CHIPLEY - The Washington County School Board gave Superintendent Joseph Taylor the green light to draft a resolution to place the half-cent sales tax on the November ballot during their August 11 meeting. Taylor will work on the resolution with County Attorney Jeff Goodman, and it will be presented to the Board of County Commissioners for their approval when they meet in regular session August 28.
If placed on the ballot, the referendum would require a majority approval from voters. If passed, the levy would begin in January and last for a period of ten years.
The tax is expected to generate about $1,281,546 in revenue and will be used to fund capital outlay and technology projects.
Board members also heard from Perry McCall Construction regarding the building of the new facilities at Vernon Elementary School. The firm reported the project is complete and finished both on time and on budget.
The board also discussed the Kate M. Smith Elementary School project, with Greg Kelly of CRA Architects stating the firm hopes to see "dirt moving" on the site sometime in October or November.
"We're down to the nuts and bolts (of pre-planning) and have DEP permits in hand," said Kelly. "We will be here each month with updates."
Seven firms have submitted application to serve as construction manager for the project, and the board will begin interviews next month.
Roulhac Middle School teacher Greta Draayom also addressed the board, expressing concern regarding basic maintenance and cleaning at the campus, such as the need for an efficient way to clean cobwebs from the hurricane shutters, pressure washing to clean away mold and mildew, and following up with the school's janitorial service. Draayom stated a cleaning checklist was placed in her classroom at the end of the school year, but the list is still blank, despite the apparent work that has taken place by the janitorial service.
"The board told the service they would follow up, but the list hasn't been checked off, and it wasn't just my classroom. What the use if it's not going to be checked off?" She continued to comment the job the service did waxing the tile floors is "amazing."
The board also approved or accepted the following human resource items:
- Transfer of paraprofessional Christy West from Roulhac Middle School to Chipley High School
- Resignation of Jason Craft, Programmer Analyst I, effective Aug. 5
- Employment recommendation of James Sanders, computer network technician, effective Aug. 18, pending pre-employment screening
- Employment recommendation of Michael Drummond, computer network technician, effective Aug. 18, pending pre-employment screening
- Transfer of guidance counselor Sarah Short from Vernon High School to WISE to serve as guidance counselor and drop prevention staff, effective Aug. 8
- At Chipley High School: Resignation of Chelsea Fayne, effective July 21, and employment recommendation of Janie Lolley, effective Aug. 8, pending pre-employment screening
- At Kate M. Smith Elementary: Employment recommendation of teacher Jessica Mathis, effective Aug. 8
- Roulhac Middle School: Employment recommendation of teacher Troy Rackley, effective Aug. 8, Transfer of teacher Carrie Bennett to RMS from Vernon High School, effective Aug. 8, Resignation of OPS employee Merrissa Woods, effective Aug. 7, and then her employment recommendation as attendance secretary, effective Aug. 8
- Vernon Elementary School: employment recommendations of teacher Sonya Brock (Board member Vann Brock abstained from the vote due to family relation) and Pre-K Paraprofessionals Tara Thompson, Frances Lee, and Genevelyn Peterson (Board member Milton Brown abstained from the vote due to family relation), all effective Aug. 8 and pending pre-employment screening.
- Vernon High School: emploment recommendation of teacher Heather Brinkmeier, effective Aug. 8 and transfer of Lisa Taylor from Roulhac Middle School to Vernon High School guidance counselor position, effective Aug. 8
- Vernon Middle School: changed Paraprofessional Connie Stufflestreet from a six-hour day to a seven-hour day
- Washington-Holmes Technical Center: Additional days for employee Stephanie Halley
- Transportation: employment recommendation of bus drivers Lisa Lee and Landly Works, effective Aug. 18, retirement of Shelia Flowers, effective Aug. 1, resignation of Thomas Camp, effective Aug. 22, and restructuring a Chipley Transportation Aide position to add transport duties for Washington-Holmes Technical Center.