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Tyler BOE Mulls Plans Following Closure

By Staff | Apr 29, 2020

The Tyler County Board of Education met on Tuesday, April 21 for a regular meeting via teleconference. The meeting was called to order, followed by the approval of the minutes of the previous meeting.

Superintendent Highley then spoke about the Governor’s order to close schools for the remainder of the school year. “I will tell you that we do have a great plan moving forward…” Highley said. “If parents or students or teachers…are having any issues, make sure you reach out to someone…one of our social workers or teachers or counselors that way they can get the help they need in these times.”

Highley then reported May 13 is going to be packet pickup and iPad drop off for the schools. He then reported the plans for grading are to average the fourth sixth weeks and what they attended of the fifth sixth weeks together to get the fifth and sixth six weeks for the students. “The only thing the packets can do is improve the grade, it cannot lower the grade in any way, but it can make that fifth and sixth six weeks’ grades higher,” Highley reported. “I think that’s the fairest way to do it for kids.”

He also reported they are planning to continue meals at least through the end of May. He said, at this time, it is a possibility to extend these meal deliveries through the summertime with the Summer Feeding Program.

Highley then spoke about the current graduation plans. He reported they are planning to do a virtual graduation, where the students receive their diplomas one by one, and are filmed walking across the stage. F

ollowing them receiving their diplomas, he plans to have an outdoor site set up for the students and their families to get their picture taken together while the student is in their cap and gown.

He reported he had checked with the Health Department to make sure there are no issues. He said the plans for Awards Day are the same. He said there are plans to compile videos of people awarding scholarships, and release the video on the Awards Day.

He reported the principals are going to start scheduling teachers in to clean up their rooms and the report cards will be out at the same time they would normally be. “We’re not cutting this short in any way,” he said.

Dave Roberts asked if the senior class officers would be able to address their class.

Highley responded they will, the video will look the same as a graduation, however, it will be virtual rather than face to face.

PJ Wells sympathized with the 2020 Seniors. “These kids have spent 12 years waiting to cross this stage in front of their friends and family. It really breaks my heart,” Wells said.

The Board also commented about how well the staff, teachers, and students have helped students and parents through this time.

Highley then reported on the projects taking place throughout the county. He reported there are plans to clean out and replace the middle school lockers. Since there will not be a baseball season this year, Highley said he gave the construction company working on the stadium permission to tear down the baseball dugouts.

The Board then moved to pay the bills, followed by a motion to enter into an executive session. Following this, the meeting was adjourned.