Which Comes First? The Bus or the Marlinton Middle School Basketball Players?

During the Delegations section of the Pocahontas County Board of Education’s January 28th meeting, two Marlinton Middle School Parents, Brad Dunz and Burl Burns, questioned why that school’s basketball team does not get a school bus to travel to away games, but the Green Bank Middle School Basketball team does get to ride school buses to their games. After Transportation Director Ruth Bland explained that there are enough players at Green Bank to qualify for a school bus, but not enough players at Marlinton Middle to justify the expense. Dunz explained that if they had a bus available for the team, there would be more players, since a lot of parents are unable to drive their kids to the game until they get off work. He said some players don’t get to some games until 5 minutes before tip-off. Dunz and Burns also questioned why the Athletic fund at Marlinton Middle School is used to replace basketball hoops and repair the court floor. They believe the Board of Education should pay for those because all students use the basketball court, not just the basketball team.

In response, Marlinton Middle School Principal Dustin Lambert said the Athletic Fund cannot afford the thousands of dollars that it would cost to provide school busses to transport the boys’ and girls’ basketball teams to the games. He explained that the school’s Athletic Fund is already stretched too thin, citing extra expenses for basketball this year since the cost for referees for the games has risen by $20.00 per official this year, from $65.00 last year to $85.00 this year. Dunz said that he has great respect for Principal Lambert, but disagrees with the way he is managing the Athletic Fund.

Superintendent Beam said he would put Mr. Dunz on the next Board Meeting Agenda to discuss there issues further, and would provide him with the Green Bank budget for comparison.

In other actions, the Board approved routine bill payments, the January 4th employee payroll of $223,620.07 and other financial reports. They also approved raising the rate of reimbursement for official travel to fifty-eight cents per mile from 54.5 cents per mile. This rate is set by the Federal Government.

They placed policy BCBM on a 30-day comment period. This policy involves the agendas for the Board of Education meetings.

They approved 4 trips by the PCHS ProStart students for various seminars, competitions and visits to Culinary colleges.

They approved a personnel agenda, a summary of which can be found at the end of this story on our website.

During the Matters of the Board section, Member John burns suggested inviting new County Commissioner Walt Helmick to a Board meeting. The members discussed this and agreed that several Members should go to a Commission Meeting and see if the Board can work closer with the Commissioners to help solve some of the Board of Education’s financial issues.

Board President Joe Walker brought up several issues, including that the PCHS students would like to see a Nursing CTE class returned to the school.

The meeting ended with an Executive Session on a Personnel issue that would not require a vote at this meeting.



 January 28, 2019

 Professional and Service Personnel



Pocahontas County Schools


RETIREMENT:  Margaret Baker as Teacher of Art, Marlinton Middle School, effective at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.

RETIREMENT:  Lisa Dennison as Chile Nutrition Director and Alternative Education Teacher, effective at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.


Marlinton Middle School


EMPLOYMENT: jessie L. Sharp, as Head Basketball Coach (boys), effective for the 2018 -2019 season, at a supplement of $750.00. Retroactive to November 7, 2018.

EMPLOYMENT: Shannon Arbogast, as Head Basketball Coach (girls), effective for the 2018 -2019 season, at a supplement of $750.00. Retroactive to November 7, 2018.

Green Bank Elem./Middle School

RETIREMENT:  Cheryl L. Nelson as Teacher of 4th Grade, effective at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.


Pocahontas County High School


EMPLOYMENT: Holly Beverage as Custodian IV/Sanitation Plant Operator, effective on January 30,2019. Shift 6:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

EMPLOYMENT: Jerald Ramos, as Itinerant Teacher of Special Education effective January 30,2019 for the remainder of the 2018 -2019 school year.


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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