School board rec­og­nizes new teach­ers

Westside Eagle-Observer - - FRONT PAGE - By Su­san Hol­land shol­

GRAVETTE — A re­cep­tion hon­or­ing new teach­ers and staff mem­bers was held pre­ced­ing the Au­gust meet­ing of the Gravette School Board. John Ed­wards, board vice-pres­i­dent, in­tro­duced board mem­bers, and new teach­ers in­tro­duced them­selves and told some­thing about them­selves.

De­bra Rosell, a spe­cial ed­u­ca­tion teacher, ad­dressed board mem­bers at the be­gin­ning of the meet­ing, held in the high school li­brary. She thanked them for the ad­di­tional class­room space the board pro­vided for spe­cial ed­u­ca­tion.

Bill Hay­ford, the busi­ness man­ager, gave the financial re­port and said ex­pen­di­tures were hold­ing pretty close to the bud­get.

Jim Sin­gle­ton re­ported that the fa­cil­i­ties com­mit­tee met Aug. 4 and did a walk-through of the new Up­per El­e­men­tary ad­di­tion and li­brary. A mid-Septem­ber

com­ple­tion is ex­pected on the li­brary. He re­ported that a study had been done on Mid­dle School ex­pan­sion, with a $1,244,614 cost es­ti­mate for new con­struc­tion and an es­ti­mate of $960,637 for re­mod­el­ing. The fa­cil­i­ties com­mit­tee rec­om­mended the re­mod­el­ing op­tion.

Nor­man Mitchell, the ath­letic di­rec­tor, gave a re­port on the ath­letic bud­get. He re­ported last year’s bud­get was re­ally good, with ex­pen­di­tures $6,544.22 un­der his pro­jec­tions. This year’s bud­get re­flects some projects re­quired by the state, in­clud­ing re­con­di­tion­ing of hel­mets and shoul­der pads ev­ery other year. Mitchell said he also wants to build bat­ting cages for the base­ball and soft­ball fields, and pole vault stan­dards need to be re­placed on the track. Board mem­bers voted to ap­prove a one-time in­crease of $21,000 in the ath­letic bud­get, to be paid out of the gen­eral fund.

Jay Chalk, the high school prin­ci­pal, gave a vo­ca­tional re­port. He said 28 stu­dents are en­rolled in the weld­ing class, seven from Ben­tonville, three from Ben­tonville West, two from De­catur, three from Gen­try, three from Siloam Springs and 10 from Gravette. The HVAC class has six stu­dents en­rolled from Gravette and two from De­catur. The CNA/PCA class is full, with 12 stu­dents. Two cos­me­tol­ogy stu­dents are going from Gravette to Siloam Springs, one diesel me­chanic stu­dent is going to NTI in Spring­dale and one stu­dent to the Ig­nite program in Ben­tonville. Chalk said an af­ter-hours weld­ing class would prob­a­bly be of­fered again this year.

Richard Page, the su­per­in­ten­dent of schools, gave his mid-year goals re­port. He said progress is be­ing made, par­tic­u­larly on one of his main goals, par­ent-com­mu­nity in­volve­ment.

Board mem­bers voted to ap­prove the North­west Tech­ni­cal In­sti­tute tu­ition agree­ment. The 2017-18 bud­get was also ap­proved, in­clud­ing a trans­fer of $607,568.48 from debt sav­ings to the build­ing fund and a trans­fer of $250,000 from the op­er­at­ing bud­get to the build­ing fund. Based on the cur­rent debt sched­ule, the district was re­fi­nanced to re­al­ize a sav­ings for three years, the 2016-17 school year be­ing the last year. Per state man­date, the sav­ings must be trans­ferred to the build­ing fund.

Af­ter a short ex­ec­u­tive ses­sion, board mem­bers re­turned to reg­u­lar ses­sion and voted to ap­prove hir­ing Nova Sud­duth as a half-time bus driver; Roger Miller as a bus driver; and Adam Vore as the as­sis­tant se­nior-high foot­ball coach, ex­tend­ing his con­tract 15 days for a to­tal of 205 days for the 2017-2018 school year.

A spe­cial meet­ing of the board was held Thurs­day, Aug. 31, to con­sider the ex­pul­sion of a stu­dent. At that meet­ing, the board voted to ex­pel a high school stu­dent for a pe­riod of one year.

The next reg­u­lar meet­ing of the board will be held Mon­day, Sept. 18, at the school ad­min­is­tra­tion build­ing.

Photo by Su­san Hol­land

John Ed­wards, vice-pres­i­dent of the Gravette School Board (left), in­tro­duces board mem­bers at a re­cep­tion held hon­or­ing new teach­ers pre­ced­ing the Au­gust meet­ing of the board. Richard Page (right), su­per­in­ten­dent of schools, waits to wel­come the teach­ers at the re­cep­tion held in the high school com­mons.

Photo by Su­san Hol­land

Mem­bers of the Gravette school board held their first meet­ing of the new school year in the li­brary at Gravette High School. Pic­tured (from left) are board sec­re­tary Heather Fin­ley, Tracy Moor­man, su­per­in­ten­dent Richard Page, board vice pres­i­dent John Ed­wards and board mem­bers Jack Skil­lett, Ty Rus­sell and Hope Duke.

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