School board discusses transportation issue

By Amanda McBride

The Choctaw Plaindealer


Whether or not to transport French Camp Academy students to the Career and Technology Center was discussed in the September 9 School Board meeting.

The district is trying to decide if they can legally transport private school students from FCA to the vo-tech for classes that the students are enrolled in. The board discussed this matter a couple of months ago but took no action.

In this meeting, Mike Thomas, School Board president, said the district can transport the FCA students but the district carries the risk of liability. He added that the district would need a memorandum of understanding with FCA before transporting any students.

Superintendent Glen Beard said, “The problem is when a FCA student steps onto our bus. They are a private school.”

He recommends letting FCA transport their students.

Thomas added that the district has a school bus traveling from French Camp to Choctaw County High School and to the bus shop to refuel but they still have the liability issue.

He added that the Career and Technology classes need the FCA students to help sustain enrollment numbers.

“They are entitled to the programs,” said Thomas.

School Board member Laura Gibbs asked, “What if homeschool kids want to take the classes and need transportation?”

After more discussion the board approved to have Kevin Null, board attorney, to ask for an official opinion from the state auditor’s office on the issue.

Also in the board meeting, Shane Burton, principal of Choctaw County High School, gave an update on the school year so far. There are approximately 550 students in 7-12 grade at this time.

He said the school year is going well and the community is supporting the students and athletic teams.

After questions from the board, Burton explained that lunchtime is tight with three 24 minute lunch periods but they are making adjustments as they can.

Gibbs asked Burton about why are there fees to play sports.

“People need access to play without the financial burden. It’s a public facility,” said Gibbs.

Burton said each sport has fundraisers to help offset the costs of playing the sports. He added that any items the athletes purchase they keep.

Gibbs said sometimes fees are increased to “priced people out of it” or playing the sport.

Beard stepped in and told Burton to make sure all athletes and their families are aware of fundraising opportunities to offset costs of playing the sport.

The board briefly discussed then approved two lease renewals, amend and approve the final Fiscal Year 2013 budget and adopted a resolution awarding the sell of the shortfall note to the Bank of Kilmichael at 2.89 percent for three years or less.

The School Board approved the following in the consent agenda:

Approve employee Workshop/Conference requests.

Sandi Muirhead to ACT College and Career Readiness at MS on Oct. 18, 2013.

Francesca McGee to ERATE Newbie Training in Jackson, MS.

Maureen Power to EMCED Sped Quarterly Meeting in Meridian, MS on Sept 4, 2013.

Maureen Power to Statewide Special Ed. Directors Meeting in Jackson, MS on Sept 11, 2013.

Maureen Power to Fall Special Education Leadership Inst. in Jackson, MS on Sept 25-26, 2013.

Jason McCuller to MSTA in Jackson on Oct 27-29, 2013.

Lynn Scribner to ACT College and Career Readiness at MSU on Oct 18, 2013.

Ann Ellington to Office of Healthy School – School Nurses’ Meeting.

Kim Maxwell to Fall Sped Leadership Institute in Jackson, MS.

Approve Field Trip requests.

Jennifer Box’s Kindergarten class to go on a walk around town Sept 12, 2013.

Choir to MSU Choral Workshop in Starkville, MS on Sept 15-16, 2013.

WES Pre-K and Kindergarten field trip to Bull Bottom Farms in Duck Hill, MS on Oct 18, 2013.

Approve M-to-M transfers.

Approve WES 1st grade’s fundraiser request.

Approve WES library fundraiser request.

Approve fundraiser request for WES Pre-K and K.

Approve request for fundraiser for the High School Cheerleaders.

Approve financial hardship waiver.

Approve right of way repair request for 814 W. Fentress Road and 804 W. Fentress Road.

Approve recommendation of Nicole Harris as Cook/Cashier at CCHS for the 2013-14 SY.

Approve request for English professional development.

Approve request to purchase TE21 Benchmark Testing.

Approve subscript agreement and license agreement from Ed Options, Inc. to be paid out of at risk funds.

Approve request to purchase subscription to School Status.

Approve request for federal programs consultant contract.

Approve request for Elementary music non-certified position to be changed from half time to FCE and WES to full time at WES for the 2013-14 SY.

Approve Ms. Lauren Keith to fill the assistant music teacher position at WES for 2013-14 SY.

Approve application for emergency license for Shuni Coffey.

Approve change of duties for Becky Hester for the remainder of the 2013-14 SY.

Approve Sherry Raybourn, Rebecca Honeycutt, Donna Gazaway, Melinda Ellard, Frances Hughes, Shunn Frazier and Ginger Castle as substitute teachers pending background, fingerprints, and paperwork.

Approve Robin Robinson as a substitute bus driver.

Approve Brandi Fiebig, Valerie Freeman and Sherry Raybourn as cafeteria substitutes pending fingerprint, background and paperwork.

Approve request to purchase floor machine for CCHS.

Approve request for open purchase orders to certain businesses for the daily needs concerning the upkeep of the school facilities and assets.

Approve request to pay for maintenance work on football stands by Kenneth Goins.

Approve request to pay mileage for Miranda Worrell for the round trip to CCHS to coach Girls sports fifth period for the remainder of the 2013-14 SY.

Approve MFC recommendation to accept tree planting bid for 16-19-10 from Timber Investment Managers.

Approve request for donation of days from Sunja Douglas to Kristy Camp due to maternity leave.

Approve requests for expedited graduation.

Approve application for use of school facilities.

Approve request for FMLA for David Frazier.

Approve request for FMLA for Shelia Jackson.

Approve request for an employee’s child to attend school in the school district in which he teaches.

Approve Mrs. Sarah McCulloch as a long-term substitute.

Financial agenda:

Approve insurance check for $12,227.17 for AP year end clearance returned to district maintenance fund.

Approve docket of claims.

Approve absentee report.

Approve substitute report.

Approve financial statements.

Approve request for fixed asset disposal.