The Effingham Community School Board heard a brief presentation from Joe Fatheree, a teacher at Effingham High School, on the his upcoming trip to Dubai as a Top Ten Finalist for the Global Teacher of the Year Award. Mr. Fatheree discussed how the positive recognition the district has been garnishing, because of his nomination, is largely due to the efforts of the staff and administrators. He asked the board to “stay the course, be visionaries, [and] do the background work that it takes to get there.” Mr. Fatheree will traveling to Dubai in March to find out about the award.
Principal Jason Fox of Effingham High School proposed a new after school program for students, called “Perfect Pals.” The program will allow for volunteer students to become pals with adults with disabilities housed at a variety of local facilities. Students will interact and play games with their designated pal under the supervision of trained staff. 60 students have already signed up for the program. The approval of the Perfect Pals Program, and a fund to support it, passed unanimously.
The district also approved a resolution to issue $650,000 in Taxable General Obligation School Bonds. The bonds are used to increase the district’s working cash funds in order to stay on top of maintenance and other expenses that arise during the year. Doing so allows the District to maintain the level of working cash available for the school year without raising the cost for taxpayers. The bonds are paid back by the district over the course of several years.
The District also approved the sale of an old school bus to the South Central School District for the price of $30,000 and renewed and agreement with the Regional Office of Education allowing Effingham Students access to alternative schools when needed.
Several rental agreements were also renewed allowing for the Regional Office of Education, C.E.F.S. Head Start Program, and E.I.A.S.E. to use space in district facilities for their programs. Rental rates were also set based on statewide standards.
Additionally, the district approved resolutions allowing Effingham High School to sell unused locker units and for the district to trade in old mowing equipment and purchase new mowing equipment. The Board also set the date for EHS Graduation on Sunday May 22 at 2:oo p.m.
The Board also heard a presentation from Michelle Beck on the District’s PERA, or Performance Evaluation Reform Act, progress. The act calls for student “student growth” as part of teacher evaluation. The District is in the process of implementing the law and will use it to continue to improve the instruction at Effingham Schools.