School Board discusses campus improvements at all parish schools

If the discussions about possible renovation plans that took place at the special called meeting of the Jackson Parish School Board held this past Monday, soon the campuses of Jackson Parish schools will be swarming with contractors, painters, roofers and HVAC technicians.

The meeting was called prior to the scheduled committee meetings and normal monthly session that saw board members Gerry Mims, Rickey McBride, Wade McBride, Gloria Davis, Dennis Clary, Mary Saulters and Calvin Waggoner along with Superintendent David Claxton and Financial Manager Kristi Bass go over renovation suggestions provided by the Principals at each school. 

The opportunity to do the requested work at Jonesboro-Hodge Elementary, Jonesboro-Hodge Middle, Jonesboro-Hodge, Quitman and Weston High Schools has been afforded due to the receipt of ESSER funding that has been provided through the federally funded CARES Act.

By definition CARES Act ESSER Funding aims to help K-12 schools “rethink the way students access education.” Federal funding through the Coronavirus Relief Fund intends to make learning more accessible to students with disabilities, at-risk populations, language needs, and other challenges.

Bowie and Carter honored! During the regular scheduled meeting, LHSAA state track and field high jump champions Detre’Vien Bowie of Jonesboro-Hodge and Emma Carter of Quitman High received recognition. Superintendent Claxton presented both with a certificate of honor for winning individual state championships in their respective classes.

Mims makes plea for parish wide band! When asked for comments board member Gerry Mims offered a thought provoking idea that drew affirmative nods from some present when he asked what the possibilities were of having a band assembled among parish wide students. 

“To many talented performers from our parish are losing out on the chance to earn scholarships and instruction for what could be a possible future career,” said Mims. “I would like to see them get an opportunity to pursue this so we need to look at having a parish wide band at least.”

After a hearty discussion most agreed that this was something that needed to be looked into. General consensus was that if this did come to fruition that it would probably be best to start at the junior high level and grow into a high school band and that it would be vital to find the right person to lead such an endeavor.

Committee recommendations approved: Prior to adjournment the recommendations of the Executive/Finance, Transportation and Building & Grounds Committees were approved as follows:

Executive/Finance:

1. Payment of General Fund bills – $1,914,016.78
2. Payment of General Fund bills – $1,914,016.78
3. Payment of Food Service bills – $115,300.16
4. Payment of Sales Tax bills – $184,452.54
5. Payment of Special Ed Fund bills – $53,654.53
6. Payment of District Mainenance bills – $18,603.35
7. Approval to pay Professional Development by LA University Health Science Center $6,000.00 for Special Education teachers to be paid from Redesign IDEA 611 funds.
8. Approval to pay Open Up Resources $12,480.00 for Illustrative Math Student Workbooks to be paid out from Title One School funds and broken down as:
$3,900.00 – JH Middle School
$4,420.00 – Quitman High School
$4,160.00 – Weston High School 
9. Approval to pay Zearn Mathematics $7,5000.00 for (K-5) Digital Access for students and teachers at JH Elementary, Quitman and Weston High Schools to be broken down as $2,500.00 for each school and paid from Title One School funds.
10. Approval to pay $2,000.00 to five (5) Louisiana Tech year-long students for a total of $10,000.00 to be paid from Title II funds.
11. Approval to pay APEL $26,500.00 for Comprehensive Needs Assessment to be paid from Title One School funds and broken down as follows:
$4,500.00 – JH Elementary School
$4,500.00 – JHHS
$4,000.00 – JH Middle School
$7,000.00  – Quitman High School
$6,500.00 – Weston High School 
12. Approval to pay $12,484.00 for STEM Camp to be held on July 12-15, 2021 at JH Middle School and JHHS to be paid from ESSER III funds, pending LDOE approval. Camp is for all parish schools. 

Transportation:

1. Approval for out of state travel for the Quitman High School Softball Team to attend a summer camp at Mississippi State University on July 12-14, 2021. All expenses to be paid from Quitman Softball funds.
2. Approval for put of state travel for Weston High School students to Pennekamp State Park, FL on March 20-24, 2022. Expenses to be paid by students.
3. Approval to pay Ross Bus & Sales $110,591.06 for a 65 passenger, gasoline powered, Blue Bird Vision Bus to be specially modified for Special Ed use and paid by ESSERS II funds. 

Building & Grounds:

1. Accepted low quote of $132,465.00 from the Mabry Co. LLC of Ruston for the Quitman parking lot to be paid from Quitman District funds.
2. Accept bid from Southern Roofing LLC of $52,732.36 for materials and installation of metal roof on Quitman High School Cafeteria.
2. Accept bid from Southern Roofing LLC of $17,500.00 for materials and installation of metal roof on Weston High School Cafeteria.


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