PB school board approves cameras in Robey, PBHS classrooms


The Pine Bluff School Board approved the purchase and installation of security cameras for all classrooms at Jack Robey Junior High School and Pine Bluff High School.

During their regular monthly board meeting Tuesday night, information provided by Superintendent Linda Watson said that Arkansas State Security will supply and install the equipment for Jack Robey for approximately $126,988.

“Arkansas State Security is a part of the state’s Texas-Arkansas Purchasing System, which is a consortium of vendors who meet requirements for school purchases,” Watson said. “Therefore we are not required to get three bids.”

Watson said that a bid process will need to be initiated for the camera system at PBHS.

Prior to the board vote, Watson provided a summary of results from a survey sent to parents, teachers and students at the two schools soliciting opinions on whether they thought the cameras were a good idea or not.

“Of the 61 PBHS teachers who responded, 63 percent of them said that the cameras would help to identify misbehavior by students,” Watson said. “About 40 out of the 61 said that cameras were a good idea.”

Watson said that 90 percent of the Jack Robey parents who responded said that the presence of cameras would help with student discipline.

“We are doing this to ensure the safety of our students and staff,” board vice president Ken Dickson said. “This is not about spying on anyone. It is to provide video evidence of any incidents that may occur.”

Band uniforms

In other business the board approved the lowest bid of $39,964 from Fruhauf Uniforms Inc. to provide 100 new uniforms for the Pine Bluff High School Band.

“We have been told that the current uniforms are old, torn and in need of replacement,” Watson said.

Agenda adjustment

The board approved a motion to move the executive session period normally held at the beginning of school board meetings to the end of each board meeting.

“We are doing this to try to make it more convenient for people who want to attend the meetings,” said board President Piccola Washington.

Personnel

The board approved a series of personnel actions including the hiring of certified personnel Beatrice Bell as a kindergarten teacher at Oak Park Elementary effective Aug. 21; Amber Brown as a teacher at Belair Middle School effective Sept. 23; Samuel Chaney as a math teacher at PBHS effective Aug. 9; Mellglory Jackson as a special education teacher at PBHS effective Aug. 28; Patricia Jones as a remediation enrichment teacher at Southeast and Belair middle schools effective Aug. 19; Patrick Laxson as a social studies teacher at Jack Robey effective Aug. 21; Helen McLemore as a teacher at Oak Park Elementary effective Sept. 23; Kenetta Ridgell as communications director in the district administration office effective Sept. 10; and Evelyn Shorter as a business teacher at PBHS effective Aug. 22.

The board approved the hiring of classified personnel Veronica Avery as a secretary at Belair Middle School effective Sept. 23; Ariel Brown as a tutor at Belair Middle School effective Sept. 23; Danyelle Brooks-Whitiker as an instructional aide at Greenville Pre-School effective Aug. 19; Lameika Buckner as a pre-K teacher at Greenville effective Aug. 19; Jean Celestine as a tutor at Oak Park effective Sept. 23; Betty Craig as a pre-K teacher at Greenville effective Aug. 19; Steven Crawford as a substitute teacher effective Sept. 23; Sheena Earl as a tutor at Belair Middle School effective Sept. 23; Yvette Graydon as an instructional aide at Greenville effective Aug. 19; Janice Griswold Stennis as a secretary at PBHS effective Aug. 9; Bud Hamley as a tutor at Belair effective Sept. 23; Justin Ingram as a tutor at Oak Park effective Sept. 23; Tresha James as a substitute and tutor at Belair effective Sept. 23; Sharon Jefferson as a pre-K teacher at Greenville effective Aug. 19; Bertha Jenkins as a pre-K teacher at Greenville effective Aug. 19; Carmen Jones as a senior teaching assistant effective Sept. 23; Pamela Kennedy as a tutor at Belair effective Sept. 23; Monya Lagrone as a pre-K teacher at Greenville effective Aug 19; Chandra Lavender as a senior teaching assistant and tutor at Belair effective Sept. 23; Marcia May as a tutor at Oak Park effective Sept. 23; Brickett Owens as a secretary at Oak Park effective Sept. 23; Sharon Peyton as an instructional aide at Greenville effective Aug. 19; Tracy Pugh as a counselor and secretary at PBHS effective Aug. 27; Shanta Rice as a substitute tutor at Belair effective Sept. 23; Jessica Scott as an instructional aide at Greenville effective Aug. 19; Tonya Smith as an instructional aide at Greenville effective Aug. 19; Jacorian Spears as a tutor at Oak Park effective Sept. 23; Sebastian Stargell as a paraprofessional at Belair effective Aug. 30; Calvin Thomas as a tutor at Belair effective Sept. 23; Derrick Vance as a tutor at Oak Park effective Sept. 23; and Q’Marrie West as a substitute at Belair effective Sept. 23.

The board approved the resignations of certified personnel Benjamin Bell as a physical science teacher at Jack Robey effective Sept. 6; and LaTonya Brady as an elementary teacher at Southwood Elementary effective Sept. 10.

The board approved the resignation of classified personnel Claudia Valencia as a secretary at PBHS effective Aug. 21.

The board approved the retirement of classified personnel Lester Johnson as director of transportation effective Sept. 10; and Nolia Lockett as a food service assistant effective Sept. 5.