Whitesburg KY

Jenkins superintendent reflects on first year

On the eve of completing his first year as Superintendent of Jenkins Independent Schools, Mike Genton presented a Capstone Presentation to the Jenkins Board of Education and two guests from his help and evaluation team at the board’s May meeting. Genton listed his goals, including financial soundness, communications, more and better opportunities for students, and building relationships with faculty and staff, and told the board he is happy to be at Jenkins and believes the future is very bright for the system.

The board approved a tentative budget for the coming 2017-2018 year of $5.8 million and learned that an unexpected payment to settle a discrepancy in taxes from EQT had added $90,000 to the $666,683 in the General Fund. District Finance Officer Candala Gibson told the board the windfall will be reflected in next month’s financial report. At Genton’s request, the board also voted to increase the hourly pay rate for substitute classified staff, custodians and cooks by $1 per hour, to $8.50. Genton said it is difficult to get substitutes for classified workers and he hopes the extra pay will help.

The board voted unanimously to accept the bid from the Peoples’ Insurance Agency to provide liability and workers compensation insurance for the coming school year. The cost for liability insurance, which includes terrorism insurance, is $94,814, and the compensation insurance rate is $19,198. Insurance representative Dale Carter told the board that terrorist insurance will pay for damages from an incident declared terrorism by the U.S. government.

At the request of Finance Officer Gibson, the board approved several regular business items for the upcoming year, including a Bond of Depository, Performance Bonds for the Treasure and Finance Officer, approval for an Audit Contract, and a Capitol Fund Request to transfer $40,952 from the Building Fund to Utility Payments. The board voted to continue its audit contract with Cloyd and Associates of London for the coming year at a cost of $11,000. The payroll schedule remained the same.

Director of Pupil Personnel Rondall Baker reported that attendance for the year stood at 92.5 percent, slightly up from last year, and enrollment is 445. The board also approved Baker’s request to approve the Nonresident Contract with Letcher County Schools to allow for as many as 129 students from either system to attend in the other system.

Genton also presented a parent petition to allow a child to attend kindergarten “early” if he passed two placement tests established by the school system. Genton said the little boy’s birthday is August 23, which put him 22 days past the state limit of August 1 for the school year. Burdine Elementary Principal Stacy Collier told the board that 27 kindergarten students have already pre-enrolled, which she said is a record.

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