Cherokee BOE accepts multiple resignations

The Cherokee Board of Education met at 7 p.m., Monday, April 5, for their monthly meeting.

The meeting was called to order with Kory Littlefield, Desiree Gibson, Amber Wilhite, Shane Parker and Kurtis Goodwin present.

The minutes from the March 8 and 25 meetings, general fund encumbrances, purchase orders and warrants, building fund encumbrances, purchase orders and warrants, child nutrition fund encumbrances, purchase orders and warrants, treasurer’s report, activity fund report and resignations were approved first.

The resignations are as follows:

• Cathy Graham, elementary teacher.

• Patty Means, elementary teacher.

• Shelly Burleson, elementary teacher.

• Malarie Cline, elementary teacher.

• Cathy Parks, reading intervention and fifth grade ELA teacher.

• Ruth Richmond, elementary principal.

• Kassie Hair, administrative assistant at the elementary.

Littlefield, Gibson, Wilhite and Goodwin voted in favor with Parker voting no of the resignations.

Richmond gave her principal’s report:

• Testing season is starting and will continue through the 27th.

• FFA petting zoo will be at the elementary on April 6.

• Fifth grade is competing in track meets.

• Jessie Mary Reinhart track meet will be May 4.

• Touch-A-Community will be May 6.

Hickman gave his report:

• Testing is going on in the junior high and high school.

• Mrs. Jordan has the seniors busy on scholarships.

• Eighth and ninth grade will be touring NW Technology Center.

• Juniors will be taking the ACT on April 13 in Cherokee.

• FCCLA state convention was recently held with two winning state championships, two runner-ups and one third place.

• Track season is underway.

• FFA is staying busying following show season. They will attend state convention this month.

• District baseball and softball April 22-24.

• FCCLA award is coming up.

• Students busy with activities

• State speech coming up.

• April 17 is prom.

The board discussed the overreaching, illegal and unconstitutional nature of the action by the State Board of Education during their March 25 meeting.

During that meeting the state board of education settled a lawsuit and it is believed that the action was unconstitutional due to the legislators being in charge of allocating money. The lawsuit was with Oklahoma Public Charter School Association.

If the lawsuit is upheld, it would take money from the building fund of every public school and send it to charter schools. The amounts are unknown.

After some more discussion, the board took no action on the resolution and authorizing the superintendent and district’s legal counsel to pursue appropriate actions including litigation against the State Board of Education or any other appropriate entities, organizations or persons regarding the state board of education’s actions of March 25.

Next, the board approved the HB 1864 method where the school will document 1080 hours of classroom time instead of the traditional method of 180 days for the 2021-2022 school year.

At 7:23 p.m., the board convened into executive session to discuss the employment status of certified and/or support personnel for the upcoming school year.

They returned to open session at 9:08 p.m. and read the statement of minutes of the executive session.

Superintendent Bryce Schanbacher recommended that everybody as follows be re-employed:

• Certified: Michelle Baldwin, Lyndee Cudmore, Gayla Failes, Niki Gates, Heather Gottsch, Matthew Guffy, Rita Hall, Janet Hester, Greg Jantzen, Anita Jordan, Kadie Lancaster, Debra Lohrding, Audrey Lowe, Jaime Lundry, Travis Lyon, Mallory Means, Alicia Mitchell, Jason Paris, Keela Patterson, Kirsten Pruett, Lane Pruett, Charmaine Rathgeber, Joy Reed, Cindy Schanbacher, Stephanie Shepard, Christy Snider, Amanda Stinnett, Amanda Tucker, Charity Vanmeter, George Weve and Stephanie Weve.

• Support staff: Katie Alvidrez, Bucky Bell, Billie Goss, Christina Herrera, Sharon Inman, Billy Irvin, Amy Leslie, David Newlin, Judy Porter, Kendra Puffinbarger, Kathleen Roglin, Amantha Sanborn, Shanely Turner and Tyler Ward.

The board approved the re-employment of those personnel.

Schanbacher gave his report:

• An update was given on legislation going on at the state capitol.

• The school is busy with activities and state testing.

• The school is waiting on the amount of stimulus money coming in to see what they can do with it.   

Next, a resolution was approved for Prosperity Bank designating Schanbacher as a coordinator and removing Donna Anderson.

The final item of business was approving a contract for Barlow Educational Management Services for the 2021-2022 school year in the amount of $5,910. Barlow assists the district with federal programs.

After hearing no new business, the meeting adjourned at 9:16 p.m.

March 25

The board met for a special meeting at 6 p.m., March 25.

The meeting was called to order with Littlefield, Wilhite, Goodwin and Gibson present.

Pat Carroll of Chas W. Carroll, PA presented the 2019-2020 financial audit to the board via Zoom.

Following the presentation, the board approved the financial audit.

The next item on the agenda was discussion and vote to set the time, date and place for a hearing upon receipt of superintendent’s recommendations for reduction in force and non-reemployment of the positions and the names holding the positions listed below:

• Hailey Cudmore, full time district librarian.

• Amy Eckhardt, fifth grade math, middle school math remediation and reading intervention.

• Cathy Parks, fifth grade language arts/reading intervention.

• Byron Conner, district band instructor.

• Kelsey Chace, second grade teacher.

• Debra Lohrding, three-year-old program.

The hearing was set for 7 p.m., April 19.

The next item was a motion to direct Superintendent Schanbacher to notify the affected employees of the superintendent’s recommendation, the time, date and place of the hearing and their right to a hearing. The motion was approved.

The meeting then adjourned at 6:34 p.m.

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