By PATRICK CASEY
The Walton County School Board met on Tuesday, June 17, to handle several contract items in preparation for the end of the fiscal year.
Mark Gardner presented the board with an update on capital projects throughout the county. South Walton High School will have bathroom facilities built at the softball field. Walton Middle School is receiving sod for the new softball field that has been built on campus. Work is also being done on the Walton High School baseball field to improve the playing surface. Mossy Head Elementary School is about seven weeks away from completion. The new Walton High School is proceeding with roof work as the structure continues to make progress towards a summer 2009 completion date.
Board members ratified the yearly agreement with the Panhandle Area Educational Consortium to cooperate with school boards of other districts in this state in a Regional Consortium Service Organization that works for the acquisition of materials, supplies, equipment, contracted services and participation in programs and projects when such meets specific needs of the district and is deemed educationally or monetarily beneficial by the school board.
Board members also approved a new course description presented by Tom Blackshear to be submitted to the Deparment of Education for state approval and incorporation. The course is social studies-oriented in balancing conservation and development in local Florida environments. This includes the history and resources in an area driven by the political and economic decisions made during land development. The course, if approved, could be an elective or form a foundation of an environmental academy curriculum.
The Career and Professional Education Act of 2007 was approved. This requires each district to collaborate with local business and workforce agencies to establish a five-year strategic plan to perpare students for entering the workforce.
The board members also approved a measure to allow all middle schools the option to teach Spanish II for high school credit in middle school. Middle schools had been allowed only to teach Spanish I for high school credit in middle school.
The board voted to continue paying employees for both meals and mileage when attending one-day meetings, despite being presented with a measure to change the practice. Many districts do not reimburse for meals, though they do pay for mileage. The measure for change failed by a 3-2 vote, with the issue to be studied at a later date.
Trip requests were approved for six students and one chaperone from Freeport High School to attend a Josten’s Yearbook Camp at Auburn University on June 25-27. Walton High School’s girls volleyball schedule was also approved for the 2008-09 season.
The Walton County School Board will hold their next regular meeting on Monday, June 30, at 5 p.m., at the Tivoli Administrative Complex in DeFuniak Springs. The meeting has been moved up a day to follow a budget workshop at 4 p.m. that must be held on Monday, June 30.