Greene County Board of Education hires CSFO

Katrina H

 

At a call meeting held Monday, March 13, 2017, the Greene County Board of Education approved a three year employment contract for Mrs. Katrina Hudson Sewell of York, AL to serve as Chief School Financial Officer (CSFO) for the school system. Mrs. Sewell is scheduled to begin work in the central office on March 27 following a two-week notice to her current employer, the Pickens County Board of Education.
Mrs. Katrina Sewell, a native of Demopolis, AL, received her Bachelor and Master Degrees in Business Administration from Faulkner University in Montgomery. She has served in various capacities in public education, including CSFO for the Sumter County School System for three years. Her work experiences include Accounts Payable Clerk, Business Marketing Teacher, Business Education Teacher, Information Technology Instructor and Career Coach.
Sewell was selected from the five finalists applicants selected to be interviewed by the board. She noted that she is in the process of completing her training for state certification as a CSFO and will continue that preparation in her position with the Greene County School System.
According to the State Codes of Alabama, the Chief School Financial Officer is directly responsible to the school board, but must work cooperatively with the school superintendent who serves as her supervisor on a day-to-day basis. The CSFO will in turn supervise at least three other central office personnel.
Ms. Sewell expressed a desire to secure a work position which meets her training and experience qualifications and would allow her to remain in this region.

Local board honored for School Board Appreciation Month – Superintendent questions state’s designation of failing schools in Greene County

During his report at the regular meeting of the Greene County Board of Education, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017, Superintendent James Carter stated that Robert Brown Middle School and Greene County High School have been designated by the State Department of Education as failing schools based on tests scores from 2015-2016. “It has been determined that Greene County School System has two schools that fall within the bottom 6% of schools in Alabama. Any schools within this range are placed on the failing schools list as referenced in the Alabama Accountability Act of 2013, revised in 2015,” Dr, Carter said.
Dr. Carter further explained that the state tests, the ACT Aspire in Reading and Math, were administered in the Spring of 2016 to grades 3-8 and grade 10. “We are not making excuses when we say that this was the first time these particular tests were administered to the schools.” He also noted that the tests results attributed to Robert Brown Middle School were from the former Carver Middle School and do not include students test results from the former Paramount School. Robert Brown Middle School began operations as a consolidated school from Carver and Paramount in August of 2016.
“I am concerned that Robert Brown Middle School is called a failing school when Robert Brown Middle School did not exist when these tests were given,” Carter said. He also noted that Greene County High School was not on the failing list in the previous year. “ This is somewhat perplexing for them to be placed back on the failing list after being off the list last year,” he added.

“The Alabama Accountability Act is just another scheme for tax credits and vouchers to be given to students’ parents who choose for their children to have a private school education,” Carter stated.
According to state reports, the Alabama Accountability Act helps students move from public to private schools with scholarships funded by tax credits. Approximately 70% of the nearly 6,000 scholarships went to children who would not otherwise attend a failing school.
Superintendent Carter also announced that the Robert Brown family has made a generous donation of $5,100 to the recently dedicated Robert Brown Middle School. Carter extended a deep appreciation to the family on behalf of the entire school system.
In recognition of School Board Appreciation Month, the board received special recognition and salutes from the schools and Central Office Personnel. Eutaw Primary students presented a creative dance as well as other treats. Robert Brown Middle School students serenaded the board and presented other treats. The Child Nutrition Program personnel gave the board members fruit baskets. Parent Involvement Coordinator presented a special Certificate of Appreciation to each board member. Greene County High School announced that it will make special presentations to the board at its Honors Program scheduled for January 31.
The board approved the following personnel items recommended by the superintendent.
Employment of Mrs. Sondra Terry as part-time Science Teacher at Greene County Career Center; employment of Tren’D’Mis Davis as Bus Driver and adding Ms. Tanesha Lyons to the current CNP Substitute list for 2017-2018 year.
The Administrative Services approved by the board included the following:
* Expand wireless opportunities for schools following additional review.
* Accept proposals for sale/lease of properties at former Paramount Jr. High and Carver Middle School.
* Approve lease agreement with Norfolk Southern Corporation for use of Paramount parking lot for a limited period of time, pending legal review and approval by board’s attorney.
* Payment of all bills, claims, and payroll.
Bank reconciliations as submitted by CSFO.
The following items were also presented at the meeting by Superintendent Carter:
* Advertisement for sale or lease of properties at Paramount Jr. High and Carver Middle School.
* Sale dates for surplus equipment at Carver and Paramount.
* Restrooms at Robert Brown Middle School have been refurbished and the hallways painted.
* Review of curriculum/instruction of Greene County schools.
* Develop program to recognize outstanding students and employees.
* Review each school’s master schedule to determine if maximum learning opportunities are provided to each student.
* Develop system for scheduling maintenance /work orders in timely fashion.
* Tutorial lab for primary grades and grades four and five.
* Seek foreign language instructors for primary and middle school grades.

