The Newport Special School District held the regular monthly meeting on Tuesday, August 21st. All members were present.

            The first order of business was to approve the minutes from the July 17th regular meeting and the August 2nd special meeting. All voted to approve.

            Ms. Judy Clampit presented financial statements for June and July 2018 to the board. After little discussion, the board voted to approve the statements.

            In new business, the board voted unanimously to not sell the parcel of land near the elementary. The land is currently being utilized by the crop management and precision ag classes.

            Second, the board approved a document stating that they understand and will adhere to the requirements of Federal Funds to be used as a supplement and will not supplant (use federal funds for purchasing instead of using our local dollars) our non-federal funds.

            The board voted in favor of using Lynn Cooper, District Special Education Director, as liaison for Foster Care Students and liaison as a Surrogate parent, voted to pay assistant high school football coaches a stipend of $ 1,750 on their contracts due to the fact they work all football varsity games, and voted to pay a $ 1,000 stipend to the Assistant Band Director.

            The board voted to approve the payment of the annual vehicle insurance premium.

            The Superintendent asked the board to approve the District making applications for AMI days built into the 2018-19 school calendar. These allow students to complete school work online if inclement weather conditions prevent classroom attendance, and that bus drivers be allowed to work other jobs within the district to make up any days they miss due to the use of AMI days. The board approved.

            Colonel Jones requested and the board approved implementation of a plan for students to be active in servicing their community, accumulating hours toward school credits.

            The board approved a new plan for the Elementary Road Access. The amendment was needed due to the problem with the Geo-thermal system. The new plan would decrease the cost by $ 10,000.

            A second special needs bus route is needed. The board approved the addition of another bus route to address the problem.

            The board approved the purchase of 400 cases of copy paper for district use.

            During the Superintendent Report, Dr. Bennett offered appreciation for attendance, said that the use of the gates on Wilkerson during school hours has been successful and smooth-running, reported that the Hep A in Paragould was not in the school’s area and the GCT Superintendent feels that all students will be in no danger of contracting the disease, reported that all board members have a Board Leadership Training in October, reported that the renovations to the restrooms in the Administration Building will begin soon, and said that the school received a letter from ADE telling that the Special Education program met all the requirements.

            The board adjourned at 9:40 pm for a closed session. Returned to open session at 10:50 pm.

            The approved personnel changes included the resignation of Sherry Landrum, employment of Tenica Scott, employment of Donnie Shulz, and employment of several substitute teachers including Margaret Brumley, Elizabeth Curtner, Leah Duvall, Heather Gibbs, Jesica Redd, Dana Gist, Phyllis Gregory, Tonya Heath, Amanda Chapman, Janice Johnson, Liz Jones, Bo Hutchison, Gabrielle Fortenberry, Randy Moore and Erica Watson.

            Other substitute teachers approved pending approval of their federal, state, and Child maltreatment background checks include Betty Howard, Alexandra Walker, Luvnia Morgan, Robert White, Doyle Powell, Travis Linvell, Linda Harris, John Michael Scott, Nimisheben Taylor, Nicole Stephens, Erica Watson, Brenda Godair, Zayna Wooten, Rose Tayor, Elisha Arter, Neida Martinez, Maley bain, Kaitlynn Floyd, Timothy Sirmans, Melissa Willis, Erica Crump, and Austin Carter. 

            The board approved school bus drivers Randy Moore and Natalie Martin. The employment of all bus drivers, including those approved for hire at the July 17th meeting will be retroactive to August 13th, 2018.