Highlights from regular meetings of the Cherokee County School Board
Photo: Participants from the 2018 VILLA class were recognized at the School Board Meeting
Nov. 15, 2018: Regular Meeting
The Cherokee County School Board on Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018, approved its annual Legislative Partnership Program outlining requests for the local Legislative Delegation’s consideration during the upcoming session, and local control topped the list.
The one-page report posted online here splits the School Board’s main concerns into three categories: Local Control & Governance, Educational Opportunities, and Funding.
“As is our practice, we will continue to monitor K-12 public education proposals during the legislative session and make sure that local control is the primary consideration of the General Assembly,” said School Board Chair Kyla Cromer.
For Local Control, several issues are listed including the continued ability for School Boards to set their own local school year calendar, a matter that some in the State Legislature have argued should be State-controlled to better serve the tourism industry. Another important issue noted is the elimination of the State-mandated use of schools as public polling locations during regular schools days -- a safety and security risk that the School Board thinks should be avoided by locating polls elsewhere.
Under Educational Opportunities, the School Board is focused on one issue, which has been a mainstay on its priority list in recent years: State legislation to bring back the career/technical diploma track for students who are focused on entering technical college or the workforce, rather than a four-year university.
On its Funding list, the School Board is asking the Legislature revise the State education funding formula to reflect the true cost of school bus transportation, which is seriously underfunded by the State; as well as to add State funding for safety and security and increase it for counselors, social workers, psychologists and school nurses to further improve these critical student services. More State funding for students living in poverty also is among the requests, as is ensuring all State teacher salary increases are incorporated into its permanent salary schedule.
The School Board also is repeating its request that the Legislature discontinue the use of public funds to pay for private school tuition or provide tax incentives to their parents, as such measures erode funding for public education.
Among the monthly human resources recommendations approved by the School Board were two leadership appointments. Kim Barger, who serves as a teacher on special assignment to assist in leading the CCSD Preschool Centers, has been appointed Principal of Tippens Education Center. Lindsay Bowley, the Teasley MS academic coach and a past CCSD Teacher of the Year, has been appointed as CCSD’s first recruitment coordinator to assist the Office of Human Resources in recruiting the best teachers and staff possible.
The School Board also:
• Recognized Etowah High School senior Victoria "Tori" Ridgeway for achieving a perfect ACT score;
• Recognized CCSD Parent Mentor JoEllen Hancock as winner of the Georgia Parent Mentor Partnership's 2018 Phil Pickens Award;
• Recognized CCSD 2019 Teacher of the Year Dana Townsend of Mill Creek Middle School;
• Recognized Creekview High School Assistant Principal Jessica Whitley as a finalist for the statewide title of 2019 Georgia Assistant Principal of the Year;
• Recognized Clark Creek Elementary School STEM Academy as a finalist for the Technology Association of Georgia and the TAG Education Collaborative 2018 Georgia STEM Education Awards;
• Recognized Clark Creek Elementary School STEM Academy for earning the Model Professional Learning Community (PLC) at Work Honor;
• Recognized CCSD Lead Nurse Gwen Chambers and Arnold Mill Elementary School Nurse Betty Miller as finalists for the March of Dimes 2018 Georgia Nurse of the Year Awards;
• Recognized Creekview High School teacher Andrea Sheldon, who was named to Serve on the State School Superintendent's Teacher Advisory Council;
• Recognized CCSD VILLA Program Class of 2018 participants;
• Approved a new Partnership Agreement with Life University;
• Approved monthly financial reports;
• Approved out-of-state travel and out-of-state and overnight field trips;
• Approved the monthly capital outlay projects report;
• Approved special lease agreements; and,
• Approved the annual update of the CCSD Five-Year Strategic Plan.
Next meeting: 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018