Pocahontas County Board of Education Considers Addition to Hillsboro Library

One of the significant actions taken by the Pocahontas County Board of Education at their otherwise very short April 25th regular meeting was the request by the County Free Libraries to build an addition onto the Hillsboro Library. After much discussion and negotiation over the last several months, it finally came to a vote. Board President Emery Grimes.

“Approval for the Pocahontas County Free Libraries to work in cooperation with the Pocahontas County Board of Education to construct an addition to the building known as Hillsboro Public Library, owned by the Pocahontas County Board of Education” Grimes read off the meeting agenda. “All costs to be paid for by the Pocahontas County Free Libraries… (‘so moved’)…Mr. Tritapoe made the motion, do I have a second?… (‘Second’)… Ms. Hefner seconded it. We’ve discussed this with the Library Board the last time. All those in favor signify by saying Aye (all Board members signified ‘Aye’). Motion carries.”

As mentioned in an earlier story, the addition will provide a children’s reading room where Hillsboro Elementary Students can attend story telling without disturbing the main library patrons and office space for the Librarian.

Before the start of the meeting, there was a work session with the County Parks and Recreation Board and the Board of Education to discuss problems experienced recently inside and outside of the Wellness Center. The Wellness Center, like the Hillsboro Library, is owned by the Board of Education but is managed by another agency – Parks and Recreation in this case. The problems of concern to both Boards involved teenagers getting into fights among themselves and hanging out around the building and park grounds after hours. Both the Board of Education and the Parks Board agreed to work together to post signs in the outside areas closing the area after the Wellness center closes. They also discussed ways to ensure there are more adults present inside the gymnasium area of the Wellness Center during regular hours.

In other actions, the Board of Education discussed the Board’s 2016-2017 fiscal budget, which while almost complete, is still awaiting final monetary figures from some State and Federal agencies.

In his Superintendent’s Report to the Board, Mr. Beam said he has been meeting with several architect firms and reviewing their proposals to assist with the school building project which would be done if the school levy passes in November.

Ruth Bland, in her role of Director of Special Education, discussed some problems they have experienced with the Memorandum of Understanding with North-Central Community Action to provide Head Start services to approximately 20 children in the County. The problem involves changes to Federal program guidelines which will require changes to the Memorandum of Understanding.

The Board approved various financial transactions and reports, including accepting a bid from Scott Floor Company to sand and apply finish the gym floor at PCHS over the summer at a cost of $16,875. This was the lowest costing of the 3 bids received. That playing surface has badly needed re-sanding and refinishing.

The Board approved the adopting of text books for the next school year.

The Board approved a Parent Involvement Policy which will encourage a partnership between parents and the schools to improve parental involvement in their children’s education.

They also approved a policy to help ensure retired teachers can be employed as substitute teachers when critically needed.

The Board approved a short personnel Agenda, hiring Melissa Erwin Baldwin as an English/Language Arts/Reading teacher at Green Bank School for next school year, and hiring Daniel Mullens as a Social studies Teacher at Marlinton Middle School for next school year. They also approved Wanda Hrabina’s request to transfer from Teacher of Health/Social Studies at the High School to being a Teacher of Social Studies alone at the High School.

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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