Piggott School Board Meets, Holds Annual Public Meeting
With Interim Superintendent Barry DeHart filling in for PHS principal Paul Seegraves, who had a tennis match, and Sherry Taylor who had another meeting, the annual public meeting of the Piggott School District was held Monday afternoon in the PES library.
During the gathering, principal Brock Swann gave a brief overview regarding the elementary in the past year. He noted that the school had around 430 students, and that Monday they received their bar code scanners and cards for the cafeteria and will hopefully have those up and running soon. He also stated they have begun a quest to be an “A” school. The school has created an “A” team (school improvement team), where members search out the weak areas in their ESSA report and create goals with incentives to encourage and improve the school. Swann explained the school has also started a new math curriculum, switching from Starfall to Reading Eggs and began their online literacy assessments which help with the ACT Aspire test.
DeHart brought PHS principal Seegraves's report to the people, indicating the high school had around 414 students. He also mentioned that FBLA finished sixth at national in Publication Design (Hannah Powell) and eighth in American Enterprise Project (Allison Killbreath).
In addition, DeHart brought information regarding the federal programs. Title I Part A received a preliminary allocation of $182,061.84, which is a decrease of $2,454.33. Title I funds are used for salaries and benefits for reading recover specialist, federal programs coordinator, instructional assistants and supplemental materials and supplies for teachers and classrooms. Title II-A attained a preliminary allocation of $29,484.99, an increase of $748.99. These funds are used for class-size reduction teachers, salaries and benefits. Title V-State is allocated $16,403.75, an increase of $452.64. These funds are used for the same purposes as Title I-Part A and Title II-A, along with professional development, teacher recruitment and retention, parental involvement activities and classroom supplies for both campuses.
DeHart also explained that the Arkansas Comprehensive School Improvement Plan (ACSIP) committee reviews the plan throughout the year to determine school improvement needs. He indicated decisions will be made about specific materials and programs that are purchased with federal funds.
Penny Toombs gave an overview of the PACE program. There are 30 elementary and 48 high school students, combining for a total of 78 students in the program. The program features seminars for grades seven through nine and 10 to 12, mentoring activities with pre-k, kindergarten, first and second grades, elementary quiz bowl, elementary chess which is open to all students. The also hold junior/senior high chess practices begin each Wednesday which is open to all students.
Both Toombs and DeHart mention that State Rep. Joe Jett and State Senator Blake Johnson are planning to attend “Take Your Legislator to School Month,” on the tentative date of Sept. 25.
Following the annual public meeting, members of the Piggott School Board convened for their regular meeting Monday evening at PES. After about an hour in executive session, the board unanimously approved to hire Lonzo (Trea) Peacock as the school's Student Resource Officer contingent on him attaining his Concealed Carry License.
Faith Conley came before the board, explaining she had created a prom committee consisting of herself, Amber Harrell and Jenna Mobley, among others. The committee had discussed prom dress code and agreed on one, which Conley presented to the board.
Guidelines are as follows:
Girls: must wear formal evening attire, cleavage area must be covered, splits and skirts cannot be higher than four inches above the knee, back of the dress must be above the natural waistline, skin cannot be seen through the front or sides of the dress or through cutouts with or without mesh, two-piece dresses must not show more than two inches of midriff undergarments may not show in any form.
Guys: must wear tuxedos or suits with dress shirts and ties, dress shows or newer clean boots but no tennis shoes.
Girls are to send three pictures (front, back, side of dress) of themselves in their dress to have them approved.
Guidelines apply to both Piggott students and their dates. The form must be sent in and approved two weeks prior to prom to ensure each student has enough time to assure their attire is approved.
The board unanimously agreed to accept the form and guidelines.
Additionally, the board briefly discussed purchasing a new lawn mower to replace the one being used for the football field. Interim Superintendent Barry DeHart was instructed to attain more information, and the matter was tabled.
Also, DeHart gave his monthly superintendent update. He reiterated that State Rep. Joe Jett and State Senator Blake Johnson plan to come to the school during “Take Your Legislator to School Month.” He also confirmed the asbestos has been removed from the band room, and demolition work will begin soon.
He also mentioned that the band boosters would like to take some of the bricks from the old band room, place a plaque on them, and sell them. DeHart is to check on any problems regarding the request. He also mentioned that Jon Wellman and Karen Coomer are certified from the Department of Homeland Security and are to train 12 students in order for them to obtain their certification as well.
In addition, board members unanimously approved the minutes from previous meetings, financial report, annual financial reports along with special ed annual financial reports for 2017-18 and fixed asset deletions.