By Jeff Noble / staff writer
Tuition will be raised next school year for those parents who live out-of-district, and send their children to the Corbin Independent Schools.
The decision came Thursday night during the Corbin Board of Education’s regular meeting, held at the Corbin Preschool Center on Master Street.
Starting with the 2014-15 school year, the tuition for out-of-district students will go up to $2,500. That’s an increase from this year’s tuition of $1,600.
Superintendent Ed McNeel said the hike in tuition is for any district that doesn’t have a non-resident student agreement with the Corbin schools. It applies to the Knox County and Laurel County school districts.
News of the tuition hike was made after board members came out of executive session, where the issue was discussed and decided. It was approved when they returned to the regular meeting.
The board also set the tax rate for real estate property and personal property for 2013-14 at the compensating rate of 56.2 cents per $100 in Whitley and Knox counties. That’s an increase from last year’s rate of 54.1 cents per $100.
Before the regular meeting, a public meeting to hear comments on the school tax rates was held at 6:45 p.m. There were no comments about the rates, and the public hearing was adjourned at 7 p.m.
In addition, approval was given to set the 2013-14 tax rates on motor vehicles and watercraft at 69.3 cents per $100. The rate remains the same as last year, and in previous years.
“It’s not changed in all the 21 years I’ve been here,” McNeel noted.
He also announced that Corbin Independent will again apply for the federal grant from the “Race To The Top” program. Corbin will be the fiscal agent for the project, which will be a consortium of Corbin, Whitley County, Knox County and other school districts in the region. The consortium will apply for the grant application in September.
Last year, the Southeastern Kentucky “Race To The Top” Consortium, made up of Corbin Independent, Whitley County, Williamsburg Independent and McCreary County school districts, applied for the federal grant.
In December, the U. S. Department of Education, which administers the grants, told the Southeastern Kentucky Consortium they didn’t get it. Instead, the multi-million dollar grant went to the Green River Educational Cooperative, a consortium of 22 school districts in southern and central Kentucky.
Had the Corbin-SEKY group gotten the grant, the four school districts would have received $30 million a year for four years — a total of $120 million over the four-year period.
Board members approved to accept the 2013 Qualified Zone Academy Bond, or QZAB, bond offer of $1.3 million. The money will be used for renovations to the Corbin Area Technology Center. In June, they applied for the QZAB bond, as well as approve Hillard Lyons as the financial agent for the bonds.
To go along with accepting the QZAB bond, approval was given to advertise for letters of intent from architectural firms and construction manager firms for the tech center renovations.
Also approved was accepting a two-year grant of $90,000 from the Steele-Reese Foundation. The foundation is a charitable trust that supports education, human social services, health, preservation, and arts and humanities in southeastern and eastern Kentucky, as well as Idaho and Montana. In addition, the board reviewed and approved the 2012-13 Annual Financial Report, and approved the Music Alumni Association as a booster group for the Corbin Independent Schools.
An update on the required evaluation of the superintendent, according to the state Department of Education guidelines was discussed. Board members agreed to hold a special meeting next month to further address the situation.
The next regular meeting will be Thursday, Sept. 12 at 7 p.m., at Corbin Elementary School.