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Houston County Courier - February 2009
By Sharron Randall
During the public comments segment in the regular meeting of the Board of Trustees of Crockett Independent School District, Monday, Feb. 9, Robert K. Meadows of Crockett voiced his concerns about the $130,000 paid to school attorney Wayne Haglund over the past 13 months.
He said, "That's over $10,000 per month. The amount floored me. I can't believe that the taxpayers know this. I'm sure that Wayne Haglund has not and will not spend a penny in this community."
Meadows, who lives in District 2, is current on his taxes, has a child who attends Crockett schools and a wife who is employed with the district, took his 5-minutes to express to board members what was "on my heart."
He expressed appreciation for each board member's service, but admonished the trustees for their lack of support for Superintendent Dr. Bill Like, thus requiring Haglund's legal services.
He listed several improvements made within the district, which he attributed to Dr. Like's leadership and concluded by saying, "Success involves us all working together to assure success for our children."
Third grade students at Crockett Elementary School performed two spirited songs under the direction of music teacher Cynthia House in honor of Valentine Day and friendship. They sang, "Best friends should be together…you are part of me," to the delight of the audience.
In the absence of President Claude Watson, Vice President Johnny Lawrence presided. After some discussion about expenditures and Dr. Like's comment that enrollment was steady and attendance was good, Lawrence called for a vote on the consent items all of which were unanimously approved.
The board also voted unanimously to retain the services of John C. Hardy of the Hardy and Atherton Law Firm of Tyler for the limited purposes of responding to a Public Information Act Request for attorney invoices received on Feb. 5.
Also approved unanimously by the board were the considerations on Item 6, all of which are required by law: Election Order, Joint Agreement with the City, and Trustees Continuing Education Training Report.
The district is required by law to call a School Board Election for the second Saturday in May, May 9.
The following terms of office will expire in May: Trustee Helen Dubcak, District 3; Trustee Karen Johnson, District 4; Trustee Claude Watson, District 7.
Only voters residing in Districts 3, 4, and 7 are eligible to vote in the 2009 Crockett ISD Trustee election.
The first day to apply for a place on the ballot was Saturday, Feb. 7. Applications for a place on the ballot must be filed by 5 p.m. on Monday, March 9 in the CISD Administration Office.
The first day for early voting shall be Monday, April 27 and continue through Tuesday, May 5 with early voting to be conducted at the CISD Administrative Office.
Freddie Kitchen was approved for Early Voting Clerk and John Walker, Judy Wall, Beverly Taylor and Janis Blalock were named Deputy Early Voting Clerks.
Crockett Fire Station was designated as Box 2 with Martha Sims as Election Judge; Crockett High School was designated as Box 3 with Lela Wheeler as Election Judge and the former Crockett Junior High School, now the Crockett Alternative School was designated as Box 4 with Carolyn Anderson as Election Judge.
Dr. Like's recommendation that the Election Judge of Box 2 preside as judge of the Early Voting Ballot Board was also approved.
Every school board member's continuing education record had been completed except by member James E. Berry.
Michael Rohr, director of dining services, presented his report on the status of the district contracted food service program, Chartwell. Rohr said his first priority is to feed the kids and the second priority was to see that his workers got paid.
Sales revenues from 2007 were up about 14 percent and there was an increase of total meals served.
He announced that next month is National Nutrition Month and he would concentrate on low-fat meals.
Assistant Superintendent Jeannie Julian presented proposed grading guidelines to be implemented second semester 2008-2009 in grades 6-12 and in grades 3-5 starting next school year, which brought a good deal of controversial discussion.
Six weeks grades will consist of four minimum major grades per six weeks: unit tests, major projects, major tests, Benchmarks and/or six weeks tests representing 50 percent of the final grade.
A minimum of eight minor grades or daily grades will make up 50 percent of the final six weeks grade and may include homework, classwork, unannounced tests, quizzes, minor projects, and notebooks.
Mrs. Julian called on Stephen Tuggle, principal of Crockett Junior High School and Mark Giles, principal of Crockett High School to report on academic progress, TAKS, incentives, intervention strategies and such on their respective campuses as she completed her End of Semester Academic Reports-Failures, Benchmarks.
Deputy Superintendent David Baxter presented the campus discipline reports and police actions for the end of the first semester with additional remarks contributed by Crockett Alternative Principal Debra Lamb.
Dr. Ianthia Fisher, director of Early Childhood, Even Start and PEP, was assisted by Ticen Wooten and Leslie Horton in her report to the board.
Of Even Start, she said, "The party's over." In it's 16th year, it was only supposed to be funded for a 4-year cycle, but grant funding has expired and will not be renewed.
A new acronym for PEP or Program for Pregnant Students has been changed to Life Skill Program for Student Parents, LSPSP.
It's funded by the state and requires a 25 percent match. Any female or male who is enrolled in Crockett ISD, a parent or parent-to-be seeking a high school diploma or equivalency, enroll in the Teen Parenting class or have home visitor for parenting class is eligible.
After the executive session, board members approved the employment of band director Howard Ellis and early childhood teacher Miranda Johnson and accepted Dr. Like's recommendations on administrative contracts.