Dr. Carter and board promote positive learning environment for students

The Greene County Board of Education, at its regular meeting held Monday, December, 19, 2016, approved a declaration that the entire school system must work to create and promote a positive learning environment for all students. The statement asserts that this is the responsibility and duty of every principal, teacher and all other personnel of the system.
The board established that “…every principal, teacher and other personnel must establish a positive learning environment for all students. An assessment of the positive learning environment will be conducted at the end of each academic year. If sufficient progress has not been made in establishing a positive learning environment, then the principal, teacher and or other personnel may be reassigned or terminated pursuant to the laws of Alabama.”
In his report to the board, Superintendent James H. Carter, Sr. brought further emphasis to the board’s position. “It is imperative that students have challenging standards and curriculum if they are going to be College and Career Ready. If students are going to achieve at their maximum level there should be a genuine partnership between school, family, and the entire school community,” Carter stated.
In his remarks, Dr. Carter said that in order to raise our students’ aspirations, there are two major components necessary. “The first is caring. There must be heartfelt care for students exhibited in all aspects of the education community. Secondly, students must feel like they belong. Every teacher and administrator will be encouraged to speak to each student as they enter the school building and the classroom. Teachers and principals will continue encouraging students to graduate from Greene County High School and take the next step.”Other aspects of Superintendent’s Carter’s remarks were as follows:
* Teachers and students must be sufficient in the use of technology. Technology must be integrated into all subject areas.
* Students will be encouraged to become actively involved in community services.
* Each school will be asked to schedule a school pride day and a school clean-up day.
* Teachers and Principals will set aside 10 minutes per day to have Get to Know My Students Time
* Students should be allowed to have a garden on their campus. This will educate students about the importance of growing your own food. It will also teach students not to be wasteful of food that is prepared for them.
* Professional Learning Community can change the way of educating our children. We know that educators meet regularly, share expertise and work collaboratively to improve teaching skills and improve the academic performance of students.
* Students will have an Early Dismissal at 12:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 20th
* Board Appreciation Month – January 2017.
The board approved the following personnel items:
* Termination of Sondra Terry, Part-time Health Science teacher.
* Resignation of Ivory Robinson, Elementary Teacher at Robert Brown Middle School.
* Payment for additional services contract for 2016 – 2017: (Separate Contract): Codarrin Wilson – Asst. Football Coach; Angel Cardona – Dance Line Sponsor.
* Resignation of Mr. Leon Dowe, Jr., CSFO Greene County Board, effective January 18, 2017.
* Search for a new CSFO.
* Appointment of Mrs. Cillia Morrow, Long-term Substitute Math Teacher at Robert Brown Middle School effective December 19, 2016.
* Authorized signatures of superintendent, board president and board vice-president at Bank of Tuscaloosa.
The board approved the recommended administrative services:
* Authorized the Superintendent to develop procedures for sale of properties at Paramount Jr. High School and Carver Middle School.
* Authorized Superintendent to advertise the sale of surplus equipment and supplies owned by the Greene County School Board.
* Authorized the Superintendent to have drinking water tested for lead.
* Authorized Superintendent to complete refurbishing the restrooms at Robert Brown Middle School.
* Create a career tech public database of real world improving projects that student of all ages can do.
* Field Trip Request for Robert Brown Middle School’s 7 – 8 grade to participate in the Disney YES (Youth Educational Series) Program in Orlando, FL on May 7, 2017.
* Renaming bank account at Citizen’s Trust Bank to Robert Brown Middle School.
* Payment of all bills, claims, and payroll.
* Bank reconciliations as submitted by Mr. Leon Dowe, CSFO.
The board approved the following instructional services:
* Develop a RFP format regarding Public Charter School Authorizer. The Public Charter School RFP will focus on At-Risk Students Program.
* Integrate attendance as part of a teacher performance evaluation.
* A positive learning environment must exist for all students. Therefore, every principal, teacher and other personnel must establish a positive learning environment for all students. An assessment of the positive learning environment will be conducted at the end of each academic year. If sufficient progress has not been made in establishing a positive learning environment, then the principal, teacher and or other personnel may be reassigned or terminated pursuant to the laws of Alabama.

