February Vilonia Board of Education meeting held this week

  The Vilonia Board of Education ended the February meeting, held last week, with the resignation of board member Jake Turner—effective immediately.

Following an executive session, it was announced that Turner had submitted a letter of resignation saying he would be leaving due to personal reasons.

Board president Randy Sanders said, the resignation would be accepted but that “we will miss you.” Other board members and Dr. David Stephens, school superintendent, thanked Turner for his service and also expressed their appreciation saying he will be missed. In turn, Turner said he has enjoyed serving and considered it to be an honor.

“I have faith you all will continue to do what is best for the kids,” Turner said. There was no discussion among the board regarding filling the position. 

In another matter, the board also approved a memorandum of understanding for the school resource officer. Currently, Sgt. James Bell of the Vilonia Police Dept.,  holds the position.  It was said that the rate of pay may be higher for some officers than others due to rank and years of service to the police department.

The district will reimburse the city in the amount of the officer’s hourly rate of pay for eight hours per day for 178 days and 75 percent of the officer’s benefits excluding the cell phone provided by the city of Vilonia. Also, the district will increase the salary reimbursements in increments over the next two years bringing the officer’s current salary to that 75 percent threshold.

The school resource officer reports to the superintendent. His job responsibilities include:  supervises student/parent parking before and after school; helps enforce compliance with parking permits; Responds to building administration requests re: student discipline issues; provides supervision at evening athletic events; provides a visible, positive presence of law enforcement to students/staff in school cafeterias, hallways, classrooms; implements appropriate protocol and completes appropriate paperwork regarding student discipline/legal issues; maintains “on call” status for school administration during the school day; assists or directs assistance with bus discipline issues; provides age/grade level appropriate presentations for classes at administrators’ request.

In other business, the board:

--Approved the renewal of the school board liability coverage for $10,770.

--Approved the purchase of a 2004 Toyota propane forklift from Illinois Lift Equipment for $12,600 including shipping.

--Approved the purchase of 7,400 gallons of diesel fuel from Green and Chapman at a cost of $12,998.84.

--Approved a proposed school calendar for the 2017/18 school year with a starting date of Aug. 14 and an ending date of May 24, with four inclement weather days at the end of the school year.

--Accepted the resignations of Rebecca Mitchell, Frank Mitchell Intermediate cafeteria manager, (effective immediately); Chere’ Beavers, Gifted and Talented coordinator and Sara Beth Blair, high school counselor, (at the end of the school year). It was announced that Sheila Ivy will fill in as cafeteria manager at FMIS until the end of the year when a job posting for the position will be made.

--Reviewed a customized website program that has the potential for allowing parents to register their children in school from a computer or their cellphones. The program, Evan Beavers, technology director, said would “cut down” on duplicates and paperwork school wide. Within five years, Beavers said, the district could be “almost paperless.”

--Spotlight.  Vilonia third graders read their stories in the two books that, they had, recently published.

--Administrative contract renewals were made including Cathy Riggans, assistant supt.; Debbie Knowles, curriculum program administrator;  Vandy Nash, curriculum program administrator at the elementary; Elizabeth Kelley, SPED director; Josh Hart, asst. SPED director; Matt Sewell, high school principal; Rick Kelley, associate high school principal; Tim Bullington, assistant high school principal; Ronnie Simmons, principal Freshman Academy; Lori Lombardi, principal middle school; Rodney Partee, assistant middle school principal; Andy Pennington, principal Frank Mitchell Intermediate School; Amy Goers, assistant principal FMIS; Susan Loyd, principal primary school; Jody Brewer, assistant principal primary school; Kelly Walters, principal elementary school; Kim Lacy, assistant principal elementary school.