Highland County School Board October Meeting

“Highland County Public Schools claims they are a bully-free zone, and take bullying very seriously. We have a complaint form, a bullying hotline, etc. But what happens after that?

In the handbook, there is a protocol to follow for bullying, which, from what we have witnessed, tends to be ignored. In most cases, believe it or not, the bully is defended. Techers are told, and while they make an attempt to share these problems with higher administration, teacher complaints are often disregarded.

As these problems continue to be ignored, they will proceed to get worse, and grow in numbers. While some of these bullying scenarios occur outside of school, it can affect the victim’s productivity within the school.”

That speaker is Highland High School Senior Brianna Wimer, who along with two classmates, shared her comments before the Highland County School Board during their regular October meeting Monday evening. Ms. Wimer did not elaborate on further details, either during or after the meeting, other than saying what had spurred the students to comment was a recent occurrence. School administration did make plans to speak with her and her classmates as soon as possible.

During the meeting itself, the Board received updates for the elementary, middle and high schools. The elementary school is coordinating with the Recreation Department for a Trunk or Treat event, as well as planning a Veterans Day program. High school fall sports are wrapping up, and Principal Tim Good noted that the final pieces for the baseball field fence are on site and ready to be installed, and also that the modular unit has been reconfigured to use as the school weight room facility.

The FFA will be traveling to the national convention the last week in October.

Mr. Good also reported that school admin are attending trainings to improve school attendance, that 4 students, Cami Carpenter, Zalea Good, Emma Summers and Autumn Warner had been inducted into the National Honor Society, and that the Highland Mid-Kids Radio Club has twenty-five members this year, along with 5 high school students who are forming an alumni club.

Superintendent Dr. Drew Maerz reported that starting October 1st, Lynn Liardi returned as special education director.

The Board approved the consent agenda, a transfer request as discussed in closed session, along with the coaches for upcoming sports seasons – Thomas Moore for boys high school basketball, Capitola Jackson for girls high school basketball, with Megan Botkin as assistant coach, Ann Foster for the dance/cheerleader squads, with Ashley Hutchinson as assistant coah, and Cane Sampson as middle school basketball coach.

They also approved three food service related policies, and the return to school plan, and reviewed a number of other policy changes.

Lastly, they approved a request by elementary administrator Nicole Cabral to consolidate grant requests for Titles I, II, III and IV, which support teachers and education.

The Board’s next meeting will be November 10th, at 7:00 pm in the high School library.

Story By

Scott Smith

Scott Smith is the General Manager for Allegheny Mountain Radio and Station Coordinator and News Reporter for WVLS. Scott’s family has deep roots in Highland County. While he did not grow up here, he spent as much time as possible on the family farm, and eventually moved to Highland to continue the tradition, which he still pursues with his cousin. Unfortunately, farming doesn’t pay all the bills, so he has previously taken other jobs to support his farming hobby, including pressman/writer for The Recorder, and Ag Projects Coordinator for The Highland Center. He lives in Hightown with wife Michelle and son Ethan. In his spare time, he wishes he had more spare time, especially to ride his prized Harley-Davidson motorcycle. scott@amrmail.org

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