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Highley Recommended — Hired As Tyler County Schools Superintendent

By Staff | May 29, 2019

By MADDISEN EIDEL

Staff Writer

The Tyler County Board of Education held a regular meeting on May 20 at Tyler Consolidated Middle/High School following a TCMS and TCHS LSIC Meeting. In attendance was Superintendent Robin Daquilante, and board members Linda Hoover, Katrina Byers, Dave Roberts, PJ Wells, and Larry Thomas.

The board meeting first began with the approval of the minutes from the May 6 regular meeting, and the April 18 Special Meeting. This approval was granted with a motion made by Wells and seconded by Thomas. The motion was carried.

Next on the agenda was a public budget hearing. Jeff Davis – Chief School Business Officer – explained they are legally required to hold this meeting in order to give an opportunity for the public to review and speak about the preliminary operating budget. However, there was no one from the public present for the hearing.

Following this, Daquilante announced news on the Summer Food Service Program. According to the superintendent, the Summer Food Program begins on June 10, and is open to the public. The board described this as a great program that offers a good lunch at only $3 for adults. All students eat for free.

Daquilante then delivered the Superintendent’s Report. She told the board the county calender and the plan for the snow packets had been approved. She said they are “in good shape” with the calender. Daquilante also said she had nothing new to report in regards to the legislature. However, it is believed that “education stuff” will begin after Memorial Day.

It was also said the Republican Speaker of House is contemplating complete elimination of chapter 18 and 18a, which covers education and school personnel. This would eliminate hiring practices, transfers, and seniority among other things. Many board members expressed this could be detrimental, and Daquilante said this change could make board races political.

A letter was drafted by the Superintendent’s Association and the Department of Education to the Speaker of House asking them to “tread cautiously.” Daquilante told the board she would provide them with a copy of this letter in order for them to better understand this issue.

After discussion was held on this subject, Daquilante gave an update on the project. She said this Thursday and Friday after students leave the school, gravel will be removed from both of the elementary schools roofs. She said the gravel at Sistersville elementary will be transferred to the Sistersville Water Department, and Boreman’s would go to the Fair Board.

At a previous meeting, instructional materials were recommended by the kindergarten through grade 12 Social Studies Committee for adoption at the beginning of July 1, 2019 and to be used through June 30, 2023. The materials are as follows: McGraw-Hill Impact Social Studies was chosen for kindergarten through fifth grade, McGraw-Hill: US History was chosen for sixth grade, McGraw-Hill:

Discovering Our Past was picked for seventh grade, for eighth grade Clairmont Press: West Virginia was chosen; also picked for the high school was McGraw-Hill for World History, Geography, and Economics, Cengage- US History for both US Studies and Contemporary Studies, and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for Civics, Psychology, and Sociology.

This was put on a two week comment with the board at the previous meeting. As the two weeks had ended, all materials were approved by the board with a motion made by Roberts, which was seconded by Wells. The motion was carried.

While reviewing financials, Davis spoke of budget revision requests. There were eleven budget revisions, mostly from grants received. Davis mentioned $82,560 came from miscellaneous local grants. It was also said by Davis they have been receiving royalty income from Antero Resources on the minerals they own at Boreman, covering eight acres. In one month, they reportedly received $6,000. As such, Davis recommended the board use this first amount to replace the gym floors at both elementary schools. The board had no objections to this.

All revisions were approved with a motion made by Wells. Roberts seconded the motion, and it was quickly carried.

A contract renewal with the Wetzel/Tyler Health Department for the 2019-2020 year was also needed. Daquilante explained that each year a contract is signed to pay the health department $10,000 for various services such as the Department of Transportation’s physical exams for drivers, disposal of biohazard waste, providing flu shots for staff members, and obtaining the permit for the kitchen. Daquilante said this is simply a renewal, and the amount has not changed. Thomas made a motion to approve of this contract renewal, Roberts seconded it, and the motion was carried.

The board also began discussion on the Public Library funding. Davis said the amount remains the same as was presented in the preliminary budget, which is $30,000 for the Middlebourne Public Library, and $30,000 for the Sistersville Public Library. It was noted this is $7,000 more than was requested. The funding was given approval with a motion made by Wells. This was seconded by Thomas, and the motion was carried.

Approval was also needed for the County Extension Office funding. This amount also remained the same as presented in the preliminary budget, which was $29,076. This was said to be a slight increase from 2019. Approval for this was given after Wells made a motion and Byers seconded it. The motion was carried.

Roberts inquired about the funding the board gives to the 4-H grounds. He said the board covers part of the programs, and asked why they “cut back.” However, it was explained the board does not fund the programs, but the program assistant – the secretary, which has nothing to do with the camp itself.

