Hawkins School Board votes to call bond election

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The Hawkins School District Board approved the call for a bond election with a total value of $5 million dollars to be held within the district on Saturday, May 5. The unanimous approval occurred at Thursday’s regular meeting of the board conducted at the Hawkins School District Administration Building.

The bond election is comprised of two propositions. Proposition A is a $4.1 million dollar proposal for the construction, renovation and equipping of school buildings, the purchase of new school busses, and the purchase of classroom technology. Proposition B is a $900,000 proposal for the installation of athletic field artificial turf. The motion was proposed by Board Member Ed Tunnell and seconded by Board Member Blake Warren. In discussions, Board President Robbie White stated that as the previous two successful bond measures had been comprised of only one proposition, the success of this election will be determined by the ability to educate the public on the two propositions.

Additional bond election support measures approved at the meeting were the naming of Live Oak Public Finance as the financial advisor to the district, the selection of a construction manager-at-risk delivery methodology, delegation of certain project authorities to Superintendent Morris Lyon and designation of the prevailing wage rates for Wood County. The approval of an interlocal agreement between the school district and the City of Hawkins will allow for a joint election. All bond election support measures passed unanimously.

Highlighting the board meeting was recognition of first grader Jace Evans, middle schooler Aspyn Beene and senior Emily Hodges as Students of the Month. Each student was recognized for their effort and achievements and received heartfelt applause from all present. Elementary School Principal Stephanie McConnell advised the board Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) is now being introduced to the elementary school students, and Middle School Principal Jason Boyd described the highly successful Model United Nations events.

Chief Financial Officer Robby Fair introduced discussion of changing the district’s fiscal year to July 1 through June 30, thus bringing it in line with the actual school year cycle of events. The superintendent called for the issue to be placed on a future agenda.

The call for a board election to elect two trustees for positions currently held by Blake Warren and Sam Hollingsworth was approved. The two positions will become vacant at the end of their terms. The election will be held on the uniform election day of May 5. A full term for an elected trustee at Hawkins ISD is three years.

Lyon’s efforts to create an Educational Foundation within Hawkins School District were strengthened by the approval of the firm Foundation Development Consultants as the contracted consultant for foundation development. Additionally, MEDSTOP, LLC of Longview was approved to be the contracted Telemedicine provider for Hawkins ISD.

After reconvening into open session after discussion in a closed session, the board approved the offer of one-year contract extensions to High School Principal Kelly Moore, Athletic Director Scott Evans, Middle School Principal Boyd and Elementary School Principal McConnell. A two-year contract extension offer to Chief Financial Officer Fair was also approved. All approvals were made unanimously.

Present at the meeting were board members Ashley Conner, Matthew Dacus, Ed Tunnell, Janice Vonner, Blake Warren and Robbie White. Board Member Sam Hollingsworth was not present.

The next board meeting is tentatively scheduled for Thursday, March 8.

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