Suzanne Stewart
Staff Writer

It was an evening for celebration at Monday’s Pocahontas County Board of Education meeting with recognition for both teachers and students alike.

Superintendent Terrence Beam began the meeting with a special recognition of Pocahontas County High School ProStart teacher Teresa Mullen.

“[She] was selected as the 2019 West Virginia ProStart Educator of Excellence,” he said. “She is now a finalist for a national award sponsored by Golden Corral. Congratulations to Ms. Mullen. We’re all very aware of the work she does and the good program she runs. It’s good to see our people recognized for doing good things.”

The award sponsored by Golden Corral is the National Educator of Excellence Awards, and the winner will be announced later this spring. 

As a finalist, Mullen will be considered for one of the following awards – Classroom Expertise, Best Practice/Knowledge Sharing and Industry Connection. The winner of each category will receive $3,500. She may also be a finalist for the James H. Maynard Teacher of the Year Award, with the winner receiving $10,000.

Mullen will be honored at the Educator of Excellence Awards reception May 9 and 10 in Washington, D.C.

Student representative Jarod Liptrap also shared accolades for students at PCHS.

The Pride of Pocahontas Warrior Band traveled to Princeton last week for ratings – or adjudication – where it received a rating of three. 

The sophomore class traveled to West Virginia University for a tour, as well as a special visit to a local farm in the Morgantown area.

Liptrap also reported on student athletics. The softball team has a record of five and two, while the baseball team has a record of two and eight.

The archery team traveled to a state tournament in Huntington where Ben Davis placed ninth, Maria Workman placed fifth and Allie Lane placed fourth. Workman and Lane will move on to the national tournament in May in Louisville, Kentucky.

The track team recently had a meet at Keyser High School where the girls team placed first overall and the boys team placed third.

In updates:

• Beam reported that the first CEFP – Comprehensive Educational Facilities Plan meeting will be Monday, April 15, at 2 p.m. This meeting will be for board members and central office employees only. The collective will meet with Thrasher Engineering, which will act as the architect on the project. The meeting will include setting up dates and times for the community meetings with all CEFP members.

Beam added that students will have a three-hour early out April 11 so the schools can work on their comprehensive plan for the next school year.

• Board member Becky Campbell reported that the Family Resource Network is organizing a week-long summer camp set for July 8-11 which will train high school students in Job Readiness. The students will learn how to properly dress and act at a job interview and the dos and don’ts for entering the workforce.

In miscellaneous management, the board approved the following:

• Memorandum of Understanding between the Pocahontas County Board of Education and Pocahontas County Family Resource Network, for services and reimbursement as set forth in the MOU.

• Retainer agreement for legal services between Dinsmore & Shohl LLP and Pocahontas County Board of Education, for services and fees as set forth in the agreement.

• Hillsboro Elementary School students to travel by school bus to Massanutten Indoor Water Park, McGaheysville, Virginia, on May 17. Trip to be paid for by PBIS funds.

• Scott Garber to transport PCHS forestry students to Dabney S. Lancaster Community College, in Clifton Forge, Virginia, on April 15.

• To place the following policies on 30-day comment: KCB/LEBA – Pocahontas County Parent and Family Engagement Policy; GBQC – Critical Need/Shortage – Substitute Teachers; and IKM – Pocahontas County Schools Dual Credit/Advanced Placement Policy.

• To hold three weeks of out-of-season sports practice for the 2019-2020 season, effective June 10 through June 28.

• The following volunteer coaches for the 2019-2020 season: Crystal Kerr as volunteer assistant cheerleading coach at PCHS; Chloe Bland as volunteer assistant girls basketball coach at PCHS; Devan Simmons and Stephanie Burns as volunteer seventh and eighth grade cheerleading coaches at PCHS; and Kevin Stitzinger as head cross country track coach at PCHS.

• To adopt the following social studies textbooks: Sixth grade: United States History, Civics and Economy by McGraw Hill; seventh grade: Discovering Our Past: A History of the World; Early Ages by McGraw Hill; ninth grade: World History by McGraw Hill; 10th and 11th grade: American History by Houghton Mifflin; 12th grade: Civics by Houghton Mifflin; and preschool: The Creative Curriculum by Teaching Strategies, Inc.

