Posted Date: 02/14/2023
After a 53-minute executive session during Monday night's Poteau Public Schools Board of Education meeting at the Bert Corr Administrative Building, the board took care of several personnel matters.
The board approved the resignations of PHS science teacher Kody Tackett and dance coach Tiffany Sconyers and the employment of hourly adult education teacher Barbara Billy, Poteau Primary Elementary School paraprofessional Brianne Balley, maintenance man Edward Francis as well as Sandy Hamman as 2023 summer school principal for kindergarten through fourth grade and Sarah Reed as the assistant summer school principal.
Most of the re-employments were approved — Poteau Public Schools Chief Financial Officer Shannon Barnes, Director of Special Education Brenda Dalton, Assistant Superintendent Diane Tillery, Poteau Primary Elementary School Principal Kristie Smith and Assistant Principal Shannon Warren, Poteau Upper Elementary School Principal Kelly Holton and Hamman as assistant principal, Pansy Kidd Middle School Principal Bobbi Gillham and Reed as assistant principal, Seventh-Eighth Grade Academic Center Principal Jennifer Lamb, PHS Assistant Principal Eric Hackler, Director of Technology Dianna Warren, Director of Child Nutrition Cindy Anson, Director of Operations Devin Cochran, Athletic Director Greg Warner and Adult Education Director Myrna Davis.
However, two of those listed on the re-employment list, PHS Principal Joe Ballard and Seventh-Eighth Grade Academic Center Assistant Principal Todd Hackler, had their board decisions tabled until a later meeting.
Another item potentially talked about in the executive session, then approved by the board, was a $500 extra-duty stipend to the Poteau rodeo team sponsor Kelly Watson.
However, two more potential topics discussed in the executive session, to approve changes to the activity director stipend and purchasing real estate, also were tabled.
Ballard gave the board his annual student college remediation report and dropout report.
With regard to his dropout report, instead of covering a period of four years, it's now covering a six-year time period. He said there are 12 students on the dropout list, four of them are being looked at to be taken off the report. Ballard credits the success of keeping the kids interested in school to the Pirate Connect with Ashley Oliver and Chase Caldwell as well as PHS faculty and staff.
With regard to his student college remediation report, which Ballard said is about a year or two behind in how up to date the information is, he said 44 students went right from high school to college (with those being in-state institutions) or 31.2 percent of the students, with 45 students going to Oklahoma colleges by the spring semester after graduating high school. He said 71 students out of 141 went to college in the state, while the rest went into the work force. Ballard also told the board 35 percent of students needed developmental aid.
In his report, Poteau Public Schools Interim Superintendent Dr. John Turner told the board the state accreditation officer will be on campus Tuesday "to finish up our accreditation report."
"Everybody's been working hard to have that ready," Turner said.
The board approved the Poteau Pirates varsity and junior varsity baseball team to go play road games against Fort Smith (Ark.) Northside on April 13 as well as the high school track teams attending a meet in Van Buren, Ark., on March 3 and April 14 and the junior high track teams going to Van Buren for a meet on March 9.
The board also approved the board appointed positions of Watson as minutes clerk, Cheryl Duncan as encumbrance clerk, Barnes as treasurer, Rise McCoy as custodian of the activity fund, Tillery and Barnes as co-custodians of the activity fund, Sheila Nichols as federal claims clerk and Sherry Stacy as payroll clerk.
The board approved a board member as a board clerk to be added to the signatory list for the district's accounts at both The Community State Bank and First National Bank of Fort Smith (formerly known as Central National Bank) and removing former board member Matt McBee and former CFO Vallerie Martin from the bank accounts at both The Community State Bank and First National Bank of Fort Smith.
The board also approved an activity fund account for the Poteau Rodeo Club, reinstating an activity fund account for the PHS Mat Squad, formerly known as the Mat Maids, and all fundraisers for this school year to date.
The board approved surplusing treadmills and metal lockers, but board member Earl Jobe's motion included to not surplus the pole vault stand as Jobe was a past PHS track coach who believed that the pole vault stands should remain in case future use dictates having it around.
In her first report as CFO, Barnes told the board the ending balances for the general fund in January was $3,248,952, the building fund at $757,844, the child nutrition fund at $814,628, the bond fund at $536,085, the sinking fund at $456,384 and the insurance recovery fund at $58,642.
New board member Troy George was sworn in by Jobe to begin the meeting. George is taking the seat formerly held by McBee, who had to vacate it due to moving out of that district.