October 2020 School Board Meeting

October Board Meeting Returns to (Somewhat) Business as Usual
Posted on 10/02/2020
This is the image for the news article titled October Board Meeting Returns to (Somewhat) Business as UsualAfter six weeks of in-person classes at schools, the October meeting of the Weakley County School Board returned to a degree of normalcy not enjoyed since the March closure.

While some members still utilized the virtual option, business was conducted primarily in person in the Board of Education conference room.

Chairman Steve Vantrease called the meeting to order. He noted that October is national Principals Month and expressed appreciation for the “above and beyond” efforts during the pandemic.

Director Randy Frazier offered details on resolutions and transfers. Regarding a $50,000 transfer to the general fund balance, he pointed out when budgets were submitted in summer, the Weakley County Commissioners had a lower projection of revenue. However, the state requires local funding bodies to meet “maintenance of effort” requirements for local school funding. (Budgeted local revenues for the current fiscal year must be equal to or greater than the budgeted local revenues for the prior fiscal year.) County Commissioners have seen higher than expected revenues and as a result the $50,000 needed to meet this state mandate could be added to the general fund balance. The transfer was approved by the Board.

Frazier then mentioned Greenfield School has been fundraising to build a greenhouse in honor of former longtime ag teacher Bill Voorhies. To assist with construction, Frazier requested approval to move $16,000 out of travel for Career Technical Education since travel is limited due to COVID-19 safety precautions. The board approved.

In other items of business, Ally Spain was approved as a volunteer coach for Gleason softball.

During Frazier’s report, he updated the board on the Monitored Distance Education program citing an upcoming change in the process. Any students who wish to take part in the virtual option in the future will have to provide a medical rationale and the request will need Frazier’s approval.

Frazier also reported that currently 5 students are in isolation having tested positive for the virus and 3 staff members. The total numbered quarantined are 80 students and 3 staff, a significant improvement over August highs of 19 positive and 203 in quarantine, he said.

Frazier then shared that in a future meeting, the board should consider appropriate parameters for out of town travel to events and tournaments.

“Our hopes will be that our students will be able to participate as we move further into the school year,” he said.

The board then approved consent items scheduled over the next several months, contingent upon determination of their safety at the point of the event. Events include Westview cheerleaders attending competitions in Southaven, Mississippi; Murfreesboro; Brentwood; Sevierville and Orlando, Florida from October 31 through February 2021; Westview girls’ basketball travel to Gatlinburg in December; and Dresden High’s cross country team competing n Hendersonville on November 5 if they qualify.

Before adjourning, Board Member Martin Hamlin asked if the increase in substitute pay that was approved in the September meeting had netted more applications. When told it had, he suggested the board consider for a future discussion an increase in payments to bus drivers if recruitment continues to be problematic.

The next meeting of the Board is November 5 at 5:00 p.m.

Click here to view recording of Zoom meeting of board.