BUCKHANNON – Upshur County Board of Education members voted unanimously to approve Saturday, Jan. 19 as the renewal date for the school levy during their Tuesday meeting at Washington District Elementary School.
Upshur County Superintendent Dr. Sara Lewis Stankus told board members they needed to decide when they would have the school levy election. She said once they decide, they can let Upshur County Clerk Carol Smith know the date.
“We are at a deadline tonight. If we want the levy election to be in January, we need to let her (Smith) know,” Stankus said. “As we develop this call, there is a lot we have to do after we set the date. I would encourage the board to set a date tonight, if you will. Then we will work on the details to develop the call.”
Board members discussed three possible dates – Jan. 19, Feb. 2 and Feb. 9 – but ultimately voted for Jan. 19 because they thought it would be easier to recruit poll workers for a Jan. 19 election, as the following Monday is a holiday – Martin Luther King Day.
“Mrs. Smith had told us that it was difficult to get poll workers,” Dr. Stankus said. “She told us it might be easier to get poll workers on a Saturday if they have that Monday off.”
Board member Katie Loudin said that she felt the board should take Smith’s advice.
“If she thinks that MLK weekend is a good weekend, we should go with that,” Loudin said. “I also think it’s a time when families are not traveling because you don’t know what the roads are going to be like at this time of year.”
“Hopefully, the weather doesn’t work against us in getting people to the polls,” Loudin added. “We will just keep our fingers crossed.”
The current excess levy was approved by voters in February 2014 and expires next year. It helps fund textbooks, technology, maintenance, extra-curricular activities and more.
During the unfinished business portion of the meeting, Tim Derico, facilities and curriculum director for Upshur County Schools gave a report on issues facing some of the buildings.
“The concern I have is we had the issue with the glycol leak right before school started (at Buckhannon-Upshur High School) and now this one (also at the high school),” Derico said. “Glycol is being reclaimed so we are not absorbing that expense. The fittings that were there for the exterior piece were deteriorated – they were in bad shape.
“So rather than face this problem in another two months, we replaced all those fittings for that piece in the auditorium area, so it should all be taken care of,” he added.
Glycol is a colorless liquid used primarily as an automobile anti-freeze formula or as a solvent.
Derico also said there was a slight HVAC issue at B-UHS over the weekend.
“Friday night, the broiler was not functioning, and Mr. Liggett got it going,” Derico said. “He got it manually working but not with the computer. SIMCO came and got it functioning with the computer on Monday, so we are back to normal at the high school.”
The middle school gym floor was the next topic of discussion. Derico said there is a large bulge on the floor.
“It is my understanding this has occurred in the past,” Derico said. “Generally, when the temperatures decrease, the humidity decreases and it goes back down.”
Also, during Tuesday’s BOE meeting, board members voted to accept the following
-Tonya Norman, sign language interpreter, effective Oct. 10.
-Rodney Rovello, mechanic, effective Oct. 12.
-Jessica Grose, cook at B-UMS, effective Oct. 31.
-Christy Bush, extracurricular transportation aide on bus 90, p.m. run, effective Oct. 31.
Employment, pending appropriate certifications and background checks:
-Kevin Harris, substitute teacher, effective Oct. 24.
-Marcus Miller, substitute bus operator, effective Oct. 24.
-Scott Preston, substitute bus operator, effective Oct. 24.
-Katie Yeager, wellness pack coordinator, B-UHS, effective Oct. 24.
-Jessica Grose, extracurricular transportation aide on bus 82, a.m. run, effective Oct. 24.
-Tammy Kelley, extracurricular cook at BUMS, effective Oct. 24.
-Christine Flanagan, Title I tutor, Buckhannon Academy Elementary, effective Oct. 24.
-Tahsha Carpenter, Title I tutor, Buckhannon Academy Elementary, effective Oct. 24.
-Susanne Britton, Title I tutor, Buckhannon Academy Elementary, effective Oct. 24.
-Amanda Mason, Tile I tutor, Buckhannon Academy Elementary, effective Oct. 24.
-Dan Hepler, Title I tutor, Buckhannon Academy Elementary, effective Oct. 24.
The next Upshur County BOE meeting is slated for 6 p.m. Nov. 13 at Buckhannon-Upshur High School. Schools making their LSIC and Faculty Senate presentations that night include Buckhannon-Upshur middle and high schools.