VIDEO: DeKalb BOE accepts Monroe retirement, approves early grads
November 30, 2017
Southern Torch (3845 articles)

VIDEO: DeKalb BOE accepts Monroe retirement, approves early grads

PHOTO: Board Member Mark Richards discusses the situation at the pickup line at Geraldine School. (Tyler Pruett | Southern Torch)

By Tyler Pruett, Managing Editor

RAINSVILLE, Ala. – (Video at the Bottom) To begin the workshop, Carol Hiett, who is in charge of the maintenance the central office gave an update on the “SchoolDude,” software that the maintenance department had adopted.

Hiett related that the program had the workers using iPads and is, “totally computerized.”

“It was a big learning curve for our guys,” said Hiett. “Schools have accepted it very well and it’s a lot easier on us.”

She said that since the introduction of the new program, 686 work orders have been completed, and the SchoolDude makes it easy because the principals can track the maintenance tasks as they are completed. Faculty can fill out the maintenance request electronically through the central office and watch the parts be ordered.

Hiett also said the staff have enjoyed the improvement, and, “our maintenance staff are able to look at their devices and see their jobs.”

“I think it’s been a good thing for our district as a whole,” said Superintendent Dr. Jason Barnett. “Everyone seems to have really embraced it and really worked with it.”

Next to address the board, Brandon Payne, of LEAN Frog addressed the board on the strategic planning services that his company offers. LEAN Frog is headquartered in Huntsville and was founded in 2009.

Payne’s company offers strategic planning (and communication of the plan), performance improvement, organization optimization, human resources counseling, detailed efficiency reviews, technology integration, help with state and federal monitoring, school improvement planning, and several other services.

If the board enters into an agreement with LEAN Frog, the company will help the board development their strategic plan by conducting survey’s to gather feedback from the public, help prioritize funding, meet AdvanceED requirements, and communicate the plan to the public. The development of the plan will ideally take 6 months.

Barnett said the system is working towards accreditation and hopes to do a review in January and make a decision to to use LEAN Frog or, “another similar model.”

Next, Jay Grubbs of Ra-Lin Construction presented for the board on services they offer. Ra-Lin is a Carrolton, Georgia based construction firm, that specializes in building school facilities. The company has two offices; one Oxford, Alabama and the other in Carrolton. Grubbs was joined by T.J. Maloney, who does the marketing for the company.

Grubbs related that the company has completed 86 educational facility projects in the last 10 years. Currently, the company has 41 active campus projects; meaning that the projects are being completed with faculty and students on campus during the work. Locally, Ra-Lin is managing projects in Clay, Cleburne, and Jackson Counties.

Grubbs said that Ra-lin stands apart from other firms and architects, and others, “are coming overbid the majority of the time.” Grubbs related that his company helps school systems stay close to the original construction cost bids by understand the construction process and understanding construction material prices.

Before ending the workshop, Board Member Mark Richards brought to the board’s attention a problem at Geraldine Elementary School. Parents begin lining up in the pickup line at 1:15 pm to pick up their students on County Road 52, and it’s beginning to be a problem because the cars block the road.

“I’ve met with the (Geraldine) mayor, council, and Ben Luther the County Engineer before Thanksgiving to try and come up with a remedy to try and get those folks off the road. We’ve got some property just before you turn in the road to go to the elementary, quite a bit I think, they’ve figured up 500 cars could fit there,” explained Richards.

“I’ve asked Ben, and I’ll have to talk to the county commission too, and see if they might help with the construction part of it if we would pay for the materials. But we are going to have to do something; it’s dangerous, they go over a little creek, a bridge, and it’s becoming a problem. Just wanted to let ya’ll know we are working on that and we are going to get it handled,” said Richards.

Regular Meeting:

Isabel Corona of Geraldine High School is stands to be recognized as an early graduate. (Tyler Pruett | Southern Torch)

After the prayer, pledge of allegiance, and approving the minutes of the previous meeting, the board approved the early graduates for the school system.

“They have worked dilligently through their academic plan, and shown themselves worthy to complete their high school academic track early. And go on to college, a career, or whatever they have planned. They had to present a packet, showing they have a plan for what they want to do,” said Barnett.


Approved Early Graduates:

  • Isaiah Ford – Collinsville High School
  • Claudia Medina – Collinsville High School
  • Kelly Garrett – Sylvania High School
  • Jorden Garcia – Sylvania High School
  • Hannah Byrum – Sylvania High School
  • Vida Ross – Sylvania High School
  • Christian Townson – Sylvania High School
  • Meghan Graham – Sylvania High School
  • Courtney Ray – Sylvania High School
  • Fermin Callejas – Geraldine High School
  • Estefania Ruiz – Geraldine High School
  • Dacia Hancock – Geraldine High School
  • Lexi Camper – Geraldine High School
  • Isabel Corona – Geraldine High School
  • Nancy Balcazar – Geraldine High School
  • Rilee Farmer – Plainview High School
  • Cruz Carrasco – Plainview High School
  • Kayla Killian – Plainview High School
  • Jose Hernandez – Crossville High School
  • Maria Pedro – Crossville High School
  • William Watson – Crossville High School
  • Dakota May – Crossville High School

The board then gave special recognition to Emory Mann for 45 years of service to the Board of Education. Mann is tied with Judy Ayers with most years of service to the board. The board approved his retirement later in the meeting

Superintendent Barnett and board members went into executive session for about 10 minutes to discuss a disciplinary matter. After the session the, board recommended a “Long-term removal” from a sports team.