 

GREENE COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION Prescribed Student Dress Code Grades K-12 Standard Dress Code

Girls:    Navy or khaki knee length skirts, jumpers, or shorts and
slacks.

NO JEANS    Long or short sleeves navy or white
polo  knit shirt or buttoned blouse (shirt or blouse with
collar).     Shirts in school colors bearing school logo
T-shirt is NOT PERMITTED
Navy or white undershirt if visible

Boys:               Navy or khaki slack or knee length shorts.
NO JEANS    Long or short sleeves navy or white
polo or oxford  buttoned front) with   collar.
T-shirt is NOT PERMITTED
Navy or white undershirt if visible

Boys and Girls

Shoes:      Navy, brown, tan, or black leather
low-top or deck shoes.  No restrictions
on  Athletic shoes.

 Belts:    Web or leather belt in brown, black, or navy must be
worn with all items of clothing that have belt loops.

 Outer wear (coats, jackets):      Students are  encouraged to
purchase adopted outer wear
in school colors.  If not purchased
adopted outer wear jackets should
be navy, black, khaki, or brown.
Students  will  not be allowed to
wear embellished jackets; i.e.
Racing, Pennzoil, M&M, etc.
jackets

Book Bags:             Mesh (navy, black, or brown) or clear.

If parents are unable to ensure that students comply with Greene County Board of Education’s Dress Code Policy, the student’s parents or guardians must file an exemption form with their child’s school, which establishes special extenuating circumstances.  Approval for the exemption must be granted by the Superintendent according to the guidelines set forth in the exemption action of the Greene County Board of Education Uniform Dress Policy and in accordance with the information requested on the Exemption Form.

SANCTIONS
Students not in compliance with the DRESS CODE will not be allowed to attend school.
These sanctions are based on the STATEWIDE ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY on
SCHOOL DISRUPTION. (File:  6-23)

School Board names consolidated middle school for former superintendent Robert Brown

robert brown

At its regular monthly meeting, July 18, 2016, the Greene County Board of Education voted unanimously to name the new middle school, formed recently with the combining of Carver Middle School and Paramount Jr. High, the Robert Brown Middle School.  Dr. Robert Brown was appointed as the first African American Superintendent of Schools in Greene County and served in that leadership position from 1970 to 1980. Prior to his appointment as superintendent, by the all African American member school board, Brown served as Principal of Paramount High School for three years, following his service as a science teacher at what was previously Greene County Training School.
According to School Superintendent Dr. James H. Carter, Jr., once new signage is obtained for the Robert Brown Middle School, the unveiling ceremony will be announced.
At the opening of his report to the board, Superintendent Carter brought forth a young man who had completed requirements for his high school graduation by attending summer courses.

