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School board passes several items, recognizes retirees

Jacob Smith • Jun 5, 2018 at 6:03 PM

The Wilson County Board of Education discussed and passed several line items and recognized retirees from Wilson County Schools at its meeting Monday night.

The board announced 37 retirees from the school system, including Mel Brown, who retired as Mt. Juliet High School principal after 45 years; Linda Gay, who retired as a Mt. Juliet Elementary School kindergarten teacher after 41 years; and Marilyn Hemontolor, who retired as a Southside School eighth-grade teacher after 46 years. Each retiree present received a plaque to commemorate their years of service.

“To all of you ladies and gentleman, we thank you for your service,” said board chair Larry Tomlinson. “For all the dedicated years, we appreciate it. To do what you’ve done, it doesn’t go unnoticed.”

Wilson County Director of Schools Donna Wright read potential line items, which were voted on by the board. The items included changes to the schools suspension, expulsion and placement policy and a change in the amount of time before meeting requests to appear before the board can be filed.

The board approved a change to the suspension and expulsion guidelines to include students who initiate a physical attack on an individual student on school property or at a school activity, including to and from school or a school activity.

Also, in response to a large amount of concern regarding threats made following recent school shootings in other parts of the country, the suspension and expulsion guidelines were further expanded to include students who make a threat, including a false report, to use a bomb, dynamite or any other deadly explosive or destructive device, including chemical weapons, on school property or at a school-sponsored event.

The board also made a change to the amount of time needed for a request to appear before the board. The amendment changed the amount of time needed from one week before the meeting to 10 working days before the meeting. The change was made to give the board time to post and advertise the appearance on the agenda.

Several other recommendations from the director were approved, including:

• Tenure was granted to James Wilson, deputy director schools, and Travis Mayfield, principal at Wilson Central High School. This was approved unanimously.

• A line was added in the attendance policy that said, “All Wilson County Schools will implement a three-tier system to improve student and school attendance.” This was approved by a vote of 5-1. Board member Wayne McNeese voted against it, and board member Tom Sottek was absent when the vote was taken.

• The alternative school programs policy was changed to say parents of students assigned to an alternative school will provide their child’s transportation. A section was also added said, “If the student returns to Wilson County Schools, he or she will be required to complete the assigned SHDA discipline. If a student has served the assigned discipline partially or in totality in an alternative setting in another public school, the director of schools or a designee will review the placement for Wilson County Schools.” This was approved, along with the attendance policy.

• The board awarded the contract for Fleet Fuel Management Services to Tri Star Energy. This was approved unanimously. It also unanimously voted to award a contract for copy paper to American Paper and Twine.

• Two mowers that mainly sit idle at Lebanon High School were declared surplus and will be traded in toward the purchase of a new mower. The board approved this unanimously.

• A budget amendment was made to cover the full slate of bus drivers the school system had for the spring, as well as attendance bonuses for drivers. This was approved unanimously. The board also unanimously approved a budget amendment to cover supplies and equipment for the summer for the cafeterias.

• A memo was approved to send to the city of Lebanon that asks for a waiver of all fees associated with the sewer line connection for the new Gladeville Middle School project, the Harding Drive Project and the school system’s portion of the project for the turning lane extension on Hartmann Drive in front of Lebanon High School. The school system accepted this in lieu of $471,259 due from mixed drink taxes collected by the city prior to September 2013. The board approved this by a vote of 6-1. McNeese voted against it.

•  The central cafeteria fund budget and lunch prices for the upcoming year were passed unanimously. There were no new items in the budget and no change in prices for lunch items.

• The extended school program fund budget for the upcoming year was passed by a vote of 5-2. McNeese and board member Bill Robinson voted against it.

• The school federal projects fund budget for the upcoming year was approved by a vote of 6-1. McNeese voted against it.

• The school system’s Learning Center handbook and rates were changed to reflect the changes approved in the recent special called meeting. The change reflects the new weekly rates, which are $195 for children up to 36 months and $185 for children 37-60 months. The sibling discount is $20. The board approved this by a vote of 5-2. McNeese and Robinson voted against it.

The board will meet for a work session June 28 at 5 p.m., and its next regularly scheduled meeting will be July 2 at 6 p.m. at the central office on Harding Drive in Lebanon.

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