Students out for summer but school board still busy
Posted: Monday, June 15, 2009 9:12 pm
By TERRI JENKINS-BRADY
Special to The Messnger
While school may be out for summer vacation, the Union City School Board and Director of Schools Gary Houston and staff still meet regularly to conduct business, taking their shared civic duty very seriously: “The mission statement of the Union City Schools is to prepare students to live, work and excel in a global society.”
Both an orientation meeting and a called session were conducted last month. The orientation meeting, open to the public, was to discuss the contract for janitorial services at the three Union City schools. Firms bidding on the contract included Facilico, GCA and SSC. It was brought to the board’s attention that there had been some dissatisfaction with the services provided by the then-current contract holder GCA. The board had voted at last month’s meeting to re-bid the contract, since GCA had engaged in bid conduct that, in the board’s attorney-based opinion, was outside the bounds of the bid process.
At its called session May 26, also open to the public, the Union City School Board awarded SSC the contract due to the complaints about the services provided by GCA.
For its regularly-scheduled June 8 meeting, all members except Ellarine Moses, who was out of town, were present. Agenda items included the instructional paper bid for the 2009-10 school year, food and non-food bids and bread and milk product bids. The instructional paper bid was awarded to low bidder Lanzer Inc. of Union City, with a low bid of $17,550 for 600 cases of duplicating paper.
Bids for milk were awarded to Goldenrod Dairy as the bottom-line low bidder ($97, 349.19), for ice cream to sole-bidder Turner ($10,279.74) and for bread to sole-bidder Interstate Brands Sales Corp. ($9,287.07).
The next item on the agenda was the renewal for Houston’s contract and determination of salary.
Chairman Glenda Caudle requested a motion to delay the vote on this matter, as Houston had not had sufficient time both to examine the new contract and to review the board-determined goals for his position as director. Dr. Wright Jernigan moved to delay the consideration and vote, which was seconded by Shea Riley III and unanimously approved.
The board later decided to meet in called session at 7 a.m. June 29 to vote on the contract renewal. The meeting will be in the Board of Education office at the Union City Municipal Buil-ding and is open to the public.
After a motion for approval of continuation of operation of the schools under the 2008-09 budget was presented by Karl Ullrich and seconded by Jernigan, the motion was unanimously approved.
Houston then gave his personnel report.
Luann Barkley, who has been an educational assistant at Union City Elementary School, has been hired as a teacher there.
Courtney Bondurant is also a new hire at UCES.
At Union City Middle School, Morgan Cruce, a former EA, has been hired with federal stimulus funds to serve as a math intervention teacher. Richard Gamblin and Clarissa Youngblood are also new hires at the school.
Houston said several teachers had been reassigned for the 2009-10 school year. These include Jeff Chandler, from Union City High School to UCMS as a math teacher; Laura Faulkner, from UCMS to UCHS as a math teacher; Marsha Houston, from UCHS to UCMS as a reading intervention teacher funded with federal stimulus dollars; Cindy Kuberski, from UCHS to UCES as a technology teacher; Preston Martin, from In-School Suspension teacher at UCHS to special education teacher at UCHS; Laura Oliver, from UCES to UCMS; Allison Palmer to a new AIMSweb “response to intervention” position at UCES, funded by federal stimulus dollars; and Nan Tilghman, from UCES as an EA to the Central Office as assistant in the Finance Department.
He also noted the resignations of Tracy Guess as an EA at UCES and of teachers Natalie Huebner at UCMS and Kelly Swafford at UCMS.
Amanda Bruff was granted a medical leave of absence.
Houston’s director’s report was next, with a special appreciation for the new UCHS principal Wes Kennedy, who recently helped plant purple crepe myrtles along High School Drive. Mrs. Kennedy also assisted, and they purchased the mulch placed around the base of each shrub. Local merchants, St. James’ Episcopal Church, the City Beautiful Commission, Union City Booster Club and the board of education contributed to the fund for the shrubs. Houston said painting of several inside areas of the high school was under way, with the middle school next on the slate.
Houston said he wanted to congratulate UCHS salutatorian Wyatt Dickerson Carr and valedictorian Chelsea Stuart Hale and all members of the UCHS Class of 2009.
“It has been a very good school year,” Houston said. “I would like to commend the faculty, the members of the school board, all the teachers, parents and students for their efforts this school year. The community support we receive is very much appreciated.”
There was neither other business nor comments from board members and a motion to adjourn was brought forth by Riley and seconded by Cathy Waggoner.
Terri Jenkins-Brady, a Kenton resident, co-owns Write Up the Road Publishing with her husband, Timothy.
Published in The Messenger 6.15.09