Vince

Shown above  GCHS Principal Garry Rice,
 Vince Mullen and Superintendent Dr. James Carter

Vince Chevas Mullen, Jr., 18 years old, was determined to achieve his high school diploma even though he did not have sufficient credits to march with his Greene County High School classmates at the May 2016 commencement.  Mullen satisfied all course requirements through the summer school program offered in the school system, and plans to attend Shelton State Community College. He is the son of Cathleen Prater and the grandson of Ethel Giles of Forkland, AL.

In his report, Superintendent Carter noted that the first day of school for students is Monday, August 8, 2016. Institute Program for school personnel is Wednesday, August 3 at 8:00 a.m. at Greene County High School.  New Teacher Orientation will be August 1 & 2 at 9:00 a.m. at the Board’s Central Office.
The board approved the following personnel items recommended by the superintendent. *Recalled faculty and staff include: Erik Hendricks – Physical Education teacher at Eutaw Primary; Jerome Franks – Physical Education Teacher at Greene County High; Cordarrin Wilson – Teacher at Greene County Learning Academy; Linda Little – Social Studies Teacher at Greene County High; Romanda Askew – Cook at Eutaw Primary.
* New employment approved:  Malenie Wakefield – Science Teacher at the new middle school; Ms. Cassandra Glover – School Nurse; Teresa Atkins – Family and Consumer Science Teacher at new middle school; Jerome Franks – Physical Education/Driver’s Education Teacher at Greene County High; Ellanise Walker – Science Teacher at Greene County High; Mary Henderson – Part-time Secretary at Greene County Career  Center; Wanda Gaitor – Part-time Secretary at Greene County High.
* Reassignments approved: Sandra Gordon from 7th and 8th grade Reading Coach at Carver Middle School to 4th – 8th grade Reading Coach at new middle School for the 2016 – 2017 school term; LaJoycelyn Davis from Secretary/Bookkeeper at Carver Middle School to Secretary at new middle school for the 2016 – 2017 school term; Marilyn Sanford from Secretary/Bookkeeper at Paramount Jr. High School to Bookkeeper at new middle school for the 2016 – 2017 school term.
* Resignation: Bruce Jackson – Physical Ed/Driver’s Ed Teacher at Greene County High.
* Additional Service contract approved: for Jocephus Patrick – Track & Field Coach at Greene County High School for the 2016 – 2017 academic year. (Separate Contract).
Other points from Superintendent Carter’s report are as follows:
* All students will have opportunity to take AP classes.
* More students will be encouraged to participate in dual enrollment program at Shelton State as well as the University of West Alabama.
* Superintendent will organize a Superintendent’s Faculty Cabinet.
* Pacing guides will be placed on-line for parents to follow.
* Teachers will be required to develop syllabus for academic classes.
* Student grades will be available to parents in a timely manner.
* Professional development will be customized to needs of students and teachers.
* Teachers and principals will be required to develop curriculum guides for all core subjects.
* Local staff members will receive in-service training in use official curriculum documents that guide instruction.
* Use of Chrome Books as resource to teach computer science.
* Develop comprehensive curriculum for special needs students.
* Actively encourage more parental involvement in education of our children.
* Develop preventative maintenance plan for Greene County Middle School.
* Create landscaping plan for all Greene County schools to enhance campus beautification.
* Create menus in CNP Program that will be more inviting to students, but will meet the healthy lifestyles initiative.
* Organize all Greene County Schools to ensure safety for students and teachers.
Provide ACT tutoring for grades 9-12.
In other business the board approved the following administrative services:
* Revision of Information Guide for Parents and Students.
* Hiring a company that deals specifically with Chillers for repair of the A/C unit at new middle school.
* Agreement between board and Mattie J.  Strode to provide homebound instructions for identified children with special needs for 2016-2017 school year.
* Agreement between board and Helping Hands Therapy to provide Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapy for 2016-2017 year.
* Agreement between board and Woods Therapeutic Services, Inc. to provide Behavior Aides for the 2016-2017 school year.
* Agreement between board and Amy Wilson Quitt to provide Speech-Language Therapy services to children at Greene County Head Start for 2016-2017 school year.
* Agreement between Kim Herren to provide development delay services to children at Greene County Head Start for the 2016-2017 school year.
* Agreement between board and Community Service Programs of West Alabama to provide Special Education Services to eligible children in the Greene County Head Start Program for the 2016-2017 school year.
* Mission and Vision Statement for the Greene County Board of Education.
* Bid submitted by Johns and Kirksey for re-roofing Peter J. Kirksey Career Tech Building in the amount $168,000.
* Bid submitted by Borden Dairy Company as milk supplier for CNP -FY 2016-2017.
* Bid submitted by Flower’s Bakery of Birmingham as bread supplier for CNP FY 2016-2017.
* Payment of all bills, claims and payroll.
Bank reconciliations as submitted by Mr. Leon Dowe, CSFO.
The board approved the following instructional Items:
* All students will have the opportunity to take AP Courses beginning 2016-2017 school year.
* Develop a procedure and process to accommodate non-traditional students who request to participate in Greene County School’s athletic program.
* Require all students and employees follow a standard and professional dress code.
* Reconstitution of the Alma Mater/School Song at Greene County High School with the collaboration of the band director and choral music teacher.

