The Pine Bluff School Board agreed to increase the rate of pay for substitute teachers Tuesday night from $55 per day to $62.50.
Interim Superintendent Linda Watson said that the increase is needed because the other three Jefferson County school districts pay substitutes $60 per day and the $55 amount paid by the Pine Bluff School District made it hard to recruit an adequate number of substitute teachers.
Watson said that she will work with Mary Harvey, the director of human resources, to determine the correct rate of pay for certified employees who serve as substitute teachers.
In other business, the board approved a recommendation from Watson to adjust the policy for teachers hired after the first day of school.
Board secretary Freddie M. Johnson asked how teachers hired after the start of the school year will get the required amount of staff development time.
“We will have staff development throughout the school year as well as online courses that are in line with what we are doing,” Watson said.
Johnson expressed concern over the adequacy of the online content but was told by Watson that in-person training would be the first option and only when there is no other way to get the required training will the online courses be utilized.
The board approved a recommendation from Watson to clarify a segment of the teacher’s handbook, requiring teachers to report to school 15 minutes before class begins.
The board approved a recommendation from Watson to allow the administration to review bids for the purchase of network printers and to select the provider that meets the requirements of the district and stays within the price range of the five bids.
“The use of network printers will be much more cost efficient than using so many stand-alone printers that need to have printer cartridges replaced,” Watson said. “The five bids that were submitted range between $50,000 and $80,000 for the cost of the hardware.”
District director of business and finance Pam Winkler presented the July financial report to the board.
Winkler reported a preliminary beginning balance for the 2012-2013 school year of $14,515,235; a total available of $15,218,070; total deductions of $2,310,087; amount available for operating of $12,907,983; and a total balance of all funds of $17,143,320.
External provider and school improvement
The board approved Watson’s recommendation to hire external education provider Evans Newton-Target Teach and the hiring of two school improvement specialists, one elementary and one secondary.
The board approved personnel recommendations from Watson beginning with the hiring of certified personnel including Darrell Adams as an English teacher at Belair Middle School effective Aug. 16; Mekenzie Davidson as a math teacher at Belair Middle effective Aug. 20; Tiffany Erwin as an English teacher at Jack Robey Junior High School effective Aug. 15, replacing Jamie Stearns who resigned; Mandie Foltz as an Algebra II teacher at Pine Bluff High School effective Aug. 10, replacing Lexi Prahl who resigned;
Claudia Garrigus as a special education teacher at PBHS effective Aug. 14; Betty Gray as an English teacher at First Ward Learning Center effective Aug. 13, replacing Angela Smith who resigned; Taylor Pinckard as a fourth grade teacher at Broadmoor Elementary School effective Aug. 6, replacing Claudette White who transferred; Thomas Slatton as a physical science teacher at Jack Robey effective Aug. 6, replacing Tyler Moyer who resigned;
Pearly Stepps as a social studies teacher at PBHS effective Aug. 6, replacing Irma Strong who resigned; Crystal Swiney as a fourth grade teacher at Greenville Elementary School, effective Aug. 15, replacing Patti Taylor who transferred; Michael Turley as a math teacher at Jack Robey effective Aug. 20, replacing Marilyn James who resigned; Reginald Wilson as a math coach at Pine Bluff High School effective Aug. 20.
The board approved the renewal of the contract for Mary Harvey, director of human resources effective immediately.
The board approved the hiring of classified personnel including Isaac Barron as a security officer at PBHS effective Aug. 22; Cory Boman as a grounds crew helper in the auxiliary services department effective Aug. 15; Gregory Broady as a security officer at PBHS effective Aug. 22; Vickie Davis as a security officer at Jack Robey effective Aug. 22; Brandon Glymph as a bus driver in the transportation department effective Aug. 22; and Joseph Kelems as a warehouse man with the auxiliary services department effective Aug. 20.
The board approved the retirement of classified personnel Shirley Williams as a custodian with the auxiliary services department effective Aug. 13.
The board approved the resignations of certified personnel Wanda Andrews as a family and consumer science teacher at PBHS effective Aug. 8; and Steven Wallace as an English teacher at PBHS effective July 31.
The board approved the resignations of classified personnel including Deborah Johnson as a paraprofessional at PBHS effective Aug. 13; Lillian Marshall as a paraprofessional at Oak Park Elementary effective Aug. 3; Leslie Medlock as a secretary with Volunteers in Public Schools effective Aug. 15; Stacey Murphy as a paraeducator at Southwood Elementary effective Aug. 20; Shayla Nelson as a paraeducator at Southwood Elementary effective Aug. 6; and Leola Oliver as a paraprofessional at Jack Robey effective Aug. 3.