Attendance waiver submitted for FIS Bulldog Virtual Academy

by Benita Fuzzell

The Fulton Independent School District has requested a Pupil Attendance Regulation Waiver application to the Kentucky Administrative Regulation, Kentucky Board of Education, submitted by FIS Superintendent Dr. DeAnna Miller, specifically requesting a waiver of language within 702 KAR 7:125 section 1(4) which states pupils shall be physically present in the school to be counted in attendance except under the following conditions: The district is requesting a waiver of this language to include in the definition of school, a public virtual school program or academy, established by a Kentucky Public School District, where instruction occurs using digital platforms, technologies with access to certified teachers, with students assigned full time to the virtual school to allow for monitoring of each student’s interaction, engagement and visual and verbal interaction.

The FIS District is making the request, according to Dr. Miller, by offering the Bulldog Virtual Academy for grades Kindergarten through fifth.

Attendance will count for those grades, with teachers teaching virtually each school day, however according to Dr. Miller and Dana Crawford, students in grades six through 12 do not appear to be able to set their own pace in such an environment, generally.

The waiver will be in effect for the 2021-22 school year, and was recommended by Dr. Miller and approved b the Board of Education members present.

Fulton Independent Board of Education members Chair Debbie Vaughn, Carol Bransford, Rea Jones and Christy Pettigrew entered into closed Executive session prior to the adjournment of the April 20 monthly meeting of the BOE, for the purpose of Superintendent Evaluation for Dr. DeAnna Miller, per Kentucky Revised Statute 61.810(1)(f).

Regarding the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund, Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) and the Comprehensive District Improvement Plan (CDIP), providing emergency aid to combat the Covid-19 pandemic, the Kentucky Department of Education received $193,186,874, 90% of which is to be distributed to local education agencies to support their crisis response efforts.

On Dec. 27, 2020, a second ESSER Fund, ESSER II, appropriation was authorized by the enactment which includes CRRSA, that supplemental appropriation providing $928,274,720 in additional emergency aid to KDE, of which 90% goes to the local education agencies.

The board approved the setting of the rate for Indirect Cost, required by the Kentucky Department of Education, with the FIS district having the option to assess the food service program and other programs and grants for indirect costs that the district incurs from operating these programs. Indirect Cost Rate calculator for FY 2021-22 determines that the following rates be used: Non Restricted Indirect Cost Rate, 500,131.00 * 90%/3,375,596.00 = 13.33% Restricted Indirect Cost Rate: 124,374.00 * 90%/ 3,751,353.00 = 2.98%.

Dr. Miller’s recommendation, and the board’s decision was to approve the Non Restricted Indirect Cost Rate of 13.33% and the Restricted Indirect Cost Rate of 2.98% for indirect costs.

The Board, under action items, approved the Financial Report and the Orders of the Treasurer, presented by Finance Officer Becky Fisette.

Submitted by Kent Green, Director of Pupil Personnel, presented to the board for review, the Fulton Independent School’s Covid-19 Reopening Plan with Enhanced Update. Revisions included students and staff are required to wear a mask on the bus and when three feet apart for social distancing , in classrooms, six feet apart in common areas, can not be achieved, unless medically waived; classrooms will place space between students by arranging seating to maximize distance between students to be three feet or greater with masks required; students will be allowed to change between instructional methods at the discretion of the school administration, unless they are required to be quarantined.

Danielle Cruse was awarded a certificate of recognition for March 2021 Employee of the Month at Carr Elementary. Kelly Cash was awarded March 2021 Employee of the Month at Fulton High School/Middle School, Matthew Moxley was named March 2021 Teacher of the Month at Carr, and Sean Seavers was named 2021 Teacher of the Month at Fulton High School/Middle School.

Liv Crawford, FIS Community Education and Re-Engagement Director, provided her report to the board members, which included her assistance in selection of a prom committee, assisting with a fundraiser for the baseball team, facilitating senior volunteers for the B3 program, coordinating a blood drive at the high school, assisting seniors with the application and essays for the Rotary Scholarship program, meeting with students involved in the Re-engagement grant program regarding grades, and providing The Current newspaper with information and photos each week.

Tracy Pulley, Coordinator for the Family Connection, FIS Family Resources Youth Services Council, FRYSC, provided her report which included communications with middle school students, distributing stuffed Bulldogs to students using the Title One family engagement funds, re-engagement lunches with middle school students, teaching Too Good For Drugs lessons to B3 students, reading to students during Read Across America Week, connecting FHS senior with DCBS for medical card and SNAP benefits, connected a family with household goods, Humana Case Management, assisted the PTO with the silent auction fundraiser, delivery of backpack feeding bags to children, created, printed and mailed Dawg Bites newsletter, provided clothing to 16 students and made 19 home visits.

The board reviewed the proposed declaration to surplus property and authorization of the sale or disposal thereof, with property that can be sold to be auctioned or sold at a later date and property which can not be sold, disposed of according to legal guidelines. The property, through contact person Asha Jenkins, Director of Technology, and approved by Superintendent Dr. DeAnna Miller, was a 100 gallon water heater at Fulton High School.

Overnight travel was approved for Dr. Miller to Louisville, for the KASS Conference May 2-4 and to Louisville May 14-16 for the Kentucky School Board Association Spring Retreat.

In the personnel report, a resignation was submitted and accepted from Stephen “Zack” Langford, Custodian and a retirement was listed for Nakia Brown, Elementary Teacher.