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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

CCSC board slated to meet Thursday

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Dan Schroeder
The Clay Community School Corporation School Board will meet in regular session Thursday, at North Clay Middle School, 3 W. Knight Dr., Brazil. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.

New business topics include the following:

* First readings on school board policies 3445 and 6433, on cell phones provided to selected administrators within the corporation and seclusion and restraint,

* The suspension with pay of a Northview High School teacher from April 21 until all procedures on her employment with Clay Community Schools have concluded,

* A vote on the extension of administrative contracts,

* The first reading of a standardized grading scale with Clay Community Schools,

* The purchase of Apex Learning to replace NovaNet distance learning,

* The purchase of a vacant lot across the street from Meridian Elementary,

* The disposal of the temporary metal classroom building at Staunton Elementary,

* A vote on allowing the boy scouts to recruit in the schools and the legal requirements, and

* An update on the entire bus garage situation and contracting out school buses for maintenance services.

Those in attendance will be given an opportunity to speak and board members will also provide comments. In addition, CCSC Supt. Dan Schroeder will provide a report.

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Who specifically sets the agenda for the school board meetings? Is it the superintendent?

-- Posted by Claycountian on Sun, May 16, 2010, at 8:18 PM

Why would the board vote to extend administrator contracts just one month before the new board members take office?

That does not look or smell right.

-- Posted by seventyx7 on Sun, May 16, 2010, at 10:48 PM

The agenda for the school board is set by the superintendent with recommendations coming from members of the board. In my talks with board members, I was informed that, at times, they are polled to see if they wish to discuss items that another member asked to be included in the agenda. Only if a majority wishes to discuss the item is it included. One such item that has never made it into the agenda is to have less formal meetings, other than the regular session, with discussion between the members of the board and the public. This was proposed by Forrest Buell soon after he took office, but has never been included in the agenda except, I think, for a short statement and has never been put to a public and binding vote by the board. Basically, it is a case of "if you ignore an issue or situation, it just disappears" on the part of the administration.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 3:12 AM

The extension of the administrator's contracts are always voted upon prior to the end of the school year, if they are not, I believe that they end at the end of the school year.

What is more troubling to me is the fact that most of the contracts are presented to be voted upon by the board "en masse". A board member is asked to vote "yea" or "nay" to approve all or reject all with no vote taken in regards to any individual that I have observed in most years.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 3:19 AM

It is interesting that the board voted to deviate from their normal "second Thursday of the month" schedule. I do not know why as I could not attend the last meeting.

The minutes of the last meeting is not yet posted on the Board's website, as they have yet to be approved by vote of the board. The website had it's normal message last Thursday that the meeting is held the second Thursday of the month.

So, why wasn't the public informed that the regularly scheduled meeting would not take place before the regular date for the meeting instead of the first public announcement being this article?

Also, I have tried to view the minutes of previously held meetings that are supposedly posted on the Board's website but get an error message. I have no problem viewing the agendas posted. It makes me think that someone is trying to hide something from the public or to limit the public to going to the Central Office and requesting a hard copy.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 3:32 AM

Regarding School Board Policy 6433, seclusion and restraint, if this is concerning students, I am concerned as I have received four phone calls from different parents in the last week concerning staff physically restraining students in the middle school. In speaking with 15 -- 20 students or former NCMS students, it was disclosed that some teachers do a bit more physically than lay their hands on a student's shoulder to get their attention at times.

Before I started looking into this and what started me looking into it, there was an incident where a student was talking in class. The teacher wanted to call the parents with the student present, but the student went to his next class after that class. The teacher followed him into the next class, disrupting that class, then brought in a large male teacher in an attempt to intimidate the student into compliance. The male teacher used aggressive mannerisms, such as the pointing of fingers at a person while speaking to them and invading a person's personal space. According to what I've been told by the student's parents, the male teacher also "grabbed the student by the shirt". The parents have filed a complaint with the police on the incident and the legal issues are in the hands of the Clay County Prosecutor.

Is it our policy to tell students not to bully people and then practice bullying to attempt to gain their compliance? The parents involved state that the principal agreed that the situation was handled poorly.

I have been dealing with student problems at NCMS since it was opened as I have had relatives there most of the time. During the past two years, I've spent more time in the principal's office than I ever did as a student. I've sat in middle school classes at least once during each of the last two years and observed.

