• 75°

A short session… Only a handful of business on regular-scheduled September meeting of City School Board

BY IVAN SANDERS
STAR STAFF
ivan.sanders@elizabethton.com      
It was a relatively short meeting on Tuesday evening at the Mack Pierce Board Room for the Elizabethton City Schools Board of Education in their regularly-scheduled September meeting with business lasting a scant 20 minutes before adjournment came.
After approving the consent and regular agenda, the board moved to the time set aside for citizens to speak portion of the meeting.
Ms. Rhonda Paulson had submitted a request to address the board and was recognized during the meeting.
Paulson, the founder of the Isaiah 117 House which serves the children of Carter, Johnson, and Unicoi County, requested an opportunity to speak as an advocate for those children who are removed from their homes in the counties they serve.
She spoke of children who have come to the home who have gone through trying ordeals and all they wanted to do was to be able to go to school and the importance of school to those children who come through the doors of Isaiah 117 House.
Paulson passionately implored the board to reopen the doors of the school so the children of Isaiah 117 house could go back to school because they cannot be kept safe anymore.
Following Paulson, Mrs. Tabitha Wandell, the widow of Dr. Josh Wandell, addressed the board with some welcoming news for graduating seniors at Elizabethton High School seeking financial assistance for college.
“When Josh passed away, I wanted to do something to honor him but also to give back to the community that has given so much to us,” said Wandell. “So I have decided that I will give $20,000 to Elizabethton High School in the form of a scholarship to honor Josh and it will be in $1,000 increments for the next 20 years.
“To me as I think about this, I think about his legacy and for the next 20 years on Awards Day, he will be recognized and remembered and be honored. I am very excited about this opportunity and I wanted to share it with you all.”
Director of Schools Richard VanHuss also reminded those in attendance and listening via Livestream that if anyone would like to donate to the scholarship, they could do so in increments of $500 to keep the scholarship going beyond the 20-year time frame.
Other business included approving and ratifying the creation of an Instructional Technology Coordinator position for the 2020-2021 school year to be paid for by utilizing CARES Act funds.
VanHuss stated that on a recent survey that almost 60 percent of instructors identified this as a need for T.A. Dugger and the elementary schools as the high school already has someone working there.
Also, the Board of Education approved the Guaranteed Maximum Price Amendment between Elizabethton City Schools and GoinsRashCain, Inc. for re-roofing of the existing buildings at T.A. Dugger Jr. High School in an amount not to exceed $693,398.00.
This includes every building at the middle school except the small building at the entrance to the football stadium.
The board will be moving its regularly-scheduled October meeting from October 20th due to that date falling on the school system’s fall break. The rescheduled date will be announced later.