WEBSTER COUNTY, Ky. (4/10/13) - Despite setbacks earlier in the school year, the Webster County School Board continued to press forward with plans for the Webster County Middle School, scheduled to open in August of 2014.
Monday night, at a meeting in the Webster County Annex in Dixon, they fielded two matters that will put them one step closer to construction.
The first was approval of a BG-1, or work permit request, to complete repairs to the roof in the middle school area of the building. Part of that roof in what has been known as the “math hall” was damaged during a tornado several years ago and still leaks.
“We’re restoring foam sections on the entire 70,000 square foot area,” said John Stevens with Trenco, the company contracted to do the repairs. “We will remove the old foam, then come in and clean and pressure wash those sections. Then we’re going to patch holes and level any sections that have standing water. Finally we’ll coat it. We will warranty everything that we do.”
The total cost of the project is $359,998.34. The board voted unanimously to approve the work, which must be done before the area can be used for the middle school.
Representatives from Clotfelter-Samokar presented the board with the latest updates to the middle school blueprints. These reflecting some suggestions from the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE), who had requested a restroom and a records room to be constructed in the administration portion of the structure. The board approved the changes 5-0.
The next item on the agenda was approval of the Comprehensive District Improvement Plan. (CDIP) This is normally due on December 1, but the KDE extended the deadline this year because test scores were late coming in. The CDIP is supposed to address the achievement gaps and list strategies to achieve the district’s goals.
“This is a plan that is fairly well dictated by the state,” said Chairman Jeff Pettit.
“Correct, there is very little freedom of choice in this matter,” said Superintendant James Kemp. “The real addressing of deficits are done at the school level, and the school improvement plan, where the principals are working on this on a daily basis.”
“The CDIP refers to a personnel director,” said board vice-chair Mickey Dunbar. “I was not aware that we had a personnel director.”
“Many of our employees wear different hats,” Kemp said. “Through the years that job has fallen on (Assistant Superintendant) Alan Lossner.”
The board voted to approve the CDIP.
Next the board voted to approve the second reading of the revision of Board Policy 09.2212- Use of Physical Restraint and Seclusion. The change comes because of a new requirement from the state.
The change adds “seclusion” to the list of options the school can take, only if a student’s behavior poses an imminent danger of physical harm to himself or others. In such a situation the student could be confined in a room or area from which they cannot leave.
“It’s going to be difficult to implement and difficult to interpret, but it is what the state says it wants,” Dr. Kemp told the board.
Board members then had to consider the future of school board attorney Amealia Zachary. The contract for the board attorney is for a one year period with the possibility of a one year extension each of the following two years. 2013-2014 would be Zachary’s final extension on the current contract. The alternative is to advertise the position and seek a new candidate.
Tim McCormick quickly made the motion to renew, followed by a second from David Higgins.
“Do we have a copy of the contract?” Jeff Pettit asked.
“If we do it was signed about 10 years ago when I first took the position,” Zachary said. “Since then it’s been taken care of verbally.”
“I think there is a KSBA recommended contract,” Pettit said. “With the scrutiny we’re under, I think it’s in our best interest to implement that contract.”
“I can’t, in good conscience, vote to renew a contract that can’t be produced,” Mickey Dunbar agreed.
The board voted to table the decision until its next meeting on April 29.
In other business the board voted to allow the city of Slaughters to take possession of the trophies from the former Slaughters Elementary School as well as a trophy case to display them in at the Slaughters City Building.
Finally the board discussed moving playground equipment from the Slaughters Elementary School playground to Sebree. Jeff Pettit asked to have a price quoted by the next meeting.
J-E News Editor
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