Board Notes: Highlights of the January 27, 2022 Board Meeting

Knox County Board of Education

The first meeting of the calendar year was an organizational meeting for the Board of Education.  At the beginning of their meeting, members voted on a new chairman, vice chairman, and set dates for upcoming meetings in 2022 and January 2023.

Kevin Hinkle was unanimously elected board chairman,  Jimmy Hendrickson unanimously elected vice chairman, and the meeting dates were approved as presented following discussion on the February date, which was in conflict with the board’s winter conference.  The February date was decided to be one week earlier, February 17.  A complete list of meeting dates is available on the KCPS website.

Superintendent Jeremy Ledford is shown talking to board members.  Also shown are Carrie Runyon and Dr. Thomas Ashburn

District Facilities and Operations

A contract was awarded to Turfworx to provide chemical service treatment to athletic fields during the 2022 calendar year.  Turfworx was the only bid received and has been the service provider for several years.

Governance and Leadership

The Board was presented a plan by Superintendent Jeremy Ledford to reconfigure Lynn Camp Schools (Preschool-12) into two schools, Lynn Camp Elementary and Lynn Camp Middle High School.  The change would take effect beginning July 1.  The grade levels served in each school’s building will remain the same.  Each school will have a SBDM school based decision making council, a principal, assistant principal, and support staff for attendance, bookkeeping, and office receptionist.  A complete news release and information for Lynn Camp families will be released by the district.  The plan was approved as presented.

An update to the student field trip policy was approved as a one time reading as groups prepare for competition travel to state and national conferences.  The new policy will grant each school group, club, or organization an annual amount of $5,000 towards registration, lodging, travel, and food for out of region competitive events.  Sponsors may budget the amount as needed for state and/or national travel, however, no amount left over can be carried forward or distributed to a different group.  Previously, a $1 for $1 match up to $2,000 was policy.

Teaching and Learning

The Comprehensive District Improvement Plan for the year was approved as presented.  Stakeholder surveys and meetings were conducted in November and December to identify the key goals, objectives, and strategies that the district should focus on in order to see growth in academic success.  The plan will be available for public view on the KCPS website this week.

An assistant boys tennis coach position was approved at a salary of $1,000.  The assistant position was previously omitted on the athletic salary schedule.  A substitute salary schedule was created for attendance/administrative secretaries based on prior experience.

Resources and Support Systems / Other Items 

Superintendent Ledford shared with the Board tentative staffing allocations based on student enrollment at each school.  The student to teacher ratios, and support service personnel, have not changed.  Adjustments were made to the previous K-12 staffing for Lynn Camp Schools to mirror other elementary and high schools based on enrollment.  The Board voted in favor of the policy.

The district accepted an offer of assistance in the amount of $36,639 from the School Facilities Construction Commission which will go towards the district’s debts.

Two opportunities to bid were approved during the meeting.  The first was for a Internet / networking service provider to serve school campuses for 2022-2023.  The second was for a new vehicle to serve support programs at the district offices and other uses as needed.  The current fleet is near depreciation and would require major services to restore all needed parts.

The first draft budget for 2022-2023 was presented by finance officer Gertrude Smith.  Smith reviewed the budget which includes tentative increases from the legislature currently in session setting the two year state budget.

An agreement was entered to join Appalachian Educational Service Agency as one of sixteen school districts.  The agency is being formed by Partners for Education at Berea College as they separate from the college to become a local education agency.  This will allow the agency to apply for federal grants that would normally be difficult for a single rural district to be awarded.

An Executive Session was held and no action was taken.

Official minutes of the January 27 meeting including contracts approved will be available upon approval of minutes at the February 17 meeting.  The February 17 meeting will be held at the Board of Education Annex at 6:30 pm.

Related content:  School Board Recognized
Video and agenda from January 27, 2022 Meeting