Highlights from the Board of Education meeting

Published 10:08 am Friday, August 12, 2022

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by Kerri Klatt, Managing Editor

The Crisp County Board of Education held a meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, August 9, 2022 at the Board of Education office located at 201 7th street in Cordele. Items on the agenda included:

The 4.5% property tax cut was discussed, and the advertised and proposed millage rate was lowered to reflect it. The board will meet to hear public comments and approve the lowered millage rate on Thursday, August 19 2022. The Board of Education Chairman, Scott Forehand proposed reinstating the Duty Free Lunch requirement for Kindergarten through 5th grade teachers. In 2020, the administration asked the Georgia Department of Education for that law to be waived. During the August 19th called meeting, the board plans to address the discussion further.

Other agenda items included revising the GHSA sports and activities coaches’ incentive structure to make it equitable for coaching successes in non-spotlight sports such as Track, Wrestling, Golf, JROTC, and fine arts competitions. This incentive will be discussed further in the September BOE meeting.

A new Agricultural Facility to support the system vocational programs was discussed. The board asked for more input from Ken Little and the agricultural vocational teachers before the board makes a decision. Other business happening in the month of September is the school safety assessments by outside agencies that will be performed. The Georgia Professional Standards Commission, GAPSC would be reviewing measures to prevent inappropriate staff and student relationships as well as the Georgia Emergency Management Agency, GEMA will be looking at efforts to prevent violence and intruders in the schools. Chairman Forehand discussed the benefits and value of those assessments to also be completed by non-governmental parties.

The school board approved donating several items including desks, computers and shelving to a local law enforcement agency as well as an approval for a non-exclusive agreement with the Cordele law firm of Lawson, Reid and Dean, led by attorneys Hayden Hooks and Doug Dean, to provide as-needed legal counsel.

Upcoming capital projects for the school board include: Bids for completing the Middle School outdoor facilities will be opened on Thursday, August 19, 2022. Work would begin this fall but needs the BOE approval. The high school gym seat replacement is to begin within the month of August. The architect will complete the old middle school site located on Pecan Street and 24th Avenue plans by mid-September so that the board would be able to approve those plans in October. The high school softball field, tennis courts, soccer field parking, bathrooms and athlete dressing room project should be ready to bid out in October. The next Board of Education meeting will be held the second Tuesday of the month of September 13, 2022 at 5:30 p.m.