The Demopolis City Schools Board of Education will amend the posting for the high school ACCESS Lab vacancy following a vote during a special called meeting Tuesday afternoon.
“All of us are very concerned about the success of students and providing the best learning atmosphere as we can,” Interim Superintendent Dr. Frank Costanzo told the board before making his recommendation to alter the posting to require a certified teacher in the position. “Currently the state department allows this position to be filled by a facilitator. Currently, the position of facilitator does not require the board to employ a certified teacher. However, in looking at student success and providing the best ability for student interaction – I’m not saying to you that there is not a person who would be able to step into that role who is not a certified teacher.”
Costanzo maintained that a facilitator is inherently limited in classroom management as well as at providing remediation and researching and relaying course information. Costanzo reminded the board there would be increased cost with making such a change as the position would move from a salary schedule equivalent to that of an aide to one equivalent with a certified structure.
The board unanimously voted to make the move. The posting is expected to be effective Wednesday.
The board also discussed exploring the acquisition of a facility designed to house career technical education programs.
“In some of our discussions, we have talked about acquiring a facility at some point, should the board feel like that is the way to go,” Costanzo said. “I did meet with Mayor Grayson last week in discussion about the New Era Building. I wanted to discuss with you to say to you that it would be something that would need to be revisited and looked at very closely. I would have loved as a superintendent to have had a facility that would have been able to provide the students a safe place to house instructional need in those areas. My concern would be, should the board invest in that building, what would happen if the city later needed it for new industry?”
Costanzo stated his belief that acquiring such a facility may place facility at the forefront of educational opportunities among Alabama public schools in terms of career tech opportunities.
“It could put us on the cutting edge, in my opinion, of all school systems in Alabama. I think it is worth investigating,” Costanzo said.
The board also voted to hire a construction manager to assess and complete the maintenance needs on the system’s four campuses. Costanzo noted the biggest of those needs includes painting, lock hardware, pressure washing and restroom repairs.
Additionally, the board voted to make Friday, July 3 a system holiday in view of Independence Day being Saturday.
Personnel moves approved during the meeting include:
- Resignation of Rodney Jackson as Demopolis High School health teacher, varsity basketball coach and varsity football assistant
- Transfer of Addy Card from second grade teacher at Westside Elementary School to fifth grade teacher at U.S. Jones Elementary School effective Aug. 10 where she will replace Stephen Campbell
- Transfer of Allison Cobb from seventh to eighth grade Science Teacher at Demopolis Middle School to seventh to eighth grade English/Language Arts Teacher at Demopolis Middle School effective Aug. 10 where she will replace Coty Geohagan
- Non-renewal of Alan Kasper as ninth to 12th grade Science Teacher at Demopolis High School
- Non-renewal of Carol Halkias as ninth to 12th grade Spanish Teacher at Demopolis High School
- Conditional employment of Patricia Moore as second grade teacher at Westside Elementary School
- Conditional employment of Sarah Chelsea Morgan as Kindergarten Teacher at Westside Elementary School
- Conditional employment of Sam Mosley as P.E. Teacher at Westside Elementary School
- Conditional employment of Whitney Mosley as third grade teacher at U.S. Jones Elementary School
- Conditional employment of Drew Luker as seventh grade Social Sciences Teacher at Demopolis Middle School effective Aug. 10
- Conditional employment of Kelly Gandy as ninth to 12th grade Career Tech/Technical Education teacher at Demopolis High School
- Hiring of Angela Richardson as lunchroom worker at Demopolis High School
- Hiring of Kathaleen Anderson as Demopolis High School ACCESS Lab Facilitator for Summer School 2015 only
- Hiring of Shelby Speegle as Demopolis High School ACCESS Lab Facilitator for first session of Summer School 2015 only
During a superintendent search work session following Tuesday’s meeting, the board established its timeline for hiring a new system leader. The board will hold its regularly-scheduled meeting July 14 at 5:15 p.m. at which time it will receive the list of five finalists from the Alabama Association of School Boards.
The Demopolis City Schools Board of Education will conduct interviews with the five superintendent finalists July 20-24 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Rooster Hall.