Pocahontas BOE Members Intrigued by Energy Saving Plan Presented at Board Meeting

At the August 20th Pocahontas County Board of Education meeting, Andy Coccina of the Wendel Company, a lighting and energy conservation company, made a presentation about his company’s plan for energy saving opportunities for the Board of Education. Coccina said the basic idea is to use the utility bill savings that will be created by installing new and more efficient equipment to pay for that equipment. Although the Board has heard similar proposals in the past from other companies, Coccina explained that unlike those proposals, where the Board would surrender up to 60% of the savings for an indefinite time to pay for the upgrades, the Wendell proposal would charge for the for an investment grade audit to accurately determine just how much money would be saved by upgrading energy using systems such as replacing existing lights with energy efficient LED lights. They would also determine what the upgrades will cost.  Once those numbers are determined, the schools can either obtain financing to pay for both the audit and the upgraded energy systems, or use those figures as a match for a possible SBA grant to upgrade the systems. The payments on any financing would be paid by using part of the Board’s monthly utility bill savings while the remaining monthly utility savings belong to the Board. Once any financing is paid off, the Board keeps all of the monthly savings. The Board members seemed interested in this but need to put the issue on a future agenda for a vote.

Prior to the start of the meeting, Jason Long, the Board’s Attorney, conducted a training session for the benefit of new Board Members.

In his Superintendent’s Report, Terrence Beam said that enrollment in the school system has been declining, with 1065 students in the schools 2 years ago, 1029 last year and an estimated 1002 or 1003 this year. Beam also said that the bids for replacement of the fire alarm systems at Marlinton Elementary School and at Marlinton Middle School have been advertised.

During the Delegations portion of the meeting, Dottie Chestnut complained that she is being discriminated against because a prior incident which she did not specify for not being returned to her original seniority position on the Substitute Lists.

The new Student Representative to the Board, Taylor Tegmeyer, introduced himself as being a Senior at PCHS, a member of the National Honor Society and a volunteer at the libraries.

The Board heard a presentation from Shawn Dunbrack of the West Virginia Division of Homeland Security about the development of a family reunification plan to be used following any major tragic incident at any of the schools. He talked about having done a walk through at PCHS and Marlinton Middle School where recommendations were made to beef up security, and about an active shooter drill at Marlinton Middle School. He said that there are 6 pending Homeland Security Grants. Ron Hall added that because of the building design, “We will never secure PCHS.”

The Board held a discussion on the former Board of Education Building in Marlinton. Lauren Bennett of the County Parks and Recreation, which still uses part of the building for storage and large meetings, offered to pay the utilities on part of the building if allowed to continue to use part of it until the Board disposes of the building. The Board members were told that they must still pay the $14,000 flood insurance on the building even if it is left vacant. They Board asked the School Treasurer to obtain estimates of the cost to demolish the building.

The Board placed three policies on 30 day public comment, including one that would require a mandatory 365 day expulsion with no chance of reduction for assaulting a school employee, selling narcotic drugs at school or bringing a weapon to school property. Another policy would simplify the grading system so that an “A” would be 90% to 100%, a “B” from 80% to 89%, a “C” from 70% to 79%, a “D” from 60% to 69% and anything lower would be an “F.”

During the Maters of the Bard, there was a discussion about how to pay for and install a handicap ramp at the rear of PCHS as required by the Federal Government. The Board approved a personnel agenda which can be found on our website, and ended the meeting with an executive session on a personnel matter.



August 20, 2018

Professional and Service Personnel


Pocahontas County Schools:

REQUESTED TRANSFER:  REBECCA A. DAVIS, from Itinerant Special Education Classroom Aide/Bus Aide for Pocahontas County Schools (assignment: Marlinton Elementary School) to Itinerant Special Education Classroom Aide/Bus Aide for Pocahontas County Schools (assignment: Marlinton Middle School), effective August 21, 2018 for the remainder of the 2018-2019 school year, at state basic pay.

EMPLOYMENT:   EVAN ROSE, as School Bus Operator (Long-Term Substitute) for Pocahontas

County Schools, retroactive to August 15, 2018 for the remainder of the 2018-

2019 school year, or upon the return of the regular school bus operator, at

state basic pay, run as follows:

Morning Run: Beginning at Pocahontas County High School, turn right onto

Route 28 towards Dunmore, turn left onto Route 92, turn left onto Route 66

at Cass intersection to Big Springs of Elk, turn right onto Route 219 to Dry

Branch Road, turn left onto Dry Branch Road, turn the bus at the Mary Jane

Moses residence, travel out of Dry Branch Road, turn right onto Route 219 to

Big Springs of Elk, turn left onto Route 66, turn bus at the Ralph Beckwith

residence return to Route 66, turn left onto Route 219, travel to Marlinton

Elementary School, then onto Pocahontas County High School.

Afternoon Run: Reverse of morning run.

SNOW ROUTE: Beginning at Pocahontas County High School, turn left on

Route 28, travel to Route 39 proceeding to Route 219 North to the Par Mar

Store at Slatyfork. Students will meet the bus at the store. The bus will then

proceed back to Route 219 North to Route 39 to Marlinton Elementary School

and then on to Pocahontas County High School.


RESIGNATION:   SHAWN W. CARR, as School Bus Operator for Pocahontas County Schools,

retroactive to the end of the day on August 9, 2018.


EMPLOYMENT:  Of the following mentors, effective for the 2018-2019 school year, at $20 per

hour, not to exceed 50 hours, not to exceed $1,000:

Maria Hall mentoring Nicole Dilley

Mary Sue Burns mentoring Derek Trull (contingent upon completion of WVDE mentor training)

Mary Sue Burns mentoring Shanna Carr (contingent upon completion of the WVDE mentor training)

Jennifer Nail mentoring Lauren Goodwin (contingent upon completion of the WVDE mentor training)

Cathy Mitchell mentoring Seth Kiriluk

EMPLOYMENT:  Of the following Substitute Teachers for Pocahontas County Schools, effective

for the 2018-2019 school year, as needed, at state basic pay:

Susan Herold.

Mary Lois McCutcheon

David Moore, Jr.

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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