Schools, The Braxton Democrat

Board Holds Final 2023 Meeting

The Braxton County Board of Education held their last meeting of 2023 on December 19.
The meeting opened with an update from Davis Elementary. Principal Michelle Winemiller discussed how the school was working on building relationships with students, staff, families and the community. She also talked about their goals of increasing reading and math scores, and decreasing absences.
Next to speak to board members was Susan Schiefer, CIS Coordinator at Sutton Elementary. She reviewed information she obtained recently on “Moving Poverty Schools to High Performing Schools.” The information is based on years of research conducted by Dr. William Parrett and Kathleen Budge. She briefly discussed the ten strategies for high performing schools and the five strategies for disrupting poverty. The board discussed possibly using professional learning funds to have a more comprehensive presentation done for all county staff on the subject.
Superintendent Dr. Donna Burge-Tetrick gave several updates to board members. First she thanked the Braxton County Rotary for their recent donation of $10,000 to purchase protective floor covering for the new gym floor to be used during special events.
Dr. Burge-Tetrick also thanked Mid State Automotive and Rodney LeRose for committing $30,000 towards the high school gym renovations. Those funds will be used to purchase backboards and the wall coverings. She stated more funds would be coming and work would begin in the spring on the athletic building at the Eagle Field.
The gym floor is down and the staining will be completed by the first of the year. The bleacher installation will begin around February 27. Dr. Leatha Williams is working on modernizing the audio system and getting quotes on a media wall to be set up above the cafeteria opening.
Dr. Burge-Tetrick informed the board the tourism program would be opening a coffee shop at the high school. The shop is a student led initiative and working in conjunction with the new food truck. The board approved the purchase of the food truck and the permission to travel to retrieve the truck on a motion by Larry Hardway. The truck was designed by BCHS students and the funds come from the $25,000 provided by an anonymous donor, $10,000 contribution by the Ohio Food Truck Company, and the remaining $1500 to be paid by board funds. Students and staff will travel to pick up the truck on December 20 and participate in a food truck cooking demonstration.
She stated she would like to have a special ribbon cutting for the gym renovations with an alumni basketball game. Dr. Burge-Tetrick also said she would like to possibly include the food truck as well.
She has worked with state on options for bus driver training. Currently, Braxton only has one trainer and he is currently out on medical leave. Lewis County has five trainers and will be able to help with the county’s bus training.
The superintendent requested the family of Patty Fussell be kept in prayers. She was a dedicated member of the school system and worked at Frametown Elementary for many years. Board President Evelyn Post requested a moment of silence in her honor.
She also gave updates on work at the bus garage. The new roof is in place and work is being completed on replacing the metal on the exterior walls.
Dr. Burge-Tetrick informed the board that work was being completed to fix the light at Frametown and the mulch has been spread on the playground.
Under regular business, the board approved the following consent agenda items on a motion by: Lisa Ratliff: minutes of the November 28 and December 5 meetings; budget transfers and supplements; treasurer’s report; and payment of bills.
The following personnel recommendations were approved on a motion by Dr. Kenna Seal after a brief executive session: employment of Caroline Tinnel, special education teacher, Abigail Long, first grade teacher, Burnsville, Jacob Long, substitute teacher, Courtney Mollohan, custodian, BCHS, Nathaniel Putnam, substitute bus operator, Anita Lambert, e-sports coach, BCMS, Meredith Hoover, after school site coordinator, Flatwoods, Jami Hefner and Lisa Dennison Brady, special education mentor teachers, and Catherine Connor, instructional interventionist, Little Birch; resignation of Jessica Cook, substitute custodian; and the absence of Jessica Ward from her position at Flatwoods.
The board conducted a second executive session from 7:32pm to 7:54pm to discuss a proposed settlement for the cell tower litigation. No decisions were made on the litigation.
Also approved by the board on separate motions were the following items: approval of Model Schools 2024 proposals for BCHS and Sutton; two MOUs with SESC to employ classroom facilitators and classroom assistants; the $6450 low bid from Rich’s Refrigeration for a heat exchanger for the BCHS gym; approval to post and hire one interventionist for Sutton; Leo Thomas, parent volunteer, BCMS; and the third and final reading of Policy 2403 Third Grade Success.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:20 pm. The next regular meeting is scheduled for January 9 at 6:00 pm.