School board retains Dr. James H. Carter as Superintendent

Dr. Carter

Superintendent Dr. James H. Carter, Sr.

 

At its monthly meeting held March 31, 2016, the Greene County Board of Education terminated its superintendent’s search and entered into a two year agreement retaining Dr. James H. Carter, Sr. as Superintendent of Schools.  The new contract goes into effect June 1, 2016.
Dr. Carter initially came on board with the Greene County School Board in June 2015 as a consultant through the Alabama State Department of Education. He has been serving as Interim Superintendent of the Greene County Schools since September 2015.
The board commenced its superintendent’s search last June 2015 and when Dr. Carter was asked to serve as the interim superintendent the search was put on hold in August until the following Spring of 2016.
In less than a year’s time, Dr. Carter has introduced various programs and initiatives to boost the academic and cultural exposure for students. These include developing academic partnerships with the University of Alabama, University of West Alabama and Shelton Community College; adding additional career-tech courses and opening a Performing Arts Program.
He has also been successful in securing qualified administrators and instructional personnel for the system.  Currently he is directing significant improvements and updates to the structures at the former Peter J. Kirksey Vocational School. At the March board meeting, Interim Superintendent Carter gave the following report:
* Carver Middle School and Eutaw Primary School will be the sites for the Summer Feeding Program.
* Summer school will be held the first week in June to the first week in July.  Lunches will be provided for those students enrolled.
* A two week Academic Academy will also be available for students at each of the schools during the first two week in June.
* Plans are to explore more academic and athletic scholarships for students.
* Develop more academic plans for special needs students.* Devise strategies to enhance the menus in the Child Nutrition Program.
* Allow Dress-Up Day for students and faculty twice a month.
* Devise action plan to assist students in scoring above 20 on the ACT.
* Expand course offering at Career Center.
* Board must sign up as Charter School Authorizer by August 1, 2016.
* Planning for Virtual School Pilot.
* Advance Ed will review school system documents regarding accreditation April 17-19.
* Principals, coaches and bus drivers should be certified in CPR.
* Planning mentoring and induction program for new teachers.
* Board work session with TCU scheduled for April 11, 2016.
* Board is pursuing consolidation of Carver Middle School and Paramount Jr. High. Board will hold community meetings throughout the county to discuss this proposal.
* Greene County High School graduation set for May 20, 2016, at 7:00 p.m. in the school’s gymnasium.
In other business the board approved the following Personnel Items as recommended by the superintendent:
* Employment of the following teachers at Eutaw Primary School at a rate of $25.00/hr for After School Tutorial Sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Lashawn Henley; Keshia Williams; Charlease Smith; Brenda Washington.
* Employment of the following teachers at Paramount Jr. High School at a rate of $25.00/hr for After School Tutorial Sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Shante Morton; Sukova Hicks; Felicia Smith; Mona Duncan; Brenda Grant; Tameshia Abrams; Lonia Dancy-Brown.
* Employment of the following teachers at Carver Middle School at a rate of $25.00/hr for After school tutorial sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Vanessa Bryant; Joseph Polk.
* Employment of the following teacher at Greene County High School at a rate of $25.00/hr for After School Tutorial Sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Tonia Sparks.
Employment of the following bus drivers at a rate of $15.00/hr for After School Tutorial Sessions – Funding Source: Title VI (March 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2016): Ayanna Crawford; Felicia Davis; Jammie Davis; Brendan Gaines; Jaida Goree; Joe Webb.
Under Administrative Services, the board approved the following recommendations of the Interim Superintendent:
* School Calendar for 2016-2017 School Year.
* Development of a school district teacher evaluation instrument commencing with the school year 2016-2017.
* Reorganization of the administration at Greene County High School.
* Permission to repair roof at Peter J. Kirksey Vocational Center.
* Permission to modify Peter J. Kirksey into a bus shop as funds come available.
* Payment of all bills, claims and payroll.
Bank reconciliations as submitted by Mr. Leon dowe, CSFO.
Designate Greene County High School as a storm shelter open to the community.
The following Instructional Items recommended by the Interim Superintendent were approved by the board:
* Requirement for all students to take Algebra I & II, Chemistry, and Biology prior to graduation commencing with the 2016-2017 incoming Freshmen students.
* A 9th Grade Academy at Greene County High commencing with the 2016-2017 school year.
* Cursive writing course for grades K-2.
* Financial independence course for grades 6-12 (Banking Course) and develop an agreement with Citizens Trust Bank and Merchants & Farmers Bank to provide support.
* Course that will encourage students to participate in voting process and to teach them more about local, state and U.S. government.
* Revision of the Information Guide for Students and Parents.

