Minutes of the October 10th, 2005 meeting of the Smyth County School Board, as approved by the School Board at its November 14th, 2005 meeting

Marion, Virginia
October 10, 2005

The Smyth County School Board met today with all members present. The meeting was held at 6:00 P.M., in Room 1 at Chilhowie Middle School, 1160 Lee Highway, Chilhowie, Virginia.

Sue Tilson, Principal of Chilhowie Middle School, welcomed all present.

Mr. Choate thanked Mrs. Tilson for allowing the board to meet at Chilhowie Middle School and for the meal.

On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve the minutes from the September 12, 2005, school board meeting with the following correction: Deborah M. Ogle was hired as a part-time instructional aide at Marion Intermediate School instead of as a full-time instructional aide.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve the agenda after adding to item 21. Other items of interest - a. Questions from Laura Hall; and b. Consideration of the addition of two business courses at Marion Senior High School.

No citizens were present to speak during citizens' time.

Sugar Grove Combined School had the highest attendance percentage in the elementary category for the months of August/September. Dennis Carter, Principal of Sugar Grove Combined School, introduced Zachary Pickett, a sixth grader, for having perfect attendance last year and this year. The school received a certificate and a flag to fly at the school.

Kyle Rhodes, Principal of Marion Middle School, introduced Lori Tucker, a seventh grader, for having perfect attendance. Marion Middle School had the highest attendance percentage in the middle school category. The school received a certificate and will be retaining the flag from last spring.

Chilhowie High School had the highest attendance percentage in the high school category. Steve Reedy, Principal of Chilhowie High School, introduced Amanda Doane, a twelfth grader, for being the SCA President and having excellent attendance. The school received a certificate and will be retaining the flag from last spring.

Mr. Doane had to leave the meeting.

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

Mr. Sullivan updated the board on student enrollment figures for 2005-2006. As of September 30, 2005, enrollment was 5,008.

Dr. Michael Robinson, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction, reviewed class size figures for the 2005-2006 school year.

The board considered some revision requests for the crucial field trip list for the 2005-2006 school year as presented by Mr. Sullivan. On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve the revision requests for field trips with the exception of the Enrichment Program Field Trip for sixth and seventh graders. The board would like more clarification on this trip and to bring it back to the next meeting.

The board heard a report on the Jobs for Virginia Graduates Program presented by Mr. Barry Glenn, Director of Jobs for Virginia Graduates. Mr. Glenn presented Kim Stewart with a certificate for outstanding leadership and support of the program and obtaining '5 of 5' performance goals for the Class of 2004.

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

The board heard a report from the committee sanctioned by the board to revisit the job description of the Director of Testing position.

On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Mrs. Clark, the board voted unanimously to approve a request for the use of a school bus by the Wytheville Community College Educational Talent Search to transport students from Marion Middle School and Sugar Grove Combined School to Emory & Henry and Bristol Caverns cultural day on Tuesday, November 8, 2005.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve a request for the use of a school bus by the Evergreen Soil and Water Conservation to transport adults from the community for farm tours on Monday, October 17, 2005, in the Adwolfe and Sugar Grove areas.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve the following advisory committees:

a. Career and Technology - correction to read Smyth Career and Technology; b. Gifted - as presented; c. Special Education - as presented; d. Title I - as presented; e. Family Life - correction to Saltville Elementary School - name should read Nanine Woodward; f. School Health - as presented; and g. Technology Education - after adding Laura Hall as the board member. On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted unanimously to approve the school fund raising activities for 2005-2006.

The board considered a summary of school board budget amendments totaling $1,083,411.00 for 2005-2006 as presented to the Smyth County Board of Supervisors and to be voted on by them following a public hearing on Tuesday, October 11, 2005, at 3:30 P.M. On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve the budget amendments as presented.

Elizabeth Roberts, Business Decision Support Analyst, reviewed revenue, expenditures, and cash flow figures through the month of September, 2005.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to amend the motion approving the agenda to include item 14.e. Approve budget amendments as of September 30, 2005.

The board considered line item transfers in the 2005-2006 budget totaling $700.00. On motion by Mr. Catron, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve this transfer.

Mr. Sullivan reviewed the 2005-2006 budgeted instructional allotments for schools. On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted unanimously to approve the allotments for schools as presented.

The board received a report on transportation costs September, 2004, vs. September, 2005, as presented by Mr. Sullivan.

The board considered budget amendments as of September 30, 2005, totaling $56,795.29. Mr. Sullivan reported that the office equipment listed was for the Virginia Department of Education School Nutrition Program furniture. On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted unanimously to approve the budget amendments.

Pursuant to 2.2-3711 of the Virginia Freedom of Information act, on motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to convene a closed meeting for the purpose of discussing the following specific matters: personnel issues as authorized by 2.2-3711(A)(1) of the Code of Virginia and a student issue as authorized by 2.2-3711(A)(2) of the Code of Virginia.

