By CHAD ABSHIRE
WILLIAMSON - The Mingo County Board of Education met Tuesday evening, discussing various topics.
Present at the meeting were: President William D. Duty; board members Mike Carter, Orville Messer and Stephen Marcum; and Superintendent Randy Keathley. Vice President Jacqueline Branch was absent.
After passing the minutes of the previous meetings, the board discussed four out-of-state trips. Two trips to the Jenny Wiley Theatre were approved, as were trips to Orlando, Fla., and San Antonio, Texas. The latter two were for the National Leadership Conference.
The next topic of discussion came from Duty, who posed the question to Keathley: If a full-time teacher and a substitute teacher were to apply for the same extra-cirricular position, like a coach, who would be preferred?
After a lengthy talk between Keathley and Duty, the answer was made clear.
“As I know it, there is no preference,” Keathley said. “There is no weighted matrix, unlike teachers. Professional credentials matter more.”
If both teachers had certification, the decision for the position would be made during the interview, Keathley said.
However, Keathley gave an example where teachers are favored.
“If we have a citizen coach, someone with much more experience versus a teacher without any, the teacher is preferred.”
The board also discussed statistics, like graduation and dropout rates.
“I believe we’re right on track,” Keathley said regarding lowering dropout rates.
Those numbers, however, may be skewed based on a number of things, like students who move away, become a fifth-year graduate or pass away.
“Even if a fifth-year graduate finished with his or her degree, it negatively affects droput and graduation rates,” Keathley said.
Near the end of the meeting, Rob Bobbera spoke to the board regarding an invitation they had received from Glenville State College.
The Hidden Promise Consortium was offered to Mingo County schools, which would offer mentoring to students in grades 8-12, offer teacher-to-professor collaboration to make the transition to higher education smoother, grant scholarships to students and more.
Duty was concerned, at first, regarding the invitation, asking if it would place too much onto teachers, with how much they might already have.
He was told that teachers would volunteer to participate.
After a brief discussion, the president urged the board to accept GSC’s invitation to the Hidden Promise Consortium.
The next meeting of the Mingo County BOE will be July 2.