Bath School Board looks at Out of Doors

A meeting that began with much positive recognition and well-wishing on Tuesday evening evolved into fairly strenuous discussions about the possibility of investing in an artificial turf field at the high school, and the immediate need to address deferred maintenance to trees and shrubbery at Valley Elementary School, and the high school.
Shortly after the meeting came to order Sue Hirsh, Bath County Schools Superintendent, recognized teachers and staff with milestone numbers of years of service. Those with 10 years are: “Joey Crawford, Connie Forsyth, Heather Hough,
Harold Keyser and Ronnie Liptrap. . . .”said Hirsch.

Those with 20 years of service: “Ramona Garcia, Mindy Hooker, and Dawn Duncan.”
Those with 25 years of service: Karen Bowyer and Hilda Hensley,
And those with 35 years of service, Donna Armstrong, Debbie Chaplin and Sharon Madison.”
Hirsh continued with recognition of staff members who are retiring this year: “Mac” Byrd, “Timmy Black, Mary Criser, Dawn Duncan, Kim Lancaster, Carol Martin, and Sandy Ryder.
I’d also like to call to everyone’s attention the achievements of Millboro Elementary School in meeting the criteria for the Distinguished Achievement Award from what is called the Index of Performance in Virginia, so we congratulate the Millboro Staff on that milestone.”
Student representative Tanner Bradley gave a report on how the year is wrapping up for high school students, and Valley Elementary School Teacher, Margery Hevener described the highlights of the last month at Valley.
Following this, the board, school staff and community members in attendance gave full attention to Mr.Robert Thomas’s presentation about Pro Grass. This significant new topic will clearly involve lots of discussion, but also considerable fundraising if the county is serious about installing such a system. While Thomas mentioned such a field can actually become a source for generating revenue for the whole community, in the mean time, the price is right around 500 thousand dollars. He mentioned several opportunities for grants, and also referred to a very successful fundraising campaign by a West Virginia county with similarities to Bath. For more information on this product, and the company offering it, visit the Prograss website. Before too long, all county athletes who are interested will be able to sample what it feels like underfoot in new batting cage at Valley Elementary School.
The remainder of the meeting was dominated by discussion of exactly where fiber optic cable in conduit would run underneath the high school parking lot, and whether to prune, or cut down completely, three trees in front of Valley Elementary School. Paul Lancaster, Director of Technology and Administrative Services, patiently fielded questions on both topics. The board voted to grant the easement to MGW/Lingo Networks, the incoming Internet provider, with the condition it is only considered permanent as long as Lingo Networks remains the provider. They also voted three to two to follow the proposed tree and shrubbery trimming and removal plan that was estimated at around 10,000 dollars.
Please note the day and time for the close out school board meeting. It will be held Monday, June 22nd at 10:00 in the School Administration Building. The public is always encouraged to attend.

Story By

Bonnie Ralston

Bonnie Ralston is the Assistant Station Coordinator at WVLS and a Highland County news reporter. She began volunteering at Allegheny Mountain Radio in the fall of 2005. In 2006 she became an AMR employee and worked in Bath County for eight years as the WCHG Station Coordinator and then as the news reporter there. She began working in radio while in college and has stayed connected to radio, in one way or another, for more than thirty years. She grew up in Staunton, Virginia, while spending a lot of time on her family’s farm in Deerfield, Virginia. She enjoys spending time outside, watching old TV shows and movies and tending to her chickens.

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