In personnel management, the board approved the following:

• Consent to change Katherine A. LaFleur from Title I reading specialist at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School to Title I reading specialist/teacher of multi-subjects at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School – teaching no more than one period of self-contained instruction per day – effective for the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment shall remain 20 days per year.

• Consent to change Leah Shinaberry from librarian/ media specialist at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School to librarian/media specialist/teacher of mathematics at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School – teaching no more than two periods of mathematics per day – effective for the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment shall remain 200 days per year.

• Consent to change Melissa Taylor from teacher of multi-subjects, first grade, at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School to teacher of multi-subjects, fourth grade, at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, effective for the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment shall remain 200 days per year.

• Unpaid medical leave of Stacy Landis as teacher of science at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, effective April 29 through the end of the 2018-2019 school year.

• Reduction in force of Sarah C. Brown as half-time Title I reading specialist at Hillsboro Elementary School, due to lack of funding, effective at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.

• Reduction in force of Peggy M. Owens as half-time teacher of multi-subjects at Hillsboro Elementary School, due to lack of funding, effective at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.

• Consent to change Rebecca A. Spencer from principal/teacher at Hillsboro Elementary School to principal/teacher of multi-subjects, Title I services, at Hillsboro Elementary School, effective for the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment shall remain 220 days.

• Employment of Barbara L. Siers as mentor at Hillsboro Elementary School, retroactive to the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year, at $20 per hour, not to exceed $1,000.

• Consent to change Kristy L. Tankersley from Title I reading specialist at Marlinton Elementary School to Title I reading specialist/teacher of multi-subjects at Marlinton Elementary School – teaching no more than one period of self-contained instruction per day – effective for the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment shall remain 200 days per year.

• Consent to change Sharla G. Sherman from half-time librarian/media specialist at Marlinton Middle School to teacher of half-time English/language arts/librarian/media specialist at Marlinton Middle School, effective for the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment shall remain 200 one-half days.

• Reduction in force of Lori A. Doolittle as truancy diversion specialist for Pocahontas County Schools, due to lack of funding, effective at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.

• Transfer of Felicia L. Smith from itinerant special education classroom aide/bus aide at Marlinton Middle School to itinerant special education classroom aide/bus aide at Marlinton Middle School and Hillsboro Elementary School, effective for the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment shall remain 200 days per year.

• Employment of Christine Campbell as substitute teacher for Pocahontas County Schools, effective April 10, as needed, for the remainder of the 2018-2019 school year, at state basic pay.

• Employment of the following coaches at Pocahontas County High School, effective for the 2019-2020 season, at supplement indicated. All positions contingent upon sufficient number of players to make a team.

– Douglas Burns, head football coach, $2,000

– Matthew Buzzard, assistant football coach, $500

– Lawrence Kiner, assistant football coach, $500

– Aaron Pugh, assistant football coach, $500

– Shannon Arbogast, head boys and girls soccer coach, $3,000

– Darlene Arbogast, fall and spring cheerleading coach, $1,500

– James Casteel, seventh and eighth grade football coach, $750

– Justin Kerr, seventh and eighth grade assistant football coach, $500

– J. Michael Kane, head girls basketball coach, $1,650

– Allen Taylor, assistant girls basketball coach, $500

– Scott Garber, head boys basketball coach, $1,650

– Justin Kerr, head softball coach, $750

– Randall Irvine, head baseball coach, $750

– Jessica Shinaberry, athletic trainer, $2,500

• Employment of Joshua Abbott and Aaron Pugh as girls track coaches at Pocahontas County High School, effective for the 2019-2020 season, at a supplement of $750. Position to be divided equally among three individuals. Third individual to be named at a later date.

• Employment of Joshua Abbott and Aaron Pugh as boys track coaches at Pocahontas County High School, effective for the 2019-2020 season, at a supplement of $750. Position to be divided equally among three individuals. Third individual to be named at a later date.

• Employment of Richard F. McLaughlin as assistant band director at Pocahontas County High School, effective for the 2019-2020 school year, at a supplement of $750.

The next board meeting is Monday, April 29, at 6 p.m., at the board of education conference room.

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