Watson Chapel School Board puts off discussion of superintendent contract

The Watson Chapel School District Board of Directors voted to table discussion of an extension of superintendent Danny Hazelwood’s employment contract until a later date during its regular monthly meeting Monday night.

Board member Rodney Reynolds made the motion to table discussion.

“According to policy this is the time of year to consider extending the superintendent’s contract,” Hazelwood said before the board adjourned to executive session.

In other personnel matters the board approved a recommendation from Hazelwood to hire Winter Overton as a substitute cafeteria worker.

In other business the board accepted the December financial report as read by Hazelwood.

“We received $1,928,165.55 in December and spent $1,961,793.68 in the non-activity funds, leaving an ending balance of $7,857,036.73,” Hazelwood said.

The board conducted a 30-minute closed personnel hearing for district teacher Lynell Bowen, who asked for a hearing because she was not chosen as the gifted and talented pullout teacher serving Edgewood Elementary and L.L. Owen Elementary schools.

“Ms. Bowen and Mr. Roberts, the board has heard you and has taken what you have said under advisement,” board president Sandra C. Boone said after the board returned from its deliberations. “You will be sent a written response to your complaint within five days. Please know that this board and the superintendent have open doors and we are always here to listen to your concerns. It is your right to file a grievance and we respect that right.”

Hazelwood informed the board that he was selected to serve as part of the Arkansas Association of Educational Administrators Legislative Committee.

“The AAEA has asked superintendents from each of the co-ops around the state to serve on one of three committees to review proposed bills in the General Assembly that affect education,” Hazelwood said. “I have been asked to be a part of the governance committee representing the Arkansas River Co-op, which will look at things like the length of the school day. White Hall superintendent Larry Smith is on the curriculum committee and Stuttgart superintendent Melvin Bryant is on the finance committee.”

Hazelwood said issues including school choice, National School Lunch Act fund balances, teacher contributions to health insurance and school vouchers will likely be addressed over the course of the current legislative session.