Knox School Board addresses Nickel Tax

By David Stewart

November’s School Board Meeting was held Nov. 25 and awards and recognition were upstaged by an amendment to the agenda and a vote to keep or rescind the nickel tax.

Flat Lick Elementary’s kindergarten class led the crowd in the pledge of allegiance. They were recognized by the board for their participation.

Dr. Jason Reeves, Dean of Educational Studies Unit at Union College was on hand to pass out two Excellence in Education awards from Union College. Michael Eric Hubbard and Nicki Hammons were the recipients.

Governor’s Cup Junior Division (includes 9th and 10th grades) award winners were Cherish Gray, who placed 1st in composition and 4th in language arts. Josh Cole placed 4th in science written and 6th in arts and humanities. Addison Osborne placed 5th in composition. JV Challenge coach Lisa Harris was on hand to be recognized for 4th overall place.

The school board noted that Southeast South Central Education Co-op had recognized Dewitt for making 20.9 in gains on unbridled learning. Lynn Camp had 13.7 in gains.

The 51st District All Tournament Volleyball Team had 3 members from District Winner Lynn Camp: Brooklyn Bryant, Breanna Hollin and Destiny Hill. Knox Central, District runner up placed one member Sadie Harris.

Frank Shelton wrapped up student recognition by recognizing cheerleading teams that had competed in the KAPOS regional competition. In the Super Large Division, Knox Middle won first place. For medium varsity, Knox Central was runner up. Lynn Camp was runner up in the large division and 3rd place with Lynn Camp Middle.

Monthly attendance awards were as follows: Dewitt took home the elementary award with a percentage of 94.28. Lynn Camp’s principal, Anthony Pennington, took home both the middle school 93.72 and high school with 91.08.

The next item on the agenda was to “adopt the agenda.” Prior to that motion, board member Merrill Smith requested to amend the agenda to include “a vote to rescind the recallable nickel tax.” His request was accepted. Numerous issues were approved by the board: electronic fund checking, teachers to eat with students and have same per diem (field trips and sporting events). Local Planning Committees were accepted for all schools. A female soccer coach was hired. A part-time person was hired for hearing impaired teaching, which replaced a fulltime position. This results in a 60% savings to the county. Two Family Medical Leave Acts were accepted.

Every item on the “printed agenda” had been covered except the added vote on the nickel tax. Board Chairman Merrill Smith said he would make a motion to rescind the tax.

Gordon Hinkle said prior to voting he would like to add that, “The board needs to learn a lesson from this. We need to talk to the people prior to shoving things like this down their throats.”

Smith stated, “I do not believe that we shoved this down anyone’s throat.”

Hinkle replied, “Well my people told me that this is how they felt.”

Smith recognized that there was a motion in play. Sam Watts seconded the motion and the board effectively recalled the tax.