Suzanne Stewart
Staff Writer
 
After meeting with students and teachers at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School Tuesday afternoon for the Local School Improvement Council, the Pocahontas County Board of Education conducted its regular meeting with updates from Superintendent Terrence Beam and student representative Emmet Doolittle.

Before getting into business, the board had a moment of silence for Marlinton Middle School student Colten Luikart, who passed away September 29. The board also expressed its collective sympathy to the Luikart family and the student body.

In his report, Beam shared information on a new program provided by Radford University called ASSET –Appalachian Support for Specialist Education Training. Beam said Pocahontas County Schools has signed on to the program to help teachers with their continuing education. 

“It’s absolutely free,” he said. “It’s a grant through the federal government. It’s designed to assist teachers in Appalachia on a first come, first served basis, to receive this free information and training. Right now it is geared more for elementary than middle and high school teachers.” 

Beam spoke to Matt Dunleavy, who heads the program, and he said the program will hopefully grow to include training for middle and high school teachers in the future.

 The program had 700 slots available and Beam committed the county to 90 spots. He shared information with the principals to give to the teachers in order for them to sign up and take advantage of the free program. 

“The program seems to be very well liked by the teachers,” Beam said.

Pocahontas County High School student representative Doolittle gave a brief report on the success of Spirit Week and Homecoming.

“We had a parade that week which was really nice and had community involvement,” he said. “National Honor Society – before the game Friday – did some beautification projects in and around the school and picked up trash down on the field, and weedeated the steps going down from the school.” 

As for Spirit Week, Doolittle said the freshman won the week, but the seniors were victorious in the Powder Puff game. The football team was also successful against Richwood High School with a final score of 41-12. 

Doolittle added that a group of students traveled to the Greenbrier Valley Theatre to see the play, The Diary of Anne Frank; and the Tourism Club took a trip to Snowshoe Mountain Resort. 

In miscellaneous management, the board approved the following:
 
• Travel requests: Marlinton Elementary School fifth grade students to travel by chartered bus to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, May 13 through 15, 2020. Trip to be paid for by fundraising.

– Five members of the Pocahontas County High School FFA to travel to National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana, October 29 through November 1.

– Green Bank Elementary-Middle School seventh grade students to travel by school bus to The Mountain Institute in Circleville, November 4 and 5. 

• To place Policy DJD – Expense Reimbursement Policy on 30-day comment period.

• Agreement for services between Pocahontas County Board of Education and Success For All Foundation, Inc., retroactive to July 1, per the terms of the agreement. 

• Marty Bloss, volunteer co-teacher of the HAM Radio Class at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, to mount antennas on school grounds for class purposes. 

• Paul Marganian as volunteer robotics coach at Pocahontas County High School, effective for the 2019-2020 school year.
 
•  Dustin and Devan Simmons as volunteer middle and high school archery coaches, for Pocahontas County Schools, effective for the 2019-2020 season. 

• Parent and community volunteers for the 2019-2020 school year.

In personnel management, the board approved the following 

• Employment of Chasity Taylor and Derek Taylor as girls basketball coaches at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, effective for the 2019-2020 season, at a supplement of $750, to be divided equally between two individuals. 

• Melissa Nelson as girls basketball coach at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, effective for the 2019-2020 season, at a supplement of $750.
 
• Resignation of James “Bo” Casteel as seventh and eighth grade football coach at Pocahontas County High School, retroactive to September 12. 

• Employment of Justin M. Kerr as seventh and eighth grade football coach at Pocahontas County School, retroactive to September 12, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 season, at a prorated supplement of $450. Standard supplement for this position is $750.
 
• Employment of Anita G. Mills as mentor for Nebraska B. Scotchie, at $20 per hour, not to exceed 50 hours or $1,000 for the 2019-2020 school year. 

• Requested transfer of Evan E. Rose as school bus operator for Pocahontas County Schools, from current route to a new route, effective October 2, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, at state basic pay.

• Employment of Scott Kelley as school bus operator – extracurricular, for Pocahontas County Schools, effective October 8, at $50 per run, one run per week, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.

• Employment of M. Lois McCutcheon as substitute teacher for Pocahontas County Schools, at state basic pay based on degree and experience, as needed, for the 2019-2020 school year.

• Employment of Sarah Cover, Kimberly Beverage and Jennifer “Nicole” Brock, as substitute aides for Pocahontas County Schools, effective October 3, as needed, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, at state basic pay. 

• Employment of Kimberly Beverage and Deanna Gladwell as substitute cooks for Pocahontas County Schools, effective October 3, as needed, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, at state basic pay.

• Employment of Deanna Gladwell as substitute custodian for Pocahontas County Schools, effective October 3, as needed, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, at state basic pay.

• Employment of Kevin Thompson as substitute maintenance for Pocahontas County Schools, effective October 3, as needed, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, at state basic pay.
 
• Employment of Susan Ray and Teresa Rhea as substitute secretaries/accountants for Pocahontas County Schools, effective October 3, as needed, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, at state basic pay.

• Creation of position itinerant special education aide/classroom aide/bus aide at Marlinton Elementary School, at state basic pay, effective October 24, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment is 147 days. Term of employment shall be 200 days each year thereafter.
 
• Creation of position itinerant special education aide/classroom aide/bus aide at Marlinton Elementary School, at state basic pay, effective October 24, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment is 147 days. Position may be terminated at the end of the 2019-2020 school year.
 
• Creation of position itinerant special education aide/classroom aide/bus aid at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, at state basic pay, effective October 24, for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. Term of employment is 147 days. Position may be terminated at the end of the 2019-2020 school year.
 
The next board meeting will be Tuesday, October 22, beginning with a Local School Improvement Council at 3:30 p.m., at Pocahontas County High School.

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