School board supports Trane proposal

At the November School Board meeting, board members approved to recommend the Trane proposal to update aging infrastructure in Haywood County Schools. Superintendent Joey Hassell said with the board’s approval, he will recommend the project to the County Commission Budget Committee and the full County Commission at the scheduled meetings in November and December for funding approval.

Trane’s proposed solution addresses the following business issues faced by the Haywood County School System: updating aging infrastructure, eliminating up-front capital expense, and reducing operating costs. With the completion of the program, the system’s utility bill will go down from an average of $642,480 to around $459,686, a savings of about $182,794 per year. It will also reduce the carbon footprint and bring visibility to Haywood County by proactively addressing high-energy costs and aging infrastructure without additional burden to Haywood County taxpayers.

The Trane proposal says, “We want to remind you again, that through this project, Haywood County Schools will be redirecting a portion of its existing utility costs spent toward infrastructure improvements that will generate enough energy – and non-energy-based savings to pay for the project from the existing budget.” All of these measures will upgrade the Learning Environment in Haywood County Schools. “This is truly a great infrastructure improvement program, funded by the utility savings it produces.”

In addition to the Trane program, board members also discussed during the called meeting before the regular board meeting the purchase of four buses. Then during the meeting, they approved the purchase of two 78-passenger International buses, and two 72-passenger Bluebird buses. The cost is $359,002, $10,000 under what had already been budgeted for four buses.

During his celebration of Haywood County Schools, Superintendent Hassell accepted three AEDs (automated external defibrillators) from Frank McMeen and Emily Garner, representing Friends of Heart. Friends of Heart, a fund of the West Tennessee Healthcare Foundation, is working with West Tennessee Heart and Vascular Center to expand the level of care and services offered to heart patients of West Tennessee. An AED is a portable device that checks the heart rhythm and can send an electric shock to the heart to try to restore a normal rhythm. AEDs are used to treat sudden cardiac arrest. Mr. Hassell expressed his appreciation for the AEDs, and Mr. McMeen and Ms. Garner said their goal is to be able to put one of these in every school in the county.

Assistant Principal and HCS Athletic Director Tim Seymour was also honored for his recent recognition as the winner of the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association A. F. Bridges Award as Athletic Director of the Year in District 8.

Two STEM teachers, Sharon Clark and Susan Evans, gave presentations about their classes to board members, also a part of the celebration of schools.

Ten teachers received Fall Mini-Grants Literacy/STEM Awards.

  • Leslie Phillips at Anderson will purchase Leapfrog Tag Jr Readers with her grant.
  • Multicultural Books Matter is what Sally Brown of Haywood Middle School selected as her grant fund purchase.
  • Tomcat TV Broadcast News Shows and School-Wide Video Productions, under the direction of Allyson Byrum at HHS, will purchase a lighting kit with her funds.
  • Shalondria Shaw and Patrice Boyd, both of HMS, will implement Project LIT Haywood Community Book Club with their funds.
  • Elizabeth Lovelace of Haywood Elementary will purchase STEM Bins with her mini-grant.
  • Jessie Warren, a teacher at Anderson, will use her grant funds to purchase Reading & Writing Instant Learning Centers – Set 1.
  • Haywood Elementary’s Rhonda Taylor won a grant to be used as funds to purchase a Letters and Sounds set to help the students in her Tier 3 Reading Intervention class.
  • Brittany Ferrell, a teacher at Anderson, will purchase STEM toys with her grant.
  • East Side’s Sharon Clark will give her students the opportunity to demonstrate how to make learning visible by using coding and digital devices in multiple subject areas. Dots and Dashes will be purchased and used in the STEM Lab.

CFO Larry Livingston reported that there is $213,817.04 in the Catherine Truss Colhoun Scholarship. Board members approved budget amendments presented by Livingston.

The next board meeting will be held on Thursday, December 14.