It was a smooth meeting with a short agenda at the Madison County school board meeting held on Tuesday, April 19.
With no public comment, the board moved on to items recommended for individual consideration. There were no staff trips up for approval, so Superintendent Doug Brown presented the out-of-county student trips to the board members. All trips were approved unanimously.
There were no student attendance zone/district transfer requests for the board to vote on. Ida Walker took to the podium to present the instructional materials for the district to the board. These materials were approved with a vote of 4-1, with Bart Alford voting against.
Brown asked for permission to advertise changes to the Student Progression plan for the public to view. This request was approved unanimously.
Next, Brown informed the board that the district office is in need of roof repairs and that there were three bids for the roof replacement. The board agreed to go with the lowest bid of $26,500 for a metal roof with a 40 year warranty in addition to $15,000 for contingency expenses. The board approved the authorization unanimously.
Brown also asked the board for permission to advertise for migrant summer school teachers and paraprofessionals to meet staffing needs for the summer program. The board approved this request, 5-0.
Willie Williams presented 37 screened school volunteers up for approval, along with several personnel changes and non-instructional position advertisements. The board approved all of Williams' items.
Brown asked for permission to advertise for additional instructors for summer school for grades K-2 for the Madison County Central School but only if the Department of Education approves the School Improvement Grant (SIG) amendment. The board approved this request.
Brown informed the board about the portables up for sale. Madison Academy has purchased eight portables but the other eight are still up for grabs. Chairperson VeEtta Hagan brought up concerns about citizens putting in bids for the portables. “The taxpayers for these portables should be given a chance [to bid],” said Hagan.
All of the portables up for sale will need to be gone by June 26.
There were several construction project updates for the Madison County High School renovation project. The flooring and gym will be completed over the summer and the portables were moved on Friday, April 22. Brown commented on the gym's sound system and informed the audience that the gym is making huge strides towards improvement. “Hopefully we won't have to use the college so much for events,” said Brown.
In superintendent items, Brown commented that 293 students have applied for Madison Academy, which will be renamed Madison Creative Arts Academy next school year. The capacity of the school is 292 students but this number could change by the beginning of the next school year. A lottery will be held for certain grade levels.
Brown spoke a few words about the abduction of Brian Williamson that occurred on Sunday, April 17. “Thank God that [Williamson] was found safe,” said Brown. Brown stated that this incident is a reminder to everyone how easy it is for children to go missing and reminded everyone to stay vigilant.
Hagan expressed concerns about a STEM event that happened on April 9. Hagan stated that no one sent a bus from Madison for students to attend the STEM event. “STEM should benefit our children and the school should see that,” said Hagan.
The next school board meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 3 at 6 p.m. at the district office, located at 210 NE Duval Ave.