I find that some of the students are undisciplined and can see that it would be difficult to maintain a disciplined classroom; however, we have policies and procedures to deal with discipline without getting physical. None of the staff should be committing assault and battery or intimidation against a student in the attempt to force compliance. Physical contact by staff towards the students should be strictly limited to what is required for instructional purposes, self defense, and to prevent injury to others or the violent student, period.

If you would not do it to a judge on the courthouse steps, don't do it to a student!

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 12:22 PM

Bus Garage:

Since 2007, the corporation has been looking to replace the current bus maintenance facility. The board and the public have been informed of the administration's opinions on the square footage, height of ceiling, type of building, acreage of property, number of bays, and various other physical attributes needed or desired for the new facility. Various properties have been looked at and rejected, however, based upon what has been presented to the Board and the public, this has been done solely on opinions without substantiating facts.

a. What has not been disclosed to the public or the Board is a list of the maintenance procedures that is performed within the current building and planned, by the administration, to occur within the new one.

i. There is a "need to know" of precisely what processes occur in far greater detail than the general, all-encompassing term of "bus maintenance". The term "bus maintenance" encompasses everything from making sure the lights all work to stripping a bus to its frame and completely re-building it.

b. Questions:

i. How many of our buses are under warranties, when do those warranties expire, what systems, parts, and labor do the warranties cover and what maintenance must we provide these buses?

ii. From our maintenance records on our vehicles and equipment, with what frequency are maintenance procedures performed including scheduled maintenance (such as oil changes, belt inspections and replacement as required, brake component replacement, etc.) and corrective maintenance such as component replacement of alternators, pumps, differentials, wheel bearings, etc due to component failure.

iii. What capabilities does our current shop have (with current equipment and personnel) that the maintenance records do not justify maintaining? We occasionally have need of towing a bus, but it is not often enough to justify buying a wrecker or incurring the expense of maintaining one and employing employees qualified and trained to operate it. Do we have other capabilities that we do not require in such frequency to justify having the equipment, tools, and employees on payroll to be able to accomplish as it would be more cost-effective to contract or hire-as--needed as we do with mounting tires on the rims? Should we have the capability to pull an engine / transmission, do extensive body work, perform welding operations (although consideration of welding equipment and a trained welder must be also include any usage by Buildings and Grounds) or any other procedures that occur infrequently.

Frankly, the board and the public have had recommendations from the administration based upon people's opinions, however, good, informed decisions are based upon facts.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 12:34 PM

...and how much did the newly elected board members educate themselves on these matters before voters voted them into office????

Water under the bridge at this point but as to the middle school, since my oldest daughter attended it has been intimidation instead of mutual respect and an aura of a prison. While the teachers deserve the respect and the bulk of them were there for the student, so do the students deserve respect and there are a few "in power" there who definitely set the tone. I too ate lunch with my kids often when they were at the middle school to make sure that their rights weren't violated and witnessed out of control yelling on part of an administrator more than once...to the point that I almost intervened myself.

-- Posted by Jenny Moore on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 3:50 PM

I believe the challenge of every Administrator and teacher is to create that healthy balance of a disciplined classroom, but one in which real learning can take place because of the positive student/teacher rapport. It's a fine balance that must be tended to and readjusted throughout the year. The old saying goes, "Don't smile until November" to start the school year out right. Schools must have disciplined students who will listen to an adult authority figure "in loco parentis". If the student doesn't comply to a teacher's directions, he/she should be immediately removed from the classroom. There is no place in a public school for an undisciplined, obstinate student. And if the teachers seem as though they are assertive, perhaps it's because they should be. They are teaching large groups of students, protecting your students from aggressive students, and ensuring no one comes in from the outside into their building to abduct or harm your children. Does anyone remember Columbine anymore? An extreme example, but it was the teachers who protected the surviving students, some of them giving up their own lives to do so. I've seen the actual footage. And I believe the shooters were two undisciplined, obstinate students who felt they didn't have to answer to anyone.

-- Posted by Claycountian on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 5:37 PM

This may not be the place but..........

Where do the lines between CCSC and CCDFS cross. People "homeschool" their kids so they don't have to bother with things like making sure their kids have good hygiene, social skills, and...... an education.

I personally know several kids who have been lost in this loophole, and they will not have a chance in the Adult world, they will be the next welfare generation....it has to stop.

-- Posted by reddevil on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 6:07 PM

Hey reddevil...what does CCDFS stand for?