The County five percent pay table increase for the 2019-2020 year was then reviewed. This also remained the same as previously presented to the board, and he reiterated it was for all employees – both professional and service. Wells made a motion to approve, and Thomas seconded it. The motion was carried.

Davis also asked the board to declare the school Ipad’s as surplus property in order for them to be sold. It was explained the Ipad’s will first be offered for purchase to staff members, before being sold to Apple. The newest Ipads will be reatined. Byers made a motion to declare the Ipad’s as surplus, and Wells seconded it. The motion was carried.

The final budget for the 2019-2020 year also needed approval. Wells made a motion to approve of the final budget, Thomas seconded it, and the motion was carried.

In other business, the 2019-2020 athletic schedule for Tyler Consolidated Middle/High School Cross Country was submitted to the board for approval. The motion to accept and approve this schedule was made by Wells. Roberts seconded this motion, and it was quickly carried.

Also submitted to the board for approval were the following trip requests: Ashley Cochran to take 13 students from the TCHS TSA and four chaperones to the National TSA Conference in Washington D.C. from June 28 to July 2, and Ashley Moore for the Middle School TSA students to attend the 2019 TSA Spring Conference in Washington, D.C from June 28 to July 2 with her husband Matt as a chaperone. Cochran also requested funding for transportation by charter bus at an expense of $5050.00, which would be shared with the TCMS TSA.

These trips were approved with a motion made by Wells. This motion was seconded by Roberts, and it was carried.

The following requests also needed approval by the board: Brian and April Rush for their daughter to cross county lines to continue attending TCMS for the 2019-20 school year, Timothy and Tiffany Michael for their son to be released from Tyler County Schools to attend Paden City Elementary School for the 2019-20 school year, John Headley and Cheryl Shreves for their three children to cross county lines to continue attending Tyler County Schools for the 2019-20 school year, pending release from Wetzel County Schools, Matthew and Carla Hudson for their son to also cross county lines to continue attending TCHS for the 2019-20 school year, pending release from Wetzel County Schools, Erica Folmar for her two children to also be permitted to cross county lines to continue attending Tyler County Schools for the 2019-20 school year, pending release from Wetzel County Schools, Cathy and Chuck Boggs for their son to also do the same as previosuly mentioned, Mollie Baker for her daughter to be released from Tyler County Schools to attend Paden City Elementary School for the 2019-20 school year, and Eric Mason – on behalf of the Tycon Youth League – to use the TCHS football field, locker rooms, and concession stand for games and practices from July 23 to October 31. Vanessa Matthews agreed to over-see the event, and the organization will reportedly be completely responsible for clean-up.

All reuests were approved with a motion made by Wells, and seconded by Thomas. The motion was carried.

In other business, the resignation of Merritt Grimes was reviewed by the board. Grimes was resigning from his positions as the Student Council Advisor and the School Day Plus Substitute at SES, effective at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.

The resignation was approved by the board after a motion was made by Wells, and seconded by Thomas. The motion was carried.

The following employments, transfers, and recissions were also in need of the board’s approval: rescind the mutual transfer of Amanda Heasley from Special Education Teacher at SES to Title 1 Teacher at AIB Elementary School and restore Ms. Heasley to her former position as a Special Education Teacher at SES; employ Kayla Shields as Bus Operator of Bus and Route #20 for the 2019-20 school year, Matt Peters as Evening Events Coordinator at TCMS/HS, effective August 1, and Jan McCasky as Third Grade Teacher at SES for the 2019-20 school year.

It was also said that an individual applied for the positions of Head Girls Soccer Coach and Assistant Girls Soccer Coach at TCHS. However, this individual’s certification reportedly will expire soon, and it was said that they were working with this person to get this figured out.

It was also reported that the interest meeting held on soccer produced results. It was said that 15 boys were interested in soccer, but 11 of them will be seniors which raises concerns on interest for boys soccer. However, it was said that over 40 girls made an appearance.

All of these requests were approved by the board with a motion made by Wells. Thomas seconded this motion, and the motion was carried.

Also in need of board approval was the employment of the new Tyler County Schools Superintendent. Shane Highley was nominated for this position, with the contract to be determined by the Board of Education. Wells made a motion to approve this employment, and Thomas seconded it. This was a three to two vote, with Byers and Roberts opposed. However, the motion was carried.

Following this, Wells made a motion to authorize payment of the bills, and Thomas seconded it. The motion was carried.

Roberts then made a motion to enter into an executive session, and Byers seconded it.

The next regular Tyler County Board of Education meeting will be held on June 3 at 7 p.m. at the board office.