Green Forest board approves minimum wage increase

Friday, June 19, 2015

The Green Forest School board raised the district's minimum wage to $8.32 Monday night.

Superintendent Matt Summers said the wage, which was previously $8.26, will affect maintenance, custodial, cafeteria and substitute services staff.

The board also named Tim Booth the new middle school principal. Summers said Booth is principal of an elementary school in Greenbrier and has 19 years of experience in the role.

"We're very excited about what Mr. Booth brings to our school district," Summer said.

The board approved a 10-cent increase in meal prices. The new prices are: $1.10 for K-5 breakfast; $1.25 for 6-12 breakfast; $1.35 for adult breakfast; $2.10 for K-5 lunch; $1.70 for 6-12 lunch; and $1.85 for adult lunch.

The increase, Summers said, is meant to remain in compliance with the USDA Paid Lunch Equity standards. He noted that it would also help the district adjust for rising grocery prices and operating costs of the cafeteria.

Though meal prices will increase a bit, Summers said the board agreed to continue paying for reduced meals on behalf of students in need. The district, he

explained, will pay the difference after reduced-lunch students receive federal aid.

This policy is not new. Summers said the district has been providing lunch for free and reduced-lunch students for years now. Last year, he said, the district spent $14,713.60 to ensure that no student went hungry.

"This is one of the neatest things that Green Forest schools has done for many, many years," Summers said, noting that 82 percent of students at Green Forest qualify for free or reduced meals.

He asked that parents who qualify for these programs let the school know, saying it gives the board a more accurate picture of the district.

Summers announced an upcoming election to fill two school board positions. The positions are for Zone 3 and at-large positions. The election will be held Sept. 15, Summers asked that all petitions be delivered to the Carroll County Clerk's Office by July 7.

The board approved a cheerleading fundraiser, the Green Forest Tiger Booster Club bylaws, the student handbook and the parent involvement plan.

Desiree Atchley was hired as a special education teacher for 2015-16, with James Smith being employed as a bus mechanic and Eddie Phillips transferred to bus supervisor.

Tonya Arnold was re-assigned as an ESL teacher, Sharon Loniak was reassigned as a fourth-grade social studies teacher and Charisse Matzenbacher was reassigned as a fifth-grade literacy teacher.

The board's next regular meeting is scheduled for 5 p.m. Monday, July 20.

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