Magnolia buses

Magnolia School District buses cover 2,600 miles a day.

The Magnolia School Board held its regular meeting Monday evening.

Highlights from the meeting include:

-- Transportation Director Chris Hurley talked to the board about a five-year lease-purchase agreement for 15 buses. The current fleet includes two 1996 buses that are still on routes every day.

Hurley said several of the mid-2000s buses have “gone kaput.” He reminded the board that by buying only two new buses every year, there’s always 17-year-old buses on the road, if everything keeps working.

The board discussed shopping for the best financing options.

Hurley suggested that the district consider purchasing gasoline buses rather than diesel.

He also mentioned to the board that they will be doing a study this spring about the possibility of consolidating some of the bus routes. He said the buses currently drive 2,600 miles each day on routes.

-Superintendent John Ward told the board the district is waiting on an HVAC system to be installed at the 9th Grade Academy so the building can be climatized. Then, flooring and furniture can begin to be installed. He said he expected the building to be turned over to the school in February.

The Performing Arts Center slab has been poured and structural steel in being installed.

-- Ward recognized Keri Hamilton “for the tremendous job she does in the classroom and the hard work she put in to get this national board certification. It’s quite an ordeal and we wanted to recognize her accomplishments.” Hamilton, Magnolia High School English Department teacher and chairperson, became one of 3,831 new National Board Certified Teachers (NBCTs). The designation comes from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS).

Hamilton then explained to the board the process she had to go through to get this certification. “It was, by far, the best and most intense professional development I’ve ever completed,” she said.

-- Ward recognized board members in acknowledgement of School Board Recognition Month.

-- Board approved the renewal of the errors and omissions insurance with First Arkansas Insurance at a premium of $10,218.

-- Ward said education humorist and former principal Gerry Brooks will be speaking at Panther Arena for the service co-op on August 12.

-- The next meeting will be February 10.

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