-- Posted by Claycountian on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 6:16 PM


I cannot believe someone who knows so much about education, could finish dead last in the past two elections. You are seriously posting things at 3:00 in the morning? Is your internet server that slow for it to take so long to find this stuff on the web? Who was the second shooter on the Grassy Null? Who really shot JFK? Thought I would find out!.


Once again you have given opinions on things that you really have no base to make. How would you suggest getting 350 plus middle school kids to pay attention? What possible rights could be violated in 6-8 grades?

Jenny and Leo,

I have never in my life come across 2 more bitter, negative, and pesimistic people. Everything that is done by CCSC is given your negative seal of disapproval. Have either one of you ever taught a class? You both have every answer for everything that those poor people try to do.

Why haven't you tried to get a principal's license to fix the problems that you apparently know about. Perhaps you should both be counselors to help work with their unchallenged minds. Perhaps Superintendent's license to try and run a school corporation.

Crazy thought maybe on my part- Stop whining, stop complaining, and stop dominating the discussion board with pointless and seemingly endless drivel.

-- Posted by Ron Archer on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 7:10 PM

LLamaMan, teachers should, without a doubt, be respected by students. Respect is earned by the individual, not merely given by position. You lead by example, not by position. We have many fine teachers,but we will always have ten percent who will not meet the high standards set within the corporation by their peers.

Your statement that "There is no place in a public school for an undisciplined, obstinate student." scares me. The reality is that is where the undisciplined, obstinate student needs to be to learn not to be an undisciplined, obstinate adult as they obviously have not learned better in the home. Better for them to learn in the school what society expects than in the Dept. of Corrections or from the welfare dept. as they raise another group of undisciplined, obstinate children.

It is one thing to demand respectful speech and acts in the classroom, it is quite another to try to "bully" a student into compliance. It is, likewise, one thing to calmly discuss the errors in behavior in the principal's office and quite another to have a large male teacher raising his voice, "getting in a student's face" pointing his finger in said student's face, or grabbing a student in any way shape or form. The latter is not discipline, it is bullying, period. It is strictly "I'm bigger than you so you will do as I say."

That didn't fly even in the Marines in a war zone. It doesn't fly in Boot Camp. You are trained to lock your hands to the seams of your trousers if in a confrontation with someone to prevent physical contact. Physical contact should not be happening in our schools, period. Physical contact is assault and battery.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 7:17 PM

reddevil - there are many parents who home school and actually prepare their children for adult life better than our public schools can. There are some who do exactly as you say. Then again, there are also graduates of our schools who are career welfare recipients or residents of the Dept. of Corrections. There are some non-graduates who found a job and go to work every day, raise their kids to be good students, and do their best to see that their children do not make the mistake that they made.

The fact of the matter is, when my child was in elementary school I had to go on welfare while waiting for my VA Disability to be granted. In the three years that I was in that process, I couldn't work, the savings ran out, and we came within thirty days of being homeless and on the street. Many people who have not been in that position do not know what it is like to not have the money to pay basic utilities, rent, and buy groceries. Many times, people who have not been there judge people as lazy or incompetent who are actually working harder than the person with money ever has just to survive and worrying themselves to death in the process.

I'll take a guess as to the answer to LLamaMan's question. By CCDFS, are you meaning the Clay County Division of Family Services? In the telephone book, it is listed as the Clay County Welfare Office, but I know the sign out front reads different.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 7:40 PM

CCDFS- The Welfare Check people, Clay County Division of Family Services. We work to make the money, the Gov. takes it from us, hands it to them (CCDFS), and they redistribute it to the ones who dont work.

-- Posted by reddevil on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 8:14 PM

Re read what I said...Most of the teachers are stellar. No argument here, BUT administration sets the tone and there is always room to strive for better. When we settle for less than that perfect goal, we cannot expect to improve, but far worse to fall behind others who are still striving to be better.

While some think I am always complaining, I am only trying to have people not be complacent, which I think is a problem not only here but at many schools in our country. If we don't continue to try to always be better, we will be looking at the back end of those who have excelled and passed us along the way.

My comments are not to be always critical but to either improve or weed out those who are not pulling their weight.

We have plenty of administrators who are trained to do their jobs and do this. It's our job as tax payers and voters to make sure these people are doing their jobs.

If people who know that there are teachers and administrators who are not doing their jobs and do nothing about it, they are not only letting themselves be cheated as it's their taxes that are paying them, but it is allowing them to cheat our future leaders by not preparing them to take on active roles in our community. Part of this "job" is to help students learn about how to function in society. This is best learned by examples and not total bullying type intimidation. Some kids only get this at school...and as mentioned those who are not part of a "functioning" family never attain the experience if they are home schooled. Unfortunately we don't live in a perfect world which is why we have to keep trying to do better.

