carter and his staff for hosting the school board meeting.