$239.987.12 distribution in Bingo

On Monday, March 2, 2016, Greene County Sheriff Jonathan Benison distributed $239,987.12 in bingo allocations from the four licensed gaming operations in the county. This distribution represented the January assessment 2016 payment.
The sheriff’s Bingo Rules and Regulations direct each licensed facility to distribute approximately $60,000 per month to the particular entities also determined by the sheriff. The recipients of the monthly distributions from bingo gaming designated by Sheriff Benison in his Bingo Rules and Regulations include the Greene County Commission, the Greene County Sheriff’s Department, the cities of Eutaw, Forkland, Union and Boligee and the Greene County Board of Education.
Sheriff Benison continues to withhold the Greene County Commission’s bingo allocation, which would total approximately $96,000 per month.  The Commission has not received its bingo payments from the sheriff since May 2015.
Green Charity (Center for Rural Family Development) gave a total of $60,000 to the following: Greene County Commission, $24,000; Greene County Sheriff’s Department, $9,000; City of Eutaw, $4,500; and the Towns of Forkland, Union and Boligee each, $3,000; Greene County Board of Education, $13,500.
Greenetrack, Inc gave a total of $59,987.12 to the following: Greene County Commission, $23,994.84; Greene County Sheriff’s Department, $8,998.07; City of Eutaw, $4,499.03; Towns of Forkland, Union and Boligee each, $2,999.36; Greene County Board of Education, $13,497.10.
Frontier (Dream, Inc.) gave a total of $60,000 to the following: Greene County Commission, $24,000; Greene County Sheriff’s Department, $9,000; City of Eutaw, 4,500; Towns of Forkland, Union $3,000 and Greene County Board of Education, $13,500.
Rivers Edge (YAPO) gave a total of $60,000 to the following: Greene County Commission, $24,000; Greene County Sheriff’s Department, $9,000; City of Eutaw, $4,500; Towns of Forkland, Union and Boligee each $3,000; and Greene County Board of Education,13,500.