School board leadership will not changeBy PAT BROWN,
The Simpson County School Board has voted to leave the current leadership in place for the upcoming year. Stacey Herring will continue to serve as president, Sammie Welch as vice president and Dale Shotts as secretary to the board.
At the same meeting, the board heard a recommendation from Dr. Bo Huffman, director of the Simpson County Technical Center, to allow Todd Allen to utilize the greenhouse at the center for commercial purposes. In return the school would get the greenhouse back in working order and students would have the opportunity to gain horticulture skills. Allen owns a commercial operation in the Florence area called Magnolia Marketplace and operates a lawn and landscape service.
Allen indicated that the move would give students job opportunities.
Before making a decision, the board discussed whether they would be obligated to offer the use of the facility to similar types of businesses if they granted Allen’s request. They instructed the board attorney to research and make recommendations to the board.
The board approved several travel requests: Magee High School Student Council for travel to Oxford for a Student Council Conference;
Jennifer Thornton, Sara Worrell and Marcie Tuggle to attend Jr. Beta Conference in Biloxi;
Gwynn James, Amy White, Sydney Magee, S. Smith, LaDena Forehand, LaShunda Overby to attend Beta Convention in Biloxi;
Amy White to travel with Mendenhall Jr. High Gifted Students to New Orleans to the WWII Museum;
Renee Welch to travel with Beta Club to Biloxi for convention;
Mark Hudson and Mendenhall Honor Band to travel to Band Clinic at Oxford;
Mark Hudson, students and boosters to travel to Six Flags over Atlanta and Georgia Aquarium;
Pamela Woodard and FBLA to attend leadership conference in Jackson;
Leslie May, Judy Byrd, Dene Miller, Keri McRaney and Amy White to travel to New Orleans for professional development;
Elizabeth Christian to travel to Valley State for recruiting;
Wayne Magee to Gaffney, South Carolina, and Highpoint, North Carolina;
Kenneth Carter to Mississippi Gulf Coast Coaching Clinic;
Joanna Maddox to travel to Nashville to the Heartland Training Conference;
Adrienne Sanders and Shelia Carney to the Speech, Language and Hearing conference in Natchez;
Lillie Hardy to attend the National School Board Association Annual Conference in San Antonio, Texas, April 6-10.
At the point in the agenda when the board was to discuss evaluation of the superintendent and the board attorney, they attempted to take the discussion into executive session. This paper objected, stating that the superintendent does not fall under the direction of the board and therefore does not qualify for executive session private discussion.
School board attorney Wesla Leech contended that as an employee of the board, the action of going into executive session for her evaluation would be appropriate.
The newspaper contends that the public has a right to know if the elected school board is satisfied with the performance of the positions that were being discussed.
The board opted to take the critiques home to score them and bring back to a future meeting.
Tom McAlpin informed the board that they will need to take bids for hunting and fishing rights on eight parcels of 16th section land. These will be listed in the legal section of future editions of this publication.