By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
The Escambia County Board of Education followed up a stormy workshop with a calm regular meeting, during which the board quietly approved total expenditures of more than half-a-million dollars, most of it for math and reading improvement programs for Special Education teachers and students with special needs.
The biggest purchase was of Read180 and Math180 intervention and academic acceleration programs from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, at a cost of $378,356.88 that will be paid out of Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) funds.
Board members also approved the purchase — from Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds — of Burns / Do The Math workbooks and other consumables from Heinemann at a cost of $59,270.45.
In other business conducted during the meeting, the BOE:
*Learned from Lotoya Cooper-West, the school system’s Director of Career and Technical Education, that the system has been awarded a $900,000 grant from the state education department’s Career Readiness program. (See separate story, this edition.)
*Approved renewal — at a cost of $57,172.82 — of its participation in the ATBE Automobile Fund, which insures the system’s vehicles.
*Subscribed to RTI (Response to Intervention) Rails for the 2023-24 school year. The $12,000 cost will be paid out of ESSER funds.
*Purchased ScholarChip Alternative Behavior Educator from Adams Learning Resources Inc. in the amount of $10,815. The purchase will be paid for with Title IV funds.
*Entered into an owner-architect agreement with Ward Scott Morris Architecture Inc. to provide drawings for the renovation of W.S. Neal High School’s storm-damaged auditorium.
*Heard from Chief Schools financial Officer Rochelle Richardson that the system’s unrestricted bank account had an unaudited balance of $18,675,351.42. That’s the rough equivalent of 4.9 months of operating expenses.
*Approved a Letter of Intent between the school board and Seven States Timberlands, Inc. regarding closure of the 100-acre purchase of land for the new Flomaton Elementary School and the county’s Career Readiness Center.
*Approved an out-of-state field trip for the Flomaton High School band to perform in the 2024 San Antonio Fiesta Flambeau parade in San Antonio, Texas, from April 24-28, 2024. Approval was given at an earlier meeting for W.S. Neal’s band to participate in the same parade.
*Announced that September’s regular meeting will be held at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 14, at the Central Office in Brewton. Two budget meetings will also be held that day, prior to the regular meeting. One will take place at 9 a.m. at the Atmore Center Office and one at 3 p.m., prior to the regular meeting.
The following personnel items were approved by the board at the superintendent’s recommendation.
The following abbreviations are used:
Escambia County Board of Education – ECBOE
A.C. Moore Pre-K School – ACMPS
Huxford Elementary School – HES
Rachel Patterson Elementary School – RPES
Escambia County Middle School – ECMS
Escambia County High School – ECHS
Flomaton Elementary School – FES
Flomaton High School – FHS
Pollard McCall Junior High School – PMJHS
W.S. Neal Elementary School – WSNES
W.S. Neal Middle School – WSNMS
W.S. Neal High School – WSNHS
Turtle Point Science Center – TPSC
Escambia County Alternative School – ECAS
Escambia Career Readiness Center – ECRC
Atmore Bus Shop – ABS
Brewton Bus Shop – BBS
1. Ronald Hall, bus driver, ABS, effective August 23, 2023
1. Darrell Spencer, culinary teacher – CTE, ECHS, effective August 23, 2023
2. Sandi McMurphy, teacher aide, ECMS, effective August 1, 2023
3. Benjamin Ard, elementary teacher, ECMS, effective July 24, 2023
4. Michael Sullivan, physical education teacher, HES, effective August 13, 2023
5. Diana Graczyk, 6-hour lunchroom worker, RPES, effective August 14, 2023
6. Samantha Gann, elementary teacher, WSNES, effective August 31, 2023
7. Cameron Simon, speech language pathologist, Office of Special Education & Student Services, effective August 8, 2023
1. Sarah Weaver, pre-k auxiliary teacher aide, ACMPS, effective August 2. 2023, replacing Maranda Lambeth
2. Cynthia Clack, pre-k auxiliary teacher aide, ACMPS, effective August 2, 2023
3. India LaPalme, pre-k teacher, ACMPS, effective August 2, 2023
4. Nathan Taylor, secondary teacher, ECHS, effective August 21, 2023 replacing Melvin Jones
5. Shannon Blanton, teacher aide, ECHS, effective August 25, 2023, replacing Joel Gonzalez
6. Lasha McCarthy, 7-hour lunchroom worker, ECMS, effective August 18, 2023, replacing Sherie Johnson
7. Stacey Combs, 6-hour lunchroom worker, ECMS, effective August 14, 2023, replacing Victoria Shipp
8. Seth Harwell, elementary teacher, ECMS, effective August 21, 2023, replacing Kathleen Camp
9. Khalil Nettles, secondary teacher, FHS, effective August 2, 2023, replacing Daniel Killiam
10. Samantha Pearson, custodian, PMJHS, effective August 10, 2023, replacing Rufus White
11. Kendra Valenzuela, 6-hour lunchroom worker, RPES, effective August 14, 2023, replacing Mary Hubert
12. Brenda Harrell, elementary teacher, RPES, effective August 25, 2023, replacing Melanie Griffith
13. Deanna Edwards, instructional teacher Aide, WSNES, effective September 11, 2023, replacing Kaylee Gann
14. Sally Denton, part-time academic interventionist, WSNES, effective September 11, 2023
15. Glyniss Booker, English / language arts teacher, WSNMS, effective August 25, 2023, replacing Jennifer Lee
16. Joseph Brown, general maintenance worker, Brewton Maintenance Department, effective September 5, 2023, replacing Ervin Carnley
17. Teresa Lambeth, special needs bus aide, Brewton Bus Shop, effective August 7, 2023, replacing Rheanna Thomas
18. William Shell, special needs bus aide, BBS, effective August 4, 2023
19. Darryl Phillips, bus driver, BBS, effective August 4, 2023, replacing Margie Baggett
20. Julie Carnley, bus driver, BBS, effective August 4, 2023, replacing Latisha Hall
21. Stacey Fuqua, bus driver, BBS, effective August 4, 2023, replacing Robert Spicer
22. Albert Grassia, technology technician, Technology Department, effective September 5, 2023, replacing Travis Kelley
1. Veronica Fore from payroll & insurance bookkeeper, ECBOE,
to payroll/benefits supervisor, ECBOE, effective August 25, 2023, replacing Teresa Armstrong
2. Rachel Wiggins, from math coach, WSNES, to elementary teacher, WSNES, effective September 5, 2023, replacing Samantha Gann
3. Dalton Shell, from special education aide, WSNES, to physical education teacher, HES, effective August 25, 2023, replacing Michael Sullivan
4. Kisha Hagan, from bus driver, BBS, to 6-hour lunchroom worker at FES and FHS, effective August 14, 2023, replacing Retha Hoomes
1. Wesley Sessions, physical education teacher, from FES, to FHS, effective August 2, 2023
1. Haley Boutwell, 6-hour lunchroom worker, FES / FHS, effective August 14, 2023, replacing Devony Bowden
2. Katrina Anthony, social studies teacher, WSNSH, amended date August 4, 2023
3. Latisha Hall, bus driver, BBS, effective August 14, 2023, replacing Kisha Hagan