Board members approved a search timeline during their October meeting at Cleveland Middle School. The next steps are to meet with local officials at 11:30 a.m. Thursday at the Cleveland/Bradley Chamber of Commerce followed at 6 p.m. by a public forum at Cleveland Middle School.
The meetings will be led by Tennessee School Board Association Executive Director Dr. Tammy Grissom and CaNesha Gordon, the association’s member services assistant. The Tennessee School Board Association was contracted to conduct the search for the new director.
The school board will review input from the meetings and adopt search criteria by Oct. 15 and begin actively searching until the end of January 2011 when the selection process begins. Interviews will begin in February, and will conclude with visits to the communities of the top finalists.
Other discussion items were:
n Denning included a letter from Tennessee Department of Education Commissioner Timothy Webb in the board members’ packets. The letter reminded parents of revised academic standards adopted in January 2008. The changes were made to better prepare students for entering college or the work force. The tests given in 2009-10 reflected the revised standards and a much higher bar for “proficient” and “advanced” levels of achievement.
Denning said achievement levels of individual students reflected on each student’s Individual Profile Report may be lower than in the past, but that does not necessarily mean the school or student did anything wrong, but the state changed the rules.
- Brian Templeton, of Upland Design Group, presented a construction update on the Cleveland High School science wing. He said all the roof trusses are in place with the exception of the ones above the lobby. The roof is expected to be finished by the end of the month. The building will be dry before winter weather and interior work begins.
Brickwork along the south and west sides of the courtyard is complete and brickwork on the west side of the west connector is under way. Grade work in the courtyard should begin the week of Oct. 11. Also, all geothermal lines are in place and being purged.
Templeton said the science wing is on schedule for completion in April.
- Board member Dawn Robinson withdrew a resolution urging the Tennessee General Assembly to pass legislation removing the prohibition on local school boards to convert to special school districts. She said in many communities, the current system perpetuates funding battles and finger-pointing between boards of education and city or county governments. There are school districts which don’t have the stable relationship enjoyed by the city of Cleveland and Cleveland City Schools. There is also the question of whether Bradley County would share its revenue.
“The answer is, they could or they couldn’t,” she said.
Robinson said not every district would convert, but there are some districts that do not enjoy a positive relationship with their funding bodies.
“Will that make our funding body mad? I don’t think so because we are not asking to become a special school district,” Robinson said.