Whitesburg KY
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School meal prices will increase some

The Letcher County Board of Education has approved increases in the price of school meals. School officials say the decision shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone familiar with rising fuel and food costs.

“Everybody knows that prices are having to go up,” Letcher Schools Supt. Anna Craft said. “We’ve only had one small price increase and I think we only did that in the last eight years.”

The price of student breakfast increases from $1 to $1.25 and the student elementary lunch price has been raised from $1.50 to $1.75. The high school lunch price is now $2 instead of $1.50.

“The reason that we elected to give the high school a different lunch price is they have so many more choices up there,” said Craft. “You still can’t eat for $2 anywhere else for what they serve up there. It is a wonderful lunch.”

Craft said children who receive reduced-price lunches will pay the same amount as before.

Craft said Cora Sturgill, director of food services, decided upon the new prices after looking at last year’s budget.

“We went back to where she went in the hole at the end of the year and I said go back and tell me what you would have needed to break even,” said Craft.

Craft said Sturgill will also have to account in her budget for a one percent raise for classified employees who work in food services.

In other business at its July 28 meeting, the board was told that after months of construction the baseball field at Letcher County Central High School is substantially complete.

“We have a field that we can finally play on,” said Darrell Douglas, a landscape architect with Sherman Carter Barnhart. “I am happy to say we have reached substantial completion on the baseball field.”

Douglas said contractors will have one month to complete a punch list to fix minor problems including some painting and caulking.

The board also:

• named Wade Quillen, a custodian at Letcher County Central High School, as the district’s employee of the month.

• approved advertising to solicit bids for gasoline/diesel fuel, lubricants, antifreeze, tires/tubes and retreading.

• appointed Kenneth Cornett, Tex Isaac, Linda Hall, Kelly Hall, Cheryl Denise Yonts, Oscar Back, Jackie Collins, Tracie Howard, Regina Donour, and Janet Caudill to serve on the district’s personnel evaluation committee.

• approved a contract with Kentucky Valley Educational Cooperative to participate in the Safe Schools Program for the Letcher County School System for the 2008-2009 school year at a cost of $6,550.

• entered into a contract with LKLP Head Start for the Letcher County Food Service Program to provide breakfast and lunches to the Colson LKLP Head Start Center.

• approved a grant with the University of Kentucky Appalachian Math and Science Partnership. This project is to help middle and high school teachers obtain math content knowledge to improve classroom practices to increase student achievement consistent with state and No Child Left Behind (NCLB) requirements.

• approved a waiver, agreement and consent to annexation by the City of Whitesburg for the property owned by the board at Ermine where Letcher County Central High School is located.

• approved renewal of a contract with Appalachian Regional Healthcare for drug screening services of new employees for the Letcher County School System.

• approved payment of $156,651.49 to Elliott Contracting for services rendered for the construction of the new baseball field.

• approved an architect’s contract with Richardson and Associates of Whitesburg for construction of the sidewalk project for the Safe Routes to School Project.

• approved restructuring the girls’ basketball program’s coaches’ pay to combine the 12 percent assistant coach’s pay with one junior varsity/freshman coach position of $2,000 and to divide the total between two assistant coaches with equal pay. One junior varsity/freshman assistant coach position will remain at $2,000.

• approved an extra service position for each school to provide a coordinator through the Letcher County Prevention Project to implement a curriculum that addresses the prevention of prescription drug diversion during an afterschool program.

• established a classified program assistant II/Family Resource Youth Service Center (FRYSC) worker position for the West Whitesburg/Cowan FRYSC program. It is a 185-day position for four hours a day which will be based on the program assistant II district salary schedule.

The board also learned last week that Ricky Warf of Thornton, who has been a teacher at Beckham Bates Elementary School, has been hired as the new principal at Beckham Bates, and that Amanda Black, Early Steps coordinator at Beckham Bates, has been hired as head cheerleading coach at Letcher County Central High School.

The board also accepted resignations from Mark Johnson, a teacher at Letcher County Central High School who will become football coach at Jenkins High School; Eugina Seals- Sparks, a teacher at West Whitesburg Elementary School; Jason Bates, a teacher at Letcher County Central High School; Jason Sparks, band teacher and assistant band director; and Richard Cornett, bus driver for Letcher County Central High School.

The next board meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. on August 25 at the Letcher County School Bus Garage.

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