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School Hires Stennis For Redistricting

Outgoing superintendent Dr. Deborah Moran (right) welcomes new superintendent Kim Chrestman at last week’s board meeting. – Photo by Jack Gurner

By Jack Gurner

WATER VALLEY – School District Trustees have agreed to begin the redistricting process in response to population changes determined by the 2010 census.

Department of Justice voting rules require that districts within the school district maintain populations that don’t exceed 10 percent deviation.

The board voted to work with the John C. Stennis Institute of Government at Mississippi State University to reapportion the districts.

During a brief discussion before the vote, Trustee Dr. Steve Edwards recommended contacting Attorney Lydia Quarles of the Institute, “to see where we are as far as our numbers.”

Among other actions at the May 16 meeting, the Board of Trustees:

• Approved the 2011/2012 consolidated federal funding application assurances.

Federal Programs Coordinator Trey Allman explained that the district had been told to expect 85 percent less for the upcoming school year. He said that the Title One budget would be reduced $74,591 and Title Two $16,430.

A portion of the funds is used to pay teachers as part of the ongoing program to keep classroom populations small.

• Approved the non-certified salary schedules for the upcoming school year.

District Business Manager Randy Goodwin told board members that the amounts had returned to FY 2010 levels before the budget cuts. “What everybody lost, they got back,” he added.

• Adopted a fund balance policy.

The business manager suggested that the policy state that the district should maintain a seven percent fund balance in the general maintenance fund the same as required by the Mississippi Department of Education.

• Learned the cost of replacing the boiler at Davidson Elementary School.

Goodwin said that a high-efficiency boiler with ten year warranty installed would cost about $45,000. He added that he would have to get another quote if the board wanted to replace the unit.

“I don’t think we have a choice if we can’t keep the one that is over there running,” commented Trustee Taylor Trusty.

• Heard the Superinten-dent’s report from Dr. Deborah Moran.

Dr. Moran began her report by welcoming new Superintendent Kim Chrestman and Band Director Keith Morgan.

She continued that the average daily attendance for the District was down a fraction over two percent, going to 91.04 percent. “This is the first time in a long time that our ADA for the month has not improved,” she said.

She reported that the total enrollment for the District dropped from 1264 to 1236 over the past month. DES started the year with 713 students and how has 709 and WVHS started with 582 and now has 540.

Dr. Moran said that the renovations by Hill Construction under a qualified school construction bond would begin at the high school as soon as the students leave for summer break.

The complete text of her report is on the Herald’s website at www.yal and the District’s website at www.wvsd

• Adjourned.

The next regular meeting of the Board will be Monday, June 6, beginning at 6:30 at the district office boardroom.

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