The following is a synopsis of the Bulloch County Board of Education meeting held March 25, 2010:
Interiors for New Schools - Superintendent Holloway welcomed Rebecca Hooker and Heather Williams, who are planning the interior spaces of the new Julia P. Bryant and Sallie Zetterower Elementary Schools, which like construction, is funded through SPLOST Funds. With input from principals and teachers, it is their goal to make the interiors of these schools interactive learning experiences that use the building itself to reinforce lessons from curriculum. By seeing the children as consumers and education as the product they are looking to acquire, the team took inspiration from the U.S. Museum of Natural History and various children's museums to create layouts with a museum-like feel in each school.
It is proposed for Julia P. Bryant to have the theme of "Bear Nation Exploration," and feature wall displays and exhibits within the school's hallways, media center and cafeteria that teach topics such as the great explorers, the ocean and aviation. For Sallie Zetterower Elementary the proposed theme would be "Discovering the World Around You," with exhibits centered on people and culture, climates and weather, planet earth and earth's past. Hooker and Williams noted that this concept was cutting edge and that no other system in the country had thought of making its entire building a learning center.
Financial Update - Assistant Superintendent of Business and Finance Charles Wilson updated the Board on the school system's General Fund Budget. Previously the Board and administrators had developed a budget for Fiscal Year 2011 that was balanced despite more than $5 million in state budget cuts; however, the state announced last week that it was cutting the District's funding an additional $2.2 million by redirecting American Reinvestment and Recovery Act funds back to the state to offset its budget deficit. This now creates a FY '11 budget with $3.5 million in expenditures over revenues despite the more than $5.3 million the District has already cut through job attrition and reducing expenses. Since this time last year, the school system has put a plan in motion to reduce 73 positions over the next three years.
Georgia School Boards Association - The GSBA will meet April 26 in the Statesboro High School Cafeteria. School boards from more than 11 surrounding districts will be in attendance.
District 5 Board Member
The Board is still seeking citizens interested in representing District 5. Dr. Charles Bonds will serve until a replacement is found. To qualify for the seat an individual must be at least 21 years old, registered to vote in Bulloch County, reside in the district and must be a resident of the county for 12 months prior to election or appointment. Anyone interested needs to submit a letter of interest to the Board of Education Central Office by Tuesday, April 6, 2010, by 4:30 p.m.
GSBA Legislative Positions
The Board was asked to continue to review the GSBA's written position statements on key issues affecting education in Georgia. Board members will submit their suggestions to the Board's GSBA delegates, Mike Herndon and Maurice Hill.
The Board gave its consent for Southeast Bulloch High School Band to hold a Coke® sale fundraiser.
The Board approved the continuation of our 911 Radio Maintenance and Support Agreement with the Bulloch County Board of Commissioners. The fee is $42,408, and it is budgeted each year to provide on-site support for the Bulloch County 911 radio system.
The Board approved for Chairman David Ball and Superintendent Lewis Holloway to draft a letter in response to the Portal Middle High School Council concerning building issues.
The Board approved changing the April 8 meeting to April 15. The April 22 meeting will tentatively remain on the calendar.
Items Placed on the Table
The following items were placed on the table pending discussion by the Board: (1) A request by the Statesboro High School JROTC program to attend summer camp at Paris Island; (2) A request by Southeast Bulloch High School for students to attend the HOSA National Leadership Conference in Orlando; (3) A request for bids for furniture at the new Julia P. Bryant, Sallie Zetterower and Portal Middle High School; (4) A discussion about partnering with the City and County to place a new tennis center at SHS, Memorial Park, or Mill Creek; (5) A proposal to change the dirt work specifications at the SHS campus to allow for a simple, slope grade in order to use the area in question as a P.E. field rather than an area with underground retention installed for additional athletic venues; and (6) A request by the Maintenance and Transportation Department to purchase acoustical wall treatments for the Southeast Bulloch Middle, Langston Middle and William James Middle School gyms.