-- Posted by Jenny Moore on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 8:41 PM

All of the postings that I have read from you Jenny, at no posting did I see you type in the words "most of the teachers are stellar". Who are you or anyone else to say what is being done is not the very best. I am certainly in no position to defend the schools, but I can say with certainty that the teachers, instructional assistants, counselors, cooks, custodians, secretaries, or administrators don't wake up and say to themselves, "you know, today I am not going to do my best. Today, I think that I am going to try and mentally challenge all the students for a change so I don't have any discipline problems." What gives you the right to sit there, continuously type away against things that don't fit your family or your beliefs in education. How about a solution for a change? The perfect world will never exist, no matter how bad we want it to. I am sure there are kids who simply choose to misbehave. I am sure there are kids(parents too) who simply want the best grade possible for no work. My teacher friends tell me they can give the kids the information that will be on a test, page by page, word for word, and give them an open book test, yet they still don't perform well. These poor teachers are being graded on how well kids perform on standardized test, when teachers cannot control how seriously the kids take the tests. I suppose you think this is holding them to a higher standard? Have you ever worked with high school kids, not your own, but kids that you have no connection or relationship with? My guess is that you don't want to face that since you will see the difficulty that the job presents. Take the job for one week and then tell us all how easy it was to inspire, motivate, and teach. Tell us how easy it was to maintain class discipline. Tell us how easy it was dealing with the middle and lower end kids. It probably is easy to deal with the high level kids. They have the motivation and desire to work hard. If you can do that, I will proclaim you are an absolute authority on education and give you my full support for the next school board elections.

-- Posted by Ron Archer on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 10:48 PM

WOW!!!!! After reading the drama here i am even more convinced that both Leo and Jenny take turns stirring the large smelly pot of fertilizer they created. The reason he finished dead last in the elections is because all the voters in our county are smart enough to see thru him. Can anyone imagine having Leo and Forest on the same school board.......OMG Betty what a mess would that be!!!!

As for the accusations of mistreatment at the middle school i have had three sons go thru the NCMS and with the exception of a couple teachers who have their job only because of tenure I beleive the entire staff does a pretty good job there. As with most disclipine problems the problems that stand out in my mind at NCMS are the result of parents choosing to allow their kids to raise themselves. But that is an entirely different rant that i am not getting into this evening.

To the parents who support the staff at all our schools please keep doing so. They need our support. To those of you who are allowing people like Leo and Forest Buell to tell you the way homes and schools should be ran please take time get involved in your kids education and life. Go to school board meetings, get to know your kids teachers and the staff at the school they are attending. Listen to what these people are saying about your childrens actions and be mature enough to accept that all kids make mistakes in their decisions. When those mistakes are made, just like in the adult world, there are consequences. The majority of teachers and staff are great educators and care deeply about all our kids and their future. There is a handful of teachers who are just mean spirited. If you are personally involved you will soon be able to identify those teachers and advise your kids about how to get thru school AND LIFE with people like those mean people.

-- Posted by jddriver4960 on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 11:01 PM

I fogot one question that has crossed my mind a few time in the recent past. Jenny, how long have you lived in our community? For some reason i am thinking you are a realtive new comer. Is that true?

-- Posted by jddriver4960 on Mon, May 17, 2010, at 11:05 PM


-- Posted by GO HOOSIERS on Tue, May 18, 2010, at 1:16 AM



-- Posted by GO HOOSIERS on Tue, May 18, 2010, at 1:30 AM


I was born and lived in the United States all my life. In Clay County 15 years. Is that what you consider a newcomer?? Is the problem may be that I have other locations to compare ours to and find that I have seen things work in other places that could work here better than what is being done now?? Why is that a problem? I did not think that a person had to achieve tenure when moving to a community before they could give an opinion.

Your attitude of us and them is one of the problems. I don't see two different sides. I see trying to help improve on what we've got in any way we can. What I do see is a fear of stepping out of line to correct poor performance on the part of the teachers and administrators who are not getting the job for which we are paying them done. If the parents don't report to the building supervisors, the few poor performing teachers will still be short changing students in future years. Sure it might not be corrected right away for one's own child as procedures have to be followed, but I see problems that have been occurring year after year that should have been curtailed a generation ago as when I talk to another parent about it , THEY themselves had the same problem when they were in school with the same teacher in some cases. Just inexcusable.

