At Wednesday night’s Pocahontas County Board of Education meeting, Pocahontas County High School assistant principal and athletic director Kristy Tritapoe addressed rumors concerning the school’s athletic department.
Tritapoe said, despite the rumors, she does not plan to cut any sports teams from the athletic department. She explained that she and principal Joe Riley recently met with coaches to discuss the athletic department’s financial situation, but reiterated that no sports were to be cut.
“I’m not here to cut any athletic program at the high school,” Tritapoe said. “We aren’t coming to the board to cut any program, just to express concern about the spring sports that are going to be coming up.”
Tritapoe had a spreadsheet showing how much money is in the athletic general fund, as well as the individual sports funds for football, basketball, baseball and softball. She explained that each sport that hosts games at PCHS has its own fund, and the general fund is used to pay officials and replace equipment or uniforms, as needed.
“The general fund pays for uniforms, any equipment that the sports programs need for every sport program – it’s not just one,” she said. “We pay for the balls, athletic tape, things like that. The funds that each sport has pays for their busing. They also pay if they want extra shirts and things like that.”
Each sport keeps the money made through fundraisers and the concessions at their home games. Gate money – the fees paid to attend the games – goes into the general fund.
While football and basketball are in good standing, Tritapoe said that baseball and softball do not make as much money, which has led to her concern.
Tritapoe said she must have at least $6,000 in the general fund to begin the fall season next year, and she is concerned the spring season will not make enough money to ensure the fund is sufficient.
“What my concern is, we didn’t do the Greenbrier Classic due to the flooding, so we didn’t get that money,” she said. “At the end of the year in June, I have to have at least six thousand dollars in that general fund. If I don’t have that, then I don’t have the money to start the fall sports programs, because there’s not going to be money in there for those things.”
At this time, the general fund has $11,499.44. Tritapoe said she will use that fund to pay basketball officials and the general fund usually gives funding to the football team for buses.
“What’s not been taken out of that yet, I hate to say this, the general fund pays for the football buses because football brings in a lot of money for us, so the general fund does pay for football transportation,” Tritapoe said. “When I take the money out of that fund for the buses for football, there’s not going to be a lot of money in there to cover basketball officials right off the bat.”
Tritapoe said the track and golf teams are both self-sufficient and fundraise for all their needs. The general fund bought track uniforms last year, but since neither of the teams host meets at PCHS, they do not need funding for officials.
There have been suggestions that the teams don’t use buses to travel to away games and instead, drive themselves, but the consensus is it is easier to ensure all team members arrive at the game if they ride the bus together.
“It used to be that the individual sports paid for their own officials, their own transportation, everything, and if they aren’t going to take buses and they are going to have more money, then we might think about going back to that because it’s not going to put any money into the fund that I need to pay for the officials and all the equipment.”
Tritapoe said she will know by February if she there will be enough money to start the fall season.
The board asked her to keep them informed on the issue and if there are any changes to the athletic funds.
• Senator Greg Boso addressed the board just one day after being re-elected to his seat in the state senate.
Boso told the board he is looking forward to working with the education system in Pocahontas County, and he is willing to help in any way he can.
“I want you to know that I am committed to education, making sure that we’re doing the things necessary to see that our children receive the best education possible here in West Virginia,” Boso said. “I’m committed to making sure we provide the best education affordable within our local communities.”
• Superintendent Terrence Beam said he asked principals to provide special recognitions for him to share with the board at meetings. Beam had a list of students from Marlinton Middle School who won in the county Literary Fair.
Realistic fiction: first place, Haley Spencer; second place, Jazzlyn Teter; and third place, Jared Friel. Realistic fiction, group: second place, Landon Gibson and Dakota Snider; and third place, Alison Alderman and Haley Hayhurst-Smith. Historical fiction: first place, Connor Spencer. Fantasy and Fairy Tales: first place, Eden Lester and Lilly Stevens. Adventure: first place, Ryan Roy.
Beam also thanked the members of the School Levy Committe for their dedication and time in working hard to get the levy passed in the recent election.
Although the levy failed, Beam said the committee put in a lot of hours and he was grateful for their work.
In miscellaneous management, the board approved the following:
• Contractual Arrangement for the placement of teacher candidates and other school professionals between Marshall University and Pocahontas County Board of Education.
• To purchase, with Pocahontas County High School carpentry class funds, a 2017 Homesteader Challenger from Tri-County Trailers, Beaver, at a cost not to exceed $2,979.98.
• Wanda Hrabina and Stephanie Poppe to transport eight students to West Virginia State Geography Bee November 11-12, at Concord University.
• Leah Shinaberry to travel to Waltham, Massachusetts, December 2 to attend Better Math Teaching Network conference. All expenses to be paid for by Better Math Teaching Network grant.
• Chloe L. Bland as volunteer assistant girls basketball coach at Pocahontas County High School, effective for the 2016-2017 season.
• Michael L. Burns as volunteer assistant boys basketball coach at Marlinton Middle School, effective for the 2016-2017 season.
• Chasity Taylor as volunteer assistant boys basketball coach at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, effective for the 2016-2017 season, contingent upon completion of WVSSAC courses and authorization by West Virginia Department of Education.
In personnel management, the board approved the following:
• Requested transfer of Corey A. Friel from custodian III at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School to custodian IV/sanitation plant operator at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, at state basic pay, effective November 14, for the remainder of the 2016-2017 school year. Term of employment is 165 days. Term of employment shall be 261 days each year thereafter.
• Employment of Derek Taylor as boys basketball coach at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, effective for the 2016-2017 season, contingent upon authorization by the West Virginia Department of Education, at a supplement of $750.
• Resignation of Karen Murphy as ELA/Enrichment instructor, Project SPLASH, at Green Bank Elementary-Middle School, retroactive to October 19.
• Employment of Dustin L. Lambert as athletic director at Marlinton Middle School, effective for the 2016-2017 season, at a supplement of $750.
• Employment of Emma C. Sculthorpe as teacher of science at Pocahontas County High School, at state basic salary based on degree and experience, effective November 10, for the remainder of the 2016-2017 school year, term of employment 134 days. Term of employment shall be 200 days each year thereafter.
• Employment of Cory A. McNabb as assistant boys basketball coach at Pocahontas County High School, effective for the 2016-2017 season at a supplement of $500.
• Requested transfer of Jared S. Bennett from teacher of Reading/English/ Language Arts at Marlinton Middle School to coordinator of teaching and learning for Pocahontas County Schools, at state basic salary based on degree and experience, term of employment is 148.5 days. Term of employment shall be 240 days each year thereafter.
• Employment of Sherry Mullens as substitute aide for Pocahontas County Schools, effective November 14, as needed, for the remainder of the 2016-2017 school year, at state basic pay.
The next board meeting will be Monday, November 28, at 6 p.m, at the board of education conference room.
Suzanne Stewart may be contacted at email@example.com