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Local manufacturers were recognized by the Dade County School Board last week in honor of Manufacturer's Appreciation Week. Local manufacturers honored included, from left, are Alex Lamm, Gill Industries; Jill Schauer, Accellent; Holly Moore, IWG; Greg Smyth, Roof Curb Systems; Peter Cervelli, Industrial Development Authority and Dade County School's Interim Superintendent Cherie Swader.

By: Eddy Gifford, Publisher


The Dade County Board of Education met for its monthly work session and special called meeting Monday, April 14 at the Central Office. All board members were in attendance.

Doug Eza, financial consultant to the Dade County School System, gave the Board an overview of the fiscal year 2015 Budget.

Eza reported lots of optimistic news from Atlanta concerning funds for the coming year and also reported that revenue for this year had been better than expected. That was in part due to the tax settlement the county received on the Preserve property in Rising Fawn as well as other sources that increased this year.

In his report Eza also stated that furlough days would be decreased in the proposed budget with 12 month contract people only having five unpaid days while all others would have only three unpaid days.

The FY 2015 budget is up from FY 2014 and will have a deficit of $307,000 that will be made up from the reserve fund the system now has. With the deficit taken out the system will continue with an approximately $2 million reserve fund. That is in line with the suggested reserve the state suggests each system have.

The total budget for FY 2015 is proposed to be $17,064,873.

The first order of business in the special called meeting was recognition of local manufacturers for Manufacturer’s Appreciation Week. Interim Superintendent Cherie Swader recognized people from Accellent, IWG, Gill Industries, Roof Curb Systems and Peter Cervelli with the Industrial Development Authority.

After hearing the monthly financial reports the Board discussed items that will be on the consent agenda for the regular scheduled meeting on April 21. Those items included fuel bids, personnel records policies, concerning the storage and safe keeping of those records.

The system’s tobacco policy was discussed and suggested that other area policies be looked at since the current policy needs to be modified to meet state requirements. One of the issues being considered is a tobacco free campus.

Copier service contracts were discussed and bids will be consider at the April 21 meeting. Beeler Impressions currently provides copier service.

Bids have been received and opened for 400 Chrome Books. The contract will be rewarded at the next meeting as well. The bid for the books was $110,200.

Fleet insurance was discussed with three bids being received. State Farm has provided the coverage in the past but will no longer offer fleet service.

The Board will also award the garbage contract at the meeting.

Interim Superintendent Swader brought the Board up to date on the traffic light to be installed at the high school stating that the amount the school will be responsible for has not been determined as it is hoped the city, county and school system will share the cost of installation. The school system will be responsible for the electric bill that will be approximately $20 per month.

Change orders on current projects were discussed including bleacher repairs and electrical breakers for the new press box.

School Nutrition Director Wilma Hulgan reported a need to increase school lunch prices to stay in line with USDA requirements. She suggests an increase of 10 cents per lunch.

Board Chair Carolyn Bradford said she had a problem raising prices on school meals when in her opinion they are “not worth eating.”

In the Superintendents report Swader reported that the master calendar is not on the web site and transition days would be announced at the next meeting.

Swader also announced that State Facilities Director Tony Cook would meet with the Board at 5 p.m. on April 21 prior to the regular scheduled meeting.

After entering executive session for personnel the Board returned to approve the Superintendent recommendation for the following personnel:

Retirement of Karen deMarche as principal at Dade Middle School and Bill Emmett as math coach.

They also approved the hiring of Caroline Hurst as a paraprofessional, substitute teachers Nickie McReynolds and Mandy Jacobs and Brandy Bixler was approved to replace Bridgett Roberts in the cafeteria at Dade Elementary School.

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