Braxton Citizens' News, Schools

Donna Burge-Tetrick chosen to be next Superintendent of Braxton County Schools

During the recent budget hearing and special meeting held on May 25, the Braxton County Board of Education hired Dr. Donna Burge-Tetrick as Superintendent of Braxton County Schools. Her four-year contract begins July 1, 2023 and has a starting salary of $125,000 per year.

“I am truly honored to have this opportunity to serve as superintendent of Braxton County Schools, my alma mater,” stated Dr. Burge-Tetrick after the motion by Kevin Gregory approved her for the position.

Burge-Tetrick is a native of Braxton County where she served as Magistrate before pursuing her Doctorate Degree in Education. Most recently she has held the Superintendent’s position in Nicholas County.

The meeting opened with a public hearing on the 2023-2024 school year budget. Ginger Altizer, Director of Finance, reviewed the budget with board members. She noted 78% of all local funds go to salaries. This year’s legislation allowed for a salary increase of $2300 for each employee and increases to PEIA employer costs as well as other changes to PEIA. Unfortunately the compensation formula, showed a decrease of approximately $350,000 in funds provided by the state. Other increases in costs were with liability insurance and utilities. She reviewed many other changes and increases to the budget during the public hearing. The board approved the budget with changes discussed on a motion by Dr. Kenna Seal.

Superintendent Dr. Rhonda Combs gave an update to board members. She thanked the staff of Braxton County High School for their work on the graduation ceremony. She noted all of the end of the year activities at all of the schools.

She briefly reviewed the recent safety meeting held on May 24. The committee is looking at needs for safety and security including better supervision and accountability and issues with facilities.

Dr. Combs spoke about the preliminary results of the General Summative Assessment scores. She noted the out of the possible twelve areas (six grades-3rd thru 8th and two subject areas-ELA and math), nine saw increases in scores. Those that went down were only by one or two points. Linda Sears will be presenting the results at a future meeting.

She requested the board recognized the teacher of the year and the service personnel of the year at the June 27 meeting.

She noted the summer school would be starting in just a few of weeks.

Dr. Combs also stated she would be having a personnel discussion with the new superintendent to review the numbers before postings would be made for the upcoming school year.

In regular action, the board approved the following consent agenda items on a motion by Lisa Ratliff: May 12 special meeting minutes, May 16 regular meeting minutes, and May 18 special meeting minutes; budget transfers and supplements; and payment of bills.

The following personnel recommendations were approved by the board on a motion by Kevin Gregory: employment of Pamela Duffield, Title I teacher, Little Birch, Betty Singleton, KinderBoost teacher, summer school, Rebecca Oates and Juanita Michelle Jackson, KinderBoost/transportation aide, summer school, and John D. Drake, $1 football coach, BCHS; and resignation of Rick Garavaglia, head boys’ soccer coach, BCHS.

The following items were also approved by the board during the meeting on separate motions: fundraisers; add June 21, 2023 as regular board meeting date; permission to post for BCMS assistant girls’ basketball coach; and the 261 day calendar selected by staff.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:18 am. The next regular meeting is scheduled for June 6 at 6:00 pm. As always, members of the Braxton County community are encouraged to attend regular board meetings. Anyone wishing to speak as a delegate or with public concerns may do so by signing in up to 15 minutes prior to the start of the meeting.