The recently-closed Beckham Bates Elementary School at Colson has been sold to the Leslie-Knott- Letcher-Perry Community Action Agency (LKLP) for $35,000.
“That will leave that building open for community use,” Letcher Schools Supt. Anna Craft said earlier this week at the July meeting of the Letcher County Board of Education.
Craft said the Head Start program will be kept open at the site, which the board abandoned after merging the school with Letcher Elementary.
In other business, the board learned that construction of new athletic fields at Letcher County Central High School could begin as soon as mid August.
Chris Russell, project manager for Codell Construction, said bids were opened July 19 for the softball field, tennis courts and golf range. Total construction cost is $2,081,018.
“We were disappointed the bids came in high,” said Terry Sturgill, director of special projects. “If this is what it takes to build this, this is what we do.”
Board Chairman Will Smith said, “We’ve got to get a move on this thing.”
A pre-construction meeting is set for Aug. 14, and Russell said construction could begin after that.
Craft also told the board that Tony Sergent, former principal of Fleming-Neon Elementary School, has been named director of the Continuous Instructional Improvement Technology System (CIITS) program. Craft also said that former Jenkins Elementary Principal Gracie Maggard has been named as principal of Fleming-Neon Middle School.
The board also:
• named April Morrell, a speech pathologist, as the dictrict’s employee of the month.
• approved adding ten minutes of non-instructional time to each school day in order to serve all students free breakfast.
• approved paying Sherman Carter Barnhart Architects $56,553.62 for work on the Letcher County Central softball field.
• voted to establish a teacher position at West Whitesburg Elementary School for the coming school year. The position will be funded from school improvement, extended school services and gifted and talented funds.
• learned of the resignations of substitute teachers Sarah Adkins, Nicholas Fields, Tessa Fugate, Christa Gay, Kristi Hatton, Ashlee Isaac and Amanda Johnson. Traci Sexton, a teacher at Cowan Elementary School, also resigned.
• learned of the retirements of certified employees Patsy Amburgey, a teacher at CES; Cecilia Lynn Bates, Family Resource Youth Service Center (FRYSC) director at West Whitesburg and Cowan elementary schools; Melody Bird, a teacher at WWES; Sandra Caudill, a teacher at CES; Miriam Hostetler, a teacher district wide; Elizabeth Williams, special education teacher at Fleming-Neon Elementary School; and Jeanette Yonts, a teacher at Martha Jane Potter Elementary School.
• learned of the suspension of substitute teacher Machelle Bates.
• learned of the employment of Emmanuel Anama, teacher district-wide; Albany Buttrey, teacher at Letcher County Central High School; William Jordan, teacher at Whitesburg Middle School; Deana Napier, teacher at Letcher Elementary School; Tere Sergent, teacher at Cowan Elementary School; Caitlin Slone, teacher at CES; and Amanda Sturgill, teacher at CES.
• learned of the resignations of classified employes Chrystal Boggs, a middle school academic coach, and Suzanna Taylor, a program assistant II worker at CES.
• learned of the employment of classified employees Allan Brimmer, a bus driver at LLCS; Mary Lisa Gibson, a cook/baker at LES; Donald Mullins, a custodian and lunch monitor at WMS; and Brenda Sturgill, a cook/baker at Arlie Boggs Elementary School.
• learned of the transfer of classified employee Brittney Adams, a former program assistant II worker, to the position Family Resources and Youth Services Center coordinator at West Whitesburg and Cowan.
• approved contracts for speech pathologists Pamela Baker, Kristi Dixon, April Morrell and Melissa Fleming. Vanessa Rouse has been hired to provide speech-language screenings, evaluations, therapy and paperwork on an as needed basis.
The next school board meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. on Aug. 27 in the Lendell Smith Memorial Conference Room of the Letcher County School Bus Garage.