County schools lose 3 teachers

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Covington County Schools will operate with three fewer teachers next year, a decision Superintendent Terry Holley attributed to proration and enrollment decreases at two schools.
In a special called board of education meeting yesterday, members made 14 teaching changes, granted tenure to six teachers, hired two support personnel and granted non-probationary status to five support personnel.
After the meeting, Holley said the loss of teachers was due to decreasing enrollment numbers at Fleeta Jr. High School and Red Level School.
“And as you know, funding for teachers is tied to enrollment numbers,” he said.
At Fleeta, one elementary teaching position was cut, and board members transferred  Natalie Brousard to a similar position at Pleasant Home.
At Red Level, multiple changes were made, including those to staff the newly-created Red Level Elementary School. There, the board voted:
• to accept the resignation of Heather Walden as elementary school teacher.
• to transfer Kenneth Valrie Sr. from teacher at RLS to a teacher at the central office.
• to transfer Melissa Nall from English/language arts teacher to sixth grade teacher at RLES.
• to transfer Bridge Harper from third grade teacher to sixth grade teacher.
• to transfer Sara Robinson from first grade teacher to third grade teacher.
• to transfer Brenda Johnson from elementary counselor to half-time teacher and half-time counselor at RLES.
At Florala High School, the school year will end with the resignation of Michael “Stan” Gooden as special education teacher/coach; however, Red Level’s Janet Odom will transfer to FHS at the beginning of the school year to serve in that position. Holley said there is one vacant position – a biology teacher – that must be filled at the school by the beginning of the school year.
At Pleasant Home School:
• to non-renew the contract of Warren D. Kirkland as social studies teacher/coach. Holley said the board will advertise to fill this position.
• to non-renew the contract of Sally Gafford as special education teacher.
• to transfer Kristin G. Powell from fifth grade teacher to sixth grade teacher.
At Straughn High School:
• the resignation of Todd Reynolds as history teacher/coach. Holley said the board will advertise to fill that position.
At W.S. Harlan:
• to transfer Cara Cawthon from second grade teacher to third grade teacher.
Tenure was granted to the following teachers:
• Amber McKathan at FHS.
• Heather Blackwell at RLS.
• Kriston Bush at RLS.
• Tony Ingram at RLS.
• Christopher Thomasson at RLS.
• Jill Smith at SES.
Board members also approved the hiring of Whitney Geohagan as JAG teacher’s aide and Tracie Hollinghead as bus driver, both at SHS.
Non-probationary status was granted to the following support personnel:
• Annie Mae Salter as lunchroom worker at Fleeta.
• Linda Kilpatrick as lunchroom worker at PHS.
• Donna Armstrong as school nurse at SES.
• John Givhan II as technology personnel at the central office.
• Mickey Norris at the bus shop.