The county board of education meeting featured a virtual banquet of special recognition highlights before the business meeting Monday, beginning with the swearing-in of three school board members (see photo page A13). School board officers for the coming school year were also elected, with Chris Latta repeating as president and Jackie Sivley repeating as vice president.
Next, Southeastern School assistant principal Keith Moore described a unique and heroic collaborative life-saving event, identifying the main actors as he told the story of the incident. A referee calling a basketball game at Southeastern School had a heart attack and fell to the floor during the game. If he had to have a heart attack, Moore said, he chose the best possible place to have it – right in front of a firefighter, a school nurse, and a privately-employed nurse.
All immediately leaped to his aid, along with several others present at the game who lent assistance. Someone called 911 and an ambulance was dispatched. Meanwhile, the referee’s heart and breathing stopped, rescue breathing was administered, and an automated external defibrillator (AED) was rushed to the scene from its station in the gym, and the stricken man was stabilized by the time the ambulance arrived. The ref survived, was released from the hospital recently, and was reported to be doing well at home. The photo on page A13 shows some of those involved in the life-saving rescue.
Amazingly, the dramatic emergency life-saving effort was repeated – for another referee – this time at a J.B. Pennington basketball game, on the same evening that the first successful rescue was celebrated in the afternoon school board meeting. A take-away from the two incidents in the same month: Blount County Schools have done their homework – by providing the equipment and the continuing training necessary – to be prepared for emergencies such as these.
Skylar McHan, band director for the Susan Moore Bulldog Marching Band was recognized, along with four of his students representing the band, for their success at the recent Alabama State Marching Band Competition in Florence with the designation as “Overall Class Winner” for 3A bands.
Superintendent Rodney Green was recognized for his designation as Superintendent of the Year for the 12 public schools of State Board of Education District 9.
Superintendent’s district operating recommendations
The board approved the following superintendent’s operating recommendations for the district. It approved:
• paying the Blount County Commission $29,236.50 for the school district’s share of School Resource Officers’ salaries not covered by the tobacco tax. The county and the school district split equally the total uncovered amount.
• the transportation contract with Bethany Ashe, beginning Sept. 4, 2018, and ending May 24, 2019.
• the contract with Bridgeway Services, LLC, beginning Oct. 1, 2018, and ending Sept. 30, 2019.
• the contract with Tara Best, behavioral aide at Hayden Elementary School, beginning Jan. 8, 2019, and ending May 23, 2019.
• Locust Fork High School’s contract with Trugreen for softball field lawn maintenance.
• renewing the asphalt seal coating bid with Whitaker Contracting Corporation for one year.
• renewing the gas/diesel fuel bid with McPherson Companies, Inc. for one year.
• awarding the Child Nutrition Program bid for integrated pest control management to Cook’s Pest Control.
• the substitute on the list dated Nov. 9, 2018.
• the leave of absence for Betty Hock.
• accepting the resignations of:
Michele Jennings, special education aide at Hayden Middle School, effective Dec. 21.
Deanna Jones, teacher at the Blount County Career Technical Center, effective Jan. 1, 2019.
Celina Longshore, school nurse for Blount County Schools, effective Dec. 21.
• employment of:
Sheila L. Swindle as a long-term substitute teacher for Wendy Helms, a teacher at Hayden Primary School, beginning Nov. 20.
Salena Weems as a physical education aide at Cleveland Elementary School, beginning Nov. 27.
Amanda Shiflett as a school bus aide for the Blount County Learning Center, effective Nov. 28.
• amending Susan Moore High School’s 2018-2019 supplements to remove Meredith Whitley as junior high cheer sponsor and add Whitney Brown as junior high cheer sponsor.