I can only give my perception, but here it is...

In this community it is not "nice" to speak out when things are not working or an individual is not doing their job as it might cause a rift between a person and that poor performing person who might be a neighbor or a fellow church member.

That said being a nice person and being a good person are two different things. I am not a nice person but believe that to be a good one I need to stand up and be a gadfly in order to try to get things improved for those students who year after land in that one class with a lousy teacher who has never been corrected.

I have never said that the entire population of teachers or administrators was lousy but do remember that the principal at the middle school was fired not too long ago...even though there was some legal problem with the way the board did it and it was rescinded, there must have been some reason for them to think that his performance wasn't too "stellar"

-- Posted by Jenny Moore on Tue, May 18, 2010, at 10:05 AM


That was not in quotation marks as a direct quote but a reference to my opinion which I have stated multiple times. That 99% of the teachers are here for the right reasons, for the student and are great teachers.

This fact however is no reason to not try to correct the performance of that 1% who we are paying while they are not doing their job.

-- Posted by Jenny Moore on Tue, May 18, 2010, at 10:10 AM

This country has gone soft, and each generation is softer than the last. Let's review all the studies, and see how many people's feelings have been hurt, and come up with an alternative which isn't nearly as effective but doesn't upset people so much. I think that pretty well sums up today's attitudes in everything, schools, work, government. What ever happened to 'if you misbehave, you get a paddling (not timeout)', 'if you commit a crime, you go to jail (not rehab)', 'if you are able bodied and don't work, you don't eat'. I am sure all of our founding fathers have rolled completely over in their graves just so they don't have to watch what we have become. Take care of your kids so others don't have to! It absolutely does NOT take a village to raise a child. It takes responsible, caring parents who instill proper values in their children. When tolerance of others leads to tolerance of irresponsible behavior, it's time to re-evaluate the situation. School board members need to worry about what is best for the community, teachers need to worry about what is best for the student, and parent's need to worry about what is best for their children. "He grabbed the student's shirt"??? Are you kidding? Did the student do what was asked of him? And let me guess, the parent's are just sure that little johnny didn't do anything wrong, it had to be that mean teacher who has it in for him and has been giving him all those bad grades. This is ridiculous, let's find some more sympathetic programs to spend money on and don't hurt anybody else's feelings, THEN it will all go away.

-- Posted by almostfootballfree on Tue, May 18, 2010, at 12:16 PM


-- Posted by GO HOOSIERS on Tue, May 18, 2010, at 2:37 PM

Let the Scouts in the schools.

-- Posted by huh on Tue, May 18, 2010, at 8:01 PM

Does the 1% not doing their job Jenny have to give kids all A's? Again I go back to the same question that I have posted before, what makes you the expert on education? Can you name the 1%? Can you at least identify their subject areas? Perhaps you cannot do any of these things and just like to keep your name in the public eye, no pun intended. I challenge you to simply try the job for a week, one simple week, and with you expertise on everything education, teach the teachers that are not doing what you think they should be doing the error of their ways. As Smokey the Bear would say, "only you can prevent a poor education", oh wait, that was forest fires wasn't it.

-- Posted by Ron Archer on Wed, May 19, 2010, at 6:41 AM

electric eye:

Go read Leo's blog and my comments there. I am not going to waste time and space here repeating my response over again to those who cannot respect other people's opinions if they are different than theirs. You make the error to think it is me that I want to have in public eye. It is only the school's problems, so others too can work to correct them as well with those of us who are trying to, not only for today's students, but tomorrow's as well.

-- Posted by Jenny Moore on Wed, May 19, 2010, at 9:33 AM

That is all that you have done ever since this has become available for comments. Waste time and space repeating yourself about how terrible everything that CCS does is. You and Leo have made some valid points in the past, but the two of you have really worn out every possible angle to what you are wanting from education. You say that you opinion is not respected, I think that your opinion is simply worn out. The intersting part of conversations and differences in opinion is that when someone calls you out on something that you are against, then you get awfully quiet. (See try teaching for one week and tell everyone how it is).

-- Posted by Ron Archer on Wed, May 19, 2010, at 9:11 PM

I have to agree with JDDRIVER4960.

They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over .. and expecting a different end result.

Not every move the board makes differently from week to week should be regarded as 'sly' or 'under the table'. Ever take a different route to work? If not, maybe you should.

-- Posted by Emmes on Thu, May 20, 2010, at 12:04 PM

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