Oktibbeha County school board discusses alternative education

October 5, 2010 10:08:00 AM



The Oktibbeha County school board met at East Oktibbeha County High School for a business meeting where they talked for a time about alternative education in the district. 


The meeting began with public comments by a sports booster asking the board to remove some old lights, improve the softball field and fix the concession stands at East High. He said the booster club will do as much as it can, but asked the board to step in with some assistance as well. 


In business, the board approved the contract with the Starkville School District to continue handling their alternative education students. The approval was necessary because when the alternative school moved from its temporary location in Starkville''s industrial park, it changed names to Overstreet School, Superintendent James Covington said. 


The county school district contracts with Starkville schools for 14 slots in the alternative school. Each slot costs about $7,500. Covington said the district has seven or eight students in the school right now, and that number varies up to a maximum of about 13 at a time studying at this school. 


Board member Yvette Rice asked questions about the district''s ability to handle their own students requiring alternative education for discipline issues. She asked about costs associated with providing this service in-house and strategies teachers could use to modify student behavior in the traditional classroom. 


Among the items of mostly routine business the board handled was the approval to purchase two game cameras. These were approved at the Mississippi Forestry Department''s recommendation to be used to monitor logging operations on the district''s 16th section land. Covington said the cameras will be placed in areas where the board is paid by the number of trees cut. 


Covington made a report to the board on student achievement and the board''s goal of the students reaching 75 percent proficiency on state tests. He asked that the report be made in closed session so the board could discuss teacher performance. 


The board will meet again at 6 p.m. Oct. 13 in the superintendent''s office to handle some budget matters that must be approved by Oct. 15. Their next regular board meeting is at 6 p.m. Nov. 1 at East Oktibbeha County Elementary School.