By Al Owens
Meeting in regular session last week the Lewis County Board
of Education was treated to several success stories beginning with the Lewis County
Middle School Academic Team.
Coached by Bill Billman and Charity Burriss the Academic Team
won the Limestone League Tournament and is preparing to compete in the Governor’s
Cup Competition. Two large, beautiful trophies were displayed.
The School Board presented each team member with a certificate
commemorating that achievement. Several parents were on hand to see the presentation.
Brad Hughes with the Kentucky School Board Association drove
from Louisville to attend the meeting.
He is currently traveling around the state attending school board meetings to listen
to the types of issues, questions and success stories at the local level and take
those back to Frankfort.
Superintendent Maurice Reeder, Jr. lauded the JROTC Veterans
Day Program. He said that it was a tremendous success, and that more veterans attended
the program this year than ever before.
Reeder told the board that the state has issued a report covering
the last six or seven years showing the schools that have made the most progress
on the CATS scores over that period of time, and Lewis
County is 16th out of the top 20 schools
in the Commonwealth.
Eric Bloomfield, CPA, Portsmouth,
OH was on hand to give the 2004-2005 annual
financial audit report. Bloomfield explained
the basic processes used in the accounting procedures and told the board that no
instances or findings of noncompliance with either state or federal records was
found. He said the schools got a good, clean audit.
that the school district enjoyed an increase in revenue in the general fund of about
$250,000 over the previous year, most of that coming from state revenue sources.
He said that total revenues came to $11,819,424; expenses
totaled $11,372,549 leaving an excess of $437,875. Regarding the district’s assets
and liabilities Bloomfield said that
the major change was an increase in the cash position of about $350,000.
The CPA commended board treasurer Joe Kennedy and his staff
for keeping such good records and said that they did a fantastic job. He pointed
out that he doesn’t find that kind of expertise in many places.
The board approved that financial audit report.
Larry Riley, principal at the Lewis
County Middle School,
told the board about his school’s use of the two half-day school days.
use that time to analyze data from the CATS scores in order to develop strategies
to continue progressing toward the school’s academic goals.
The board approved a contract with Med-Brook from West
Virginia for drug testing of the bus drivers and mechanics.
It also approved the receipt or accelerated reading money
from the state. The amount received for each student is based on the average daily
The board approved the KETS matching offer of assistance.
The offer this year totals $28,155 and is used for technology and technical equipment.
The board must match that amount for that purpose.
The board approved a change order for the project. A masonry
wall is being installed in the library, and a small hodge podge of other little
things must be done. With the adjustments in the changes the work on the change
order totals $726.80.
he board approved the 2005-2006 indirect rate cost. The school
board helps pay for the overhead in the school cafeterias and then gets reimbursed
by the state at a set rate, about 10.53 percent.
The board approved the bids totaling $1712 on some surplus
property that was sold. That mostly involved some old vehicles, and the mechanics
felt that the prices bid were fair.
The board approved the application for a Striving Readers
grant. Instructional Supervisor Diane Johnson said that the school board was applying
for the maximum of ten million dollars. That money would cover the entire program
and would provide salaries for several teachers to help in the reading program.
Riley told the board that LCMS has a school wide reading program
in place. Every student is involved in that reading program. He said that the school’s
scores were up in math due to the success of the connected math approach, but science
is a problem area that the school is working on.
He pointed out that the gap between free and reduced lunch
students is closing quite drastically.
Riley also said that gains were being made in social studies,
writing portfolios and in arts and humanities as well.
Jamie Weddington, principal at the high school gave a similar
report to the board. He said that the high school has made its Annual Yearly Progress
goals for the past three years.
Weddington added that the high school is ahead of the curve
as far as the index is concerned and that the school is ahead of the state mean
in all areas except reading and math.
Teachers are using the data from the CATS scores to help individual
students set and achieve their goals.
Riley related that the Middle School has been making steady
progress and said that Paula Lewis and Kevin Duff, his predecessors, deserved credit
for much of that progress.