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FCBOE receives recognition from elementary students

By Macy Reeves for the FCT


With this month being Alabama’s 23rd Annual School Board Member Recognition Month, the Franklin County Board of Education members were in for a treat at their meeting Jan. 26. Student ambassadors from Tharptown Elementary filled the front two rows, and each took turns talking about what they appreciate about their board members and their school. The ambassadors gave out gift bags, thank you letters and coffee mugs with hot chocolate to each of the board members; while members distributed gifts, the president of the ambassador group presented a card signed by all students from Tharptown Elementary.

The board approved a Watchguard Firebox, which will improve Internet at the Franklin County Board office. A grant was received for the $58,330.16 the Firebox will cost.

Amy Gunderman, director of the child nutrition program, explained a necessary amendment to the Wellness Policy. This policy sets certain guidelines that schools must follow in order to maintain the federal funds that allow students to eat at no cost to them. The new guidelines require schools under the Federal Wellness policy to cut back on sodium in the school lunchrooms, as well as list any nutritional program. Gunderman said the school nutrition association is in discussion with the USDA about how strict their requirements are; however, in most schools, student consumption is near 100 percent. This item was approved.

The board also went over a new drug-testing proposal. The schools previously tested for drugs under a grant that allowed schools to test student athletes and drivers randomly. However, the three-year grant ran out. The new proposal will require all students in those schools to participate in random drug testing, which was approved by the board.

The school board also discussed school security. A new plan will involve each school principal looking at security issues or concerns and sending them to the board.

The next board meeting will be Feb. 23, beginning at 5:15 p.m.