Board of Education receives reports on wellness program; PCHS distance learning classes
The Board of Education met for a regular meeting on Monday.
Wilma Dale, Director of Student Services, and School Health Nurse Jenny Friel reported to the Board on changes that need to be made in food items that are sold as class fundraisers and at concession stands for school athletic events under the countyﾒs Wellness Policy.ﾠ Under federal regulations, school systems must have a local wellness policy to set standards for foods sold on school property with the objectives of promoting student health and reducing childhood obesity.ﾠ The Board approved a wellness policy for this county last year.
They noted that changes cannot be made overnight, but there are items being sold now with no food value at all that should be eliminated at once and replaced by more healthy food selections.ﾠ The food items provided at classroom parties must also be changed to more healthy selections, Ms. Dale and Ms. Friel stated.
The possible problems for some students caused by preservatives found in some of the concession food items were also discussed.
Board President Kenneth Vance assured Ms. Dale and Ms. Friel that the Board supports the effort to change to more healthy food items and to bring it about as fast as possible.
PCHS Principal Tom Sanders gave the Board a report on the number of students at the high school that are taking classes electronically from off-school sites.ﾠ Someﾠ classes come by way of the Internet and others are offered by New River Community College as distance learning classes.ﾠ
This semester 33 students are taking nine classes, with 68 students scheduled to take nine classes during the second semester.ﾠ
At this time, PCHS Librarian Susan Chappell has the responsibility of supervising these electronic classes since no one has applied for a planned facilitatorﾒs position.ﾠ Ms. Chappell told the Board that since she cannot supervise the distance learning classes and run the library at the same time, the library is closed to most of the students part of the day.
Nancy Martin, PCHS English teacher, told the Board that her third block senior English class has not been able to make use ofﾠ the library this semester.
The problem of access to the library will be greater during the second semester unless a facilitator is hired, Ms. Chappell told the Board.
School Superintendent Patrick Law said the high school is probably offering more distance learning classes than it should have and that he and Mr. Sanders are working to find a facilitator to relieve Ms. Chappell of this duty.
Mr. Sanders also gave brief reports on alternative education, in-school suspension, and 21st Century Community Learning Grant programs at the high school.ﾠ He and Board members also discussed the Respect and Protect program at his school. He said he would have more details on all these items when the Board meets at PCHS next month.
Approval was given to submit an application to the state School Building Authority for a Major Improvement Project grant.ﾠ The grant, if approved, will be used to install air conditioning at Hillsboro, Green Bank,ﾠ Marlinton Elementary, Marlinton Middle, and the auditorium, annex building and shop at PCHS.ﾠ Associate Superintendent Alice Irvine reported thatﾠ the engineer who is designing the air conditioning systems was in the county last week.
A contract in the amount of $7100 with Scott Floor Company, of Roanoke, Virginia, to sand, strip, and refinish the gym floor at Marlinton Middle was approved.ﾠ The school will provide $4000 and the Board $3100 for the work.
It was approved to divide a $30,000 grant from the state Department of Education for music programsﾠ among the three schools with marching bands.ﾠ A base amount of $8000 for equipment and $49.18 per band member for equipment or supplies will provide $9033 to Green Bank, $9967 to Marlinton Middle, and $11,000 to PCHS.
Other items approved were:
* a contract with Roger Trusler for consulting services to enhance 21st Century Skills program, nursing program, and school security plans
* a 30-day extension of the comment period for the policy on Field Trips and Excursions. due to changes made in the proposed policy based on suggestions received during the first comment period.
The Board met in an executive session prior to deciding on how to handle an employee grievance. They were given three choices:ﾠ conducting a hearing on the grievance; reviewing the record and making a decision; or waiving Board participation in the grievance process.
A motion to use option one was defeated on a 2- 3 vote.ﾠ A motion to use the third option was then approved on a 2 - 0 vote.
Under personnel matters, approval was given for the employment of:
* Cheryl Jonese as teacher of In-School Suspension at Green Bank
* Thomas Plumley as head boys basketball coach at Green Bank
* Jessica Dunbrack as a teacher, 21st Century Community Learning Center at Hillsboro
* Virginia Calhoun and Pamela McCurdy as teachers for the after-school reading program at Hillsboro
* Carolyn Ann Lester as teacher of In-School Suspension at Marlinton Middle
* Diane Delfino as teacher for the Parent Educator Resource Center
* Linda Mainland as itinerant teacher of autism for Hillsboro and Marlinton Elementary.
Also approved was a change in assignment for Michael Dipasquale from co-assistant basketball coach to assistant basketball coach, at PCHS.
The next regular Board meeting will be held on November 27.
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