Marlinton Elementary School and Marlinton Middle School Community in Schools coordinator Jeanette Wagner gave a presentation on the county’s Family Advisory Committee at the October 24 Pocahontas County Board of Education meeting.
Wagner explained that the FAC is a way for the schools to improve family engagement at all the schools. Programs such as Community in Schools and Title I are working with community partners like Family Resource Network to create programs and activities to help families feel more comfortable with coming to school events and volunteering to work with students.
Included in the programs is one Wagner created where family volunteers are called student support. Those who have signed up to volunteer in the schools will have badges they wear at the school to identify them as support. Wagner said she is also working on a peer support badge for students who wish to help.
“[The Family Advisory Committee] is comprised of our directors – Julie Shiflet and Kristy Tritapoe,” Wagner said. ‘We also have Community in Schools, all the Title I reading specialists and some parents from each school.”
One of the new initiatives the committee is working to implement in the schools is the Olweus Anti-Bullying Initiative. The program was founded by Dan Olweus, a research professor of psychology at the University of Bergen, Norway. It offers practical, step-by-step instruction on how to prevent bullying on a school and community level.
The board thanked Wagner for her presentation and the work put into forming the committee.
Maintenance worker Jamie Walker addressed the board with his concern over four supplements that were approved at the September 19 board meeting which added up to $11,000. The chief mechanic, two technology coordinators and the supervisor of maintenance were the recipients of the supplements.
“I’m not saying that everybody doesn’t do good work,” he said. “I’m just here to ask what qualifies you to be in that category and what classifies you to be thrown under the table and forgot about.”
Board president Sue Hollandsworth explained that the four individuals who received the supplements are in supervisory positions, but their wages had not been in line with supervisory wages.
Walker said he spoke to four of the five board members and superintendent Lynne Bostic, who told him the same thing. He said he was concerned, however, that when he spoke to the board members, all four gave different answers as to why the supplements were given.
Walker also questioned the job classifications of the maintenance workers and said that while his job states he is to assist and be supervised, there are many times he is working alone and doing all the work, from ordering the materials to installing the materials.
Hollandsworth told Wal-ker he needed to have a conversation with Duane Gibson, director of maintenance, to further discussion his concerns.
In financial management, the board approved:
• Payment of vendor listing, payment of local government purchasing card, employee payroll, extra duty pay for the month of September 2023, bank reconciliation for the month of August 2023, grant awards, budget adjustments and carry over accounts.
In miscellaneous management, the board approved:
• Memorandum of Understanding between School Days LLC, of Pocahontas County and the Pocahontas County Board of Education offering a service agreement to provide preschool services for the 2023-2024 school year.
• Memorandum of Understanding between Schools Days LLC and the Pocahontas County Board of Education for food nutrition.
• Memorandum of Understanding between WVU Board of Governors on behalf of WVU and its College of Applied Human Sciences, School of Education and Pocahontas County Schools.
• Memorandum of Understanding between Grow Your Own West Virginia Pathway to Teaching and Pocahontas County Schools for the 2023-2024 school year.
• Approval for the robotics team to travel overnight on the following dates, to compete in VEX Robotics Competition. All funding from Pocahontas County High School STEM Club: November 10-11, Brooke High School; January 19-20, 2024, Ripley High School; February 16-17, 2024, WVU; and pending qualification, March 9-10, 2024, West Virginia States in Fairmont.
• Accept the settlement for Altria – vaping lawsuit – minus the attached fees.
• Parent and community volunteers.
In personnel management, the board approved:
• Employment of Kaylea Kelley as head girls basketball coach at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, for the 2023-2024 athletic season, at a supplement of $1,125.
• Change of effective date for resignation of Jim Weber as teacher of special education, multi-categorical/ autism at Marlinton Elementary School, from October 31 to November 1.
• Request to transfer Krysal Sharek Beers as teacher of special education, multi-categorical/autism at Marlinton Elementary School, effective November 1, for 145 days, for the remainder of the 2023-2024 school year. Term of employment will be 200 days for each year thereafter.
• Jeanette Wagner as assistant volunteer boys basketball coach for Marlinton Middle School for the 2023-2024 athletic season.
• Employment of James L. McCoy, Jr., as head softball coach for Pocahontas County High School for the 2023-2024 athletic season at a supplement of $1,125.
• Chloe Schaffner as assistant volunteer girls basketball coach for Pocahontas County High School, for the 2023-2024 athletic season.
• Employment of Whitney Beverage and Harriet Faulk-nier as substitute secretaries/accountants for Poca- hontas County Schools, at state minimum service personnel salary, for the 2023-2024 school year.
• Employment of Noah Pugh as school bus operator for Pocahontas County Schools, at state minimum service personnel salary, effective for the remainder of the 2023-2024 school year, at a term of employment of 162 days, retroactive to October 3. Term of employment shall be 200 days each year thereafter.
• Employment of Mary Sue Burns as part-time classroom instructional support coach for Pocahontas County Schools at $25 per hour, not to exceed $5,000, funded by Title IV, effective for the 2023-2024 school year.
• Employment of Ronald Plaugher and Thomas Dennison of substitute teachers for Pocahontas County Schools, at state basic professional salary, based on degree and experience, for the 2023-2024 school year, as needed.
• Creation of position extra-curricular school bus operator for gifted program, $60 per day, as needed, for the remainder of the 2023-2024 school year.