During the student issue, Student A's parents, grandparent, John Graham, Attorney, Dale Holt, Principal of Marion Senior High School, and Kim Sturgill, Director of Pupil Personnel Services, were present.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, 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: 6 Nays: 0

Mr. Doane returned to the meeting following closed session.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted to support the recommendation from the superintendent and principal involving Student A at Marion Senior High School. The motion passed with six (6) ayes. Mr. Doane abstained.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted to accept the resignations from Adrian McKinney as a cafeteria worker at Chilhowie High School, and Lisa Dockery as an instructional aide at Marion Intermediate School. The motion passed with six (6) ayes. Mr. Doane abstained.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted to approve the requests for Family Medical Leave for Dana Smythe, teacher at Marion Senior High School, and Barbara Cannon, an instructional aide at Saltville Elementary School. The motion passed with six (6) ayes. Mr. Doane abstained.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted to hire Cyrilla Scott as a part-time occupational therapist aide for the CCEC students at Marion Middle/Marion Intermediate Schools; hire Penny Jones as the seventh grade boys' basketball coach at Northwood Middle School; and hire Rebecca Peery for the winter cheerleading sponsor for basketball at Northwood High School. The motion passed with six (6) ayes. Mr. Doane abstained.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted to accept the resignation of Eric Pennington as the eighth grade girls' basketball coach at Marion Middle School, but allow him to continue as coach for the seventh grade girls' basketball team and hire Sarah Sparks as the eighth grade girls' basketball coach at Marion Middle School. The motion passes with six (6) ayes. Mr. Doane abstained.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted that effective immediately the rate of pay for the Adult Education Program and all summer school teachers be $20.00 per hour. The motion passed with six (6) ayes. Mr. Doane abstained.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted to hire Amanda Hobbs as the cheerleading coach at Marion Senior High School; to fund a position for an instructional aide to be added at Marion Middle School; hire Caleb Kestner as kindergarten teacher at Sugar Grove Combined School; hire Sarah Powers as a part-time cafeteria worker at Chilhowie High School; and hire Kristi Propst as an instructional aide at Marion Primary School. The motion passed with six (6) ayes. Mr. Doane abstained.

Mr. Sullivan reported on the compensation arrangements for school board members. Board members will receive $400.00 per month July through December of each year for a total of $2,400.00 per board member.

Dr. Mike Robinson, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction, updated the board on the Virginia Department of Education Efficiency Review.

Dr. Mike Robinson reported on SOL scores for 2004-2005. Mr. Choate requested for the superintendent to send each school a letter from the school board to thank them for their performance on the SOL tests.

Board members received copies of Alan M. Blankstein's book, "Failure is Not an Option". Dr. Robinson reported on its use as a part of our staff development program.

Mr. Sullivan reported on the plans for a joint legislative breakfast involving school board members, members of the board of supervisors, and legislators. The breakfast will be held Friday, October 28, 2005, at Marion Intermediate School at 7:00 A.M., in the school library.

On motion by Mr. Nipper, seconded by Ms. Sneed, the board voted unanimously to approve the September payroll, paid September 30, 2005, checks #49415-49923.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mrs. Hall, the board voted unanimously to approve and pay current invoices in the amount of $896,436.44 from the County School Operating Fund, the same to be listed in the warrant register.

On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted unanimously to approve and pay current invoices from the County School Debt and Capital Outlay Fund, as follows, the same to be listed in the warrant register:

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Catron, the board voted unanimously to approve invoices for utility payments made prior to the October 10, 2005, school board meeting in the amount of $10,898.71 from the County School Operating Fund, the same to be listed in the September warrant register.

On motion by Ms. Sneed, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve payments for textbooks to publishers in the amount of $5,098.42 for the month of August, 2005.

On motion by Mrs. Clark, seconded by Mr. Nipper, the board voted unanimously to approve payments for textbooks to publishers in the amount of $2,517.19 for the month of September, 2005.

Laura Hall asked if a policy had been established for the disbursement of Gideon Bibles in the elementary schools. Mr. Sullivan reported that he would be meeting with elementary school principals on this, and he would bring it back to the board at a later meeting.

Laura Hall wanted to know the status of the grant award in the amount of $22,500.00 from the Smyth County Community Foundation for its Career Pathways Project. Mr. Sullivan told the board that RFP's had been sent out, and that we were in the process of the RFP's being returned. He reported that these funds would be matched from a grant approved by the Virginia Tobacco Commission.

Laura Hall asked if all board members received a letter requesting certain information and if the superintendent would be responding to this letter. Mr. Sullivan told the board that he was putting the information together and would respond as soon as possible.

Laura Hall had a question regarding how salaries for administrators at the school level are calculated and how the different degrees held is added in. Mr. Sullivan reported that all degrees obtained above the master's degree are added on to the salary. Laura Hall asked if there was any way to identify how the money not spent in the 2004-2005 school board budget could have been used. Mr. Sullivan told the board that we had received extra money from sales tax and lottery. The board made the decision to return this money to the Smyth County Board of Supervisors. Mr. Sullivan said that in subsequent years we will request a carry-over for any unspent monies to be used on identified projects.

The board considered the addition of two business courses for students at Marion Senior High School. On motion by Mrs. Hall, seconded by Mrs. Clark, the board voted unanimously to approve a Business Law Course and an International Business Management Course for Marion Senior High School.

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