By Jeff Noble
The search is on for a new principal at Corbin High School.
And while an interim principal is now in place, the Corbin Board of Education wants to make sure they’ll get the right person for the job.
Board members were updated on the status of the selection during their regular meeting Thursday at Corbin Primary School.
Dave Cox, who is the administrative assistant at the district’s Central Office, was appointed interim principal of Corbin High School on Monday.
He replaces John Derek Faulconer, whose resignation was effective that same day.
Faulconer, who has been the principal since July 2011, accepted a position last week to become principal of KCS Career Magnet Academy at Pellisippi State, a new magnet high school in Knox County, Tenn.
The new academy will be located on the Pellisippi State Community College campus in Strawberry Plains, east of Knoxville. The school is scheduled to open in August 2014, and will focus on career pathways, as well as college and career readiness.
Superintendent Ed McNeel told the board late in the session the district would need input from students, parents and the community on selecting the new principal.
“Your flagship in the community is your high school. I’m hoping we’ll get a principal who will take us to the top 10 percent. Our goal is this: We want the best person possible for Corbin High School,” he said.
Added Board Chair Kim Croley, “We’re not pushing or rushing into this. We want this to happen at the right time.”
Once applicants are selected, the school’s Site-Based Decision Making council will make the decision on who will be named principal.
The update on the Corbin High principal selection was one of four items reviewed at the meeting. Another involved lighting issues at Corbin Primary.
Last month, McNeel commented that several lighting controls were corrected in the building, but that problems still existed in the school’s media center.
At Thursday’s session, he noted the grounding of the building is good, and the power that’s coming in the building is correct. McNeel mentioned that LHI Lighting in Louisville has agreed to replace every light in the school’s media center with LED lamps at their expense at a cost of $800-$900 per light.
“We’re not going to install them until we make certain everything else is correct,” he said.
“The electrical systems in buildings today are very complicated because of the use of so much technology. They are also very sensitive in the electrical wavelengths in the school, and it appears those electrical waves are causing problems in the school. As for the LED lights, these lights weren’t even made five or six years ago when Corbin Primary was built,” McNeel said.
The district’s planned purchase of the Saint Camillus Academy property on Roy Kidd Avenue was also brought up. It was noted 13 items were originally requested from the district by the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE), but McNeel said the state asked for two more items, which were sent to Frankfort.
“We’re just waiting for the blessing of the KDE to give us permission to purchase the property. We are still within the timeline to purchase.,” he added.
The Corbin school board announced buying Saint Camillus from the Sisters of Divine Providence for $1 million in September. The Sisters will finance the interest-free purchase, which will be paid in $200,000 annual payments over a five-year period.
Action was taken on one of the items discussed — the 2014-15 School Calendar, which was approved unanimously.
The calendar lists 170 instructional days and 183 total days. The first day for students is Monday, Aug. 11, 2014.
Corbin High School’s graduation is scheduled for Saturday, May 16, 2015. The new calendar noted that date may change, due to school closures.
Director of Pupil Personnel and Grants Mark Daniels commented on those putting the school calendar together, “It’s the largest calendar committee we’ve had in a long time. We had a lot of input from everyone, including the students.”
Among other actions taken at the session, board members approved participation to apply for two 21st Century Community Learning Center grant applications totaling $150,000. Also getting approval was the accepting of a grant for $25,000 from the KDE, which provides training funds for the district to participate in the School Health Services project with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). And approval was given to a memorandum of agreement between the district and the University of the Cumberlands, allowing student teachers in the Corbin schools, as part of the “dual credit system” program Corbin and UC currently has. The agreement is in effect through June 30 of next year.
Additional actions taken include accepting the state School Facilities Construction Commission’s KETS Offer of Assistance for technology for fiscal year 2014. The district will receive $25,668, which will be matched with local funds.
Approval was given for the district to participate with the state Council for Better Education to support funding for the Kentucky Public School Adequacy Study. The study will cost Corbin schools 25 cents per average daily attendance student enrollment.
Approval was granted for the superintendent to increase funds during the current school year for Extended School Services, based on school need.
And board members voted to approve the purchase of instructional materials for the Montessori school from Saint Camillus Academy at a cost of $4,000 for two full sets. McNeel said the materials will be used for instructional purposes at the Corbin Preschool Center, with some materials possibly going to Corbin Primary.
Earlier in the meeting, Corbin Middle School’s seventh-grade football team was recognized by the board for recently winning the state championship.
Four district employees were honored with plaques for winning entries in the Kentucky School Public Relations Association’s recent OASIS Awards. The four were Mark Daniels, Susie Hart, Hannah Goins and Kara Cooper.
Also, a report on activities at Corbin Primary was given by the school’s principal, Travis Wilder, along with other teachers. Among the reports highlighted was the school’s reading recovery program.
Search starts for Faulconer’s successor
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