Pocahontas Board of Education Bids Farewell to Departing Members

During their 8:00 am, June 29th special meeting, the Pocahontas County Board of Education wrapped up some financial matters and other fiscal year ending business before the 2020-2021 fiscal year begins on July 1.

The three members of the board who will be remaining in office, and School Superintendent Terrence Beam paid tribute to the two members who will not – Member Becky Campbell and Board President Joe Walker.  Campbell had decided to not run for reelection, and Walker lost his bid for reelection. While each of the members thanked the two for their service, Beam’s tribute to Joe Walker was particularly stirring and noteworthy.

Directing his comments to Walker, Beam said: “I know you don’t want me to say anything, but I am going to say it anyway. Since you have been on the board -working with you for the last few years, we’ve gotten to have a lot of discussions. You’ve been so involved in what goes on in the school system, especially since you became President of the Board. And what you’ve provided to our school system is not measurable.”

“I don’t understand elections…I don’t understand a lot of things, but I assure you, there is nothing you have done that hasn’t been of benefit to our kids.  We’ve bit ourselves off a lot of stuff off for the last several years, but every decision you’ve made is about how we can help our kids. And I just want to thank you publicly for your service. I haven’t known any other board member who has spent as much time. I mean, they care just as much, but you’ve just absolutely gone above and beyond the responsibilities of your duties, to get involved personally with kids and to sit down and talk with teachers and you have brought a multitude of things not only to this board, but you have called me about things you have heard, just want to know what’s going on.  That communication has been invaluable. And you’ve helped me out a lot and been a big supporter of mine, and I am extremely grateful for it. And, don’t make yourself a stranger!”

Beam also announced that the CEFP committee will hold a meeting after the Fourth of July holiday, and that they will be meeting the July 10th deadline to apply for a Major Improvement Project to have a replacement sprinkler system installed in Marlinton Elementary School.

Beam said he is creating a reentry committee consisting of about twenty-five people to come up with ideas about how to safely restart school this coming school year. That committee will hold an organizational meeting on July 9th and will appoint subcommittees to consider reopening issues such as:

  • Transportation
  • Technology
  • Academics
  • Food Service
  • Maintenance & cleanliness of facilities

He also announced that the Pocahontas Schools will likely be invited to join 15 other county school systems in the state’s Community in Schools Program which will bring Three hundred and eighty-five thousand dollars ($385,000) over the next two years to the schools which will target 3 schools – one elementary school, one Middle School and PCHS in order to connect students with community members to help them graduate.

They approved a memorandum of agreement with Glenville State College to increase dual credit courses and offer an opportunity for PCHS students to actually obtain an Associates of Arts Degree in in General Studies in addition to their high school diplomas when they graduate.

They also approved an agreement drawn up by their attorneys that would allow Jacob Meck limited use of a small portion of the board’s Green Bank property.

In a final action, the board approved a proposed personnel agenda which can be found below.

 

Approved Personnel Agenda:

  • The resignation of JEANNETT SHARP as Custodian III (half-time) at Hillsboro Elementary School effective June 30, 2020.
  • The creation of the position of Itinerant Special Education Classroom Aide (half-time) /Custodian III (half Time) at Hillsboro elementary School effective for the coming school year.
  • The employment of CALLIE SAMS as a Teacher of Science/Biology at PCHS effective for the coming school year.
  • The appointment of JUSTINE M. DILLEY as a volunteer coach for the soccer program at PCHS.
  • The employment of DOTTIE CHECTNUT as an Itinerant Special Education Classroom Aide/ Bus Aide assigned to PCHS.
  • The employment of DOUGLAS A. LANTZ as Athletic Trainer for Pocahontas County Schools effective for the coming school year at a supplement of $3,750.00
  • The employment of LYNNE R. BOSTIC as Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Federal Programs for the Pocahontas County Schools effective for the coming school year, with 50% of salary paid for with Federal funds.
  • The resignation of MORGAN G. McCOMB AS Substitute Aide, Substitute Cook, Substitute Custodian, Substitute Maintenance for the schools retroactive to June 22, 2020.

The next Board of Education meeting will be held on Monday, July 6th beginning at 8:00 AM at the Board Office Conference room in Buckeye, WV.

Story By

Tim Walker

Tim is the WVMR News Reporter. Tim is a native of Maryland who started coming to Pocahontas County in the 1970’s as a caver. He bought land on Droop Mountain off Jacox Road in 1976 and built a small house there in the early 80’s. While still working in Maryland, Tim spent much time at his place which is located on the Friars Hole Cave Preserve. Retiring in 2011 as a Lieutenant with the Anne Arundel County Police Department in Maryland, Tim finally took the plunge and moved from Maryland to his real home on Droop Mountain. He began working as the Pocahontas County Reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio in January of 2015.

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