The board also approved a bid for new radio systems in the county’s school buses. The bid accepted was for $99,356.66 from Falcon Community Services for the upgrade. The contract will be for 144 radios. The new equipment will allow for communication with the Emergency Management Agency (EMA) and better communication.


  • Emory Mann – Computer Software/Hardware Technician, Itinerant System, Retirement
  • Mirella Hodges Munoz – Spanish Teacher, Henagar Jr. High/Ider High School, Retirement
  • Kathy Robertson – High School Custodian (12 months) – Valley Head High School, Retirement
  • Bill Monroe – High School Prinicipal (12 Months), Valley Head High School, Retirement
  • Angie Broyles – Speech Language Pathologist, Itinerant Plainview High School
  • Maria Quintana – Translator/Transliterator, Itinerant System, Resignation
  • Andrea Hastings – Registered Nurse, Moon Lake Elementary
  • Betsy Celiz – Elementary Teacher, Collinsville High School, Resignation
  • Lee Orr – Mathematics Teacher, Collinsville High School, Resignation
  • Brittany DuBose – Sign Language Interpreter/Transliterator – Itinerant System

Leave of Absence:

  • Lisa Murdock – Registered Nurse, Geraldine High School
  • Danny Wilson – Bus Driver, Fyffe High School
  • Rebecca Dean – Pre-K Auxillary Teacher, Plainview High School
  • Nicole Green – Pre-K Auxillary Teacher, Fyffe High School
  • Heather Andrews – Pre-K Auxillary Teacher, Ider High School
  • Ray Evans – Maintenance Worker, Facilities
  • Jana Foshee – Speech Language Patholigist, Geraldine


  • Certified:
    • Taylor Chastain – General Science Teacher, Collisnville High School
    • Laura Stephenson – Elementary Teacher, Geraldine High School
  • Support:
    • David King – Bus Driver, Sylvania High School
    • Matt Hosch – Computer Hardware/Software Technician, Facilities
    • Tracy Hulgan – 21st Century Bus Driver, Collinsville High School
    • Denise Downer – Itinerant Special Education Aide/Paraprofessional
    • Andrew Hairrell – Tech Route Bus Driver, Sylvania High School
    • Brenna Williams – Bus Driver, Collinsville High School
    • Ronnie Dobbins – Bus Driver, Collinsville High School 
  • Coaching Supplement:
    • Daniel Williams – Head Girls Soccer Coach, Collinsville High School
  • Volunteer Coaches:
    • Chad Murdock – Softball, Sylvania High School
    • Bear Jones – Basketball, Collinsville HIgh School


  • Stan Reeves – Bus Driver at Ruhama Jr. High to Bus Driver at Plainview High School

Principal Contracts:

  • Jordan Phillips – 3 year Contract, Principal, Ruhama Jr. High School
  • Phil Bryan – 3 year Contract, Principal, Crossville Elementary School


  • Heather Bethune – Homebound
  • Amanda Woodall – Homebound
  • Beverly Ledbetter – Homebound
  • Lakala Willingham – Homebound
  • Dr. Amanda Glover – Independent Educational Evaluation
  • The Learning Tree – Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Huntsville Hospital Auditory – Verbal Therapist – Therapy Services
  • Penny Benton – McKinney-Vento Advocate
  • Kimberly Ford – Tutor
  • Kimberly Ford – ESL Tutor
  • Robert Worthey – 21st Century Collinsville music Teacher
  • Steve Green – Title I After School Program Henagar Teacher
  • Carla Hamilton – Title I After School Program Henagar Teacher
  • Sherri Bryant – Title I After School Program Henagar Teacher
  • Tabatha Greenwood – Title I After School Program Henagar Teacher
  • Jennifer Ridgeway – Title I After School Program Henagar Teacher
  • Amber Traylor – Title I After School Program Henagar Teacher
  • Margaret Brown – Central Office, Clerical
  • Harold Guildford III – Maintanence Worker
  • Jayce Erwin – Computer Hardware/ Software Technician

Superintendent’s Recommendations, Comments, and Reports

  • The Board of Education decided to award the Energy, Utility, and Infrastructure Efficiency Program to Schneider Electric. The board had been considering several companies, including Every Watt Matters, to partner with to work on saving energy in buildings within the system, and after much consideration and vetting, Schneider won the contract.
  • Barnett said that the purchasing cards are in, and will be loaded with money that teachers did not use for their classrooms last year. The board should be issuing them out Tuesday.
  • Superintendent Barnett also asked the board to look over a Technology Coordinator Job Description, which will Lay on the Table for 30 days.
  • Barnett also thanked ESPO Coordinator Mary Jo Chandler for the opportunity for the board members to work with the service employees for a day to experience their jobs.

Board Members Comments:

  • Sharp commended several of the schools for being positive on of their financial accounts.

The board takes a break for the month of December in lieu of the Christmas Holiday. The next meeting will be held on Thursday, January 25, 2018.

Watch the Full Video: 

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