City School teachers given pass if needed for pension rally

A plan has been set into motion that will allow teachers at Barbourville Independent Schools the opportunity to attend a rally if Kentucky’s Governor calls a special session to vote on pension reform.

While a date has not yet been announced, Governor Matt Bevin stands firm that he will soon announce a special-called session of the Kentucky House and Senate to vote on his proposed pension reform plan. If and when that time comes, Barbourville Independent Schools will dismiss class for one day, allowing faculty and staff to rally in Frankfort showing support for their state pension. The Board’s answer to this extra day is to utilize a no-school day, May 22, 2018, as a make-up day. The day is also the primary election, but Barbourville Independent School is not a voting poll location, therefore school can be in session if needed. It is only during a United States presidential election that schools don’t have the option to stay open.

Consuming much of Thursday’s meeting was discussion with the architects charged with designing an upcoming renovation of the school’s cafeteria, entrance and administrative area. Plans for cost effectiveness and workflow in the kitchen area were of the greatest concern. The Board voted to approve the schematics presented with revisions. Construction isn’t expected to begin until sometime in late 2018.

Continuing a long-standing tradition of working with area schools, the Board voted to approve a reciprocal agreement with Corbin Independent Schools for the 2018-19 school year.

Joining ranks with other area colleges and universities, the Board voted to approve a Dual Credit program with Eastern Kentucky University, allowing students to take coursework for dual credit beginning with the Spring 2018 semester.

Board member Will Daniels made a motion to agree to participate with the KSBA Scholarship Application program. The program will allow two students, one male and one female, to receive scholarships of $2500 each. Students must have a minimum ACT score of 20 to apply.

The district was honored Thursday as it was presented with 12 banners by the South East South Central Co-Op as they were recognized for their top regional performances in GAP, Growth, Graduation Rate and KPREP at the school and district level. “It was quite impressive,” said Dixon. “We are very proud of our teachers and students and all of their hard work.”

In keeping with theme of improvement, Brian Carey, the district’s Director of Pupil Personnel gave an update on attendance figures for the school. “Mr. Carey does a great job with attendance,” said Dixon. “He works every day at that. He has a team of teachers that helps him tremendously with promoting and all of our administration really works hard to see that kids understand that it’s important. We try to make every day important in the classroom, if you miss a day you really miss something, and that’s kind of our goal.”

High attendance is expected among all students, but especially among athletes. “Every team had an overall attendance rate of 95% or above for the school year,” said Dixon. “And that is commendable.”

“When you are doing a great job at closing the gap between the different performance groups of students, it’s quite an accomplishment,” said Dixon.

Sealed bids were opened relating to the sale of two vehicles, a 1997 Ford Taurus and a 2001 Ford Crown Victoria. Only a single bid of $25 for the Taurus was received, but was rejected by the Board in favor of scrapping the car for the value of the metal. Two bids were received for the Crown Victoria, $276 and $250. The Board voted to accept the $276 bid.

The Board’s next scheduled meeting is 6 p.m. on Thursday, December 21.