Highlights of the June 14, 2021 Board of Education meeting

Knox County Board of Education

With the end of the fiscal year set for June 30, the Board took several actions concerning bids and services, agreements between agencies, and policies and procedures for the 2021-2022 academic year.  The Board meeting also marked the end of Mr. Kelly Sprinkles’ eight year service to KCPS as superintendent of schools.

Communication Items

Mr. Frank Shelton first spoke, noting that he was a connecting bridge between starting the communication portion of the meeting and turning the recognition over to board chairman Dr. Ashburn to complete.  In the short message, Shelton quoted Sprinkles’ wife Amy who earlier in the meeting said, “this is your last one, enjoy it.”  He continued to pay his own personal thanks to Sprinkles for the road that they traveled through his eight years and the leadership growth opportunities that Sprinkles provided him with.  Dr. Thomas Asburn, board chairman, presented the outgoing superintendent with a plaque that summarized Sprinkles’ tenure in KCPS.  The plaque read, “substitute to teacher, principal to superintendent, lifelong learner and friend.”  It also paid tribute to the mission statement that was developed at the beginning of his term, “Inspiring Leaders and Changing Futures, One Child at a Time…”

Dr. Thomas Ashburn echoed what Shelton said about it being a road traveled as he shared remarks.  “We appreciate the dedication and the work, sweat, tears, the hard work that you’ve done over the past eight years for our county and twenty eight years for the entire county.  We appreciate your leadership and all you have done for us.”

Sprinkles shown with board members with a plaque presented in his honor.

Sprinkles recalled that his very job was a substitute in a preschool classroom at Girdler Elementary, his wife’s classroom.  “I told her, I never, never, do your job.  After that, I got to spend five and half years at the school I grew up in, Boone School, as a seven and eight grade teacher.  Love that school, it’s the community that I grew up in.”

Sprinkles went on to recall his roles of principal at Dewitt, Lay, and the very first principal of Knox County Middle School when it opened.  “One of the most rewarding moments was starting a school from scratch,” he went on to say, sharing the development of culture for the new middle school.

“Eight years ago, I had this opportunity to be superintendent.  It was definitely an opportunity of a lifetime,” said Sprinkles. “[…] it had its challenges, but anything worthwhile will always have it’s challenges.”

What is the most memorable thing about his time as superintendent?  “That’s easy.  When I go out in the community today and I see former students […] are now contributors to our community. […] When I see all of the teachers that have been in our system or been through me or one of my roles is very encouraging.  When you see the impact that your work, and your team’s work, has on the community.”

His closing remarks were “I want to thank this board.  I told Mr. Ledford from day one, you are getting an excellent board to work with.  I know you very well and I know where your heart is.”

 Highlights of Action Items

  • Construction updates from Scott Noel including approval of Buildings & Grounds documents for the Lynn Camp Greenhouse project and the Knox County Middle School HVAC project;
  • Renewal of property, fleet, general liability, cyber coverage and educator’s legal liability policies;
  • Copier contracts and purchase agreements;
  • Bids for supplies and services for the upcoming year. A complete copy of awarded bids will be posted on the KCPS website;
  • Several financial items including bonding, restriction of funds for sick leave that is payable, federal cash assurance, revision of athletic fees and KETS technology offer of assistance;
  • First reading of the student handbook, policy and procedures updates, leave affidavit procedures, and hiring procedures;
  • Agreements to continue Math Achievement and Read to Achieve services;
  • A revised agreement between Barbourville and Knox for the CTC services, salary schedules, and job descriptions for the CTC employees;
  • Established sponsors for Student Technology Leadership Program (STLP) at each school;
  • and approved the creation of one LBD teacher at Knox Central High School.

This is an informational and abbreviated briefing on actions by the Knox County Board of Education on June 14, 2021.  Official minutes will be approved at the Board’s July meeting.  For more information including meeting dates and public comment opportunities, visit the Board of Education page on the KCPS website at www.knoxkyschools.com

A copy of the agenda is available as a PDF download.