Macon County Board of Education members gathered on Thursday, December 8, and discussed the idea of requesting a call-to-action from county commissioners in regards to building a new elementary school that would serve grades 2-5. 

Ideally, the new school would be able to hold between 1,200 and 1,400 students to accommodate future projected growth as well as the school system’s current needs. 

Board members talked about the growth of the county as a whole and the effects it’s having on Macon County Schools.

According to Director of Macon County Schools Tony Boles, Fairlane Elementary, Lafayette Elementary School and Central Elementary are currently at maximum capacity. 

“We currently have 850 or so children enrolled in grades 2-5,” said Director Boles. “When more students enroll, we will either have to add portables - which we don’t have room for - or share classrooms. Our school system is growing, and we need to expand.”

Board member Jeff Harper stated that he received quotes from two landowners for purchasing parcels of land, to present to commissioners.

The Board of Education has had a building committee in place since early 2015, and has been discussing the need for a new school with the Macon County Facility Committee.

“We’ve laid out plans for the new school, and we’re asking for the county to finance it, so we are able to have the funds for smaller projects, like adding onto Macon County High School and Macon County High School,” said Boles. “Both of those schools are over capacity at this time and classrooms are being shared by teachers. The county has yet to indicate their support of the new school.”

While the county has funded new roofs and additional classrooms at some of the schools over the past few years, the school board itself has funded the construction of Macon County High School using its BEP funds. The high school is set to be paid off in October, which will free up some of the board’s money to complete the additions at MCJHS and MCHS. 

The need for an expansion at the Macon County Jail, which is over capacity, is also something on the minds of county commissioners. 

It seems with Macon County’s recent growth, comes a growing number of problems that the county will soon have to figure out. 

The next Macon County Schools building committee meeting is scheduled for for January 5, 2017 at 5:30 p.m.

In other business:

The board agenda and the consent agenda (minutes of previous meeting, leave requests and trip requests) were approved.

Board members presented resolutions to the Macon County High School Boys & Girls Golf teams. The girls team achieved championship status during the 16-17 season by becoming District 8A-AA Champions and Region 4A-AA Runner-Up. The boys team achieved championship status during the 16-17 season by becoming the District 8A-AA Champions, Region 4A-AA Champions and finishing fourth in the Division 1A-AA State Championship. Both teams are led by head coach Beverly Shoulders and assistant coach Rick Shoulders.

A bid submitted for a floor covering for the Macon County High School gymnasium was rejected due to lack of competitive bids. The board elected to open up the floor covering for re-bid. 

Approval was granted for a candy fundraiser for the Macon County Junior High School General Fund. 

Approval was granted for the Macon County Junior High School Booster Club to construct a practice field on Macon County Board of Education property.

Board members approved the revision of Policy 6.313, Discipline Procedures for MCHS, MCJHS & RBSHS on first reading. Once the revisions are approved on second and final reading in January, parents and students will be made aware of the revisions. 

The following policies were approved for revision on first reading: Policy 3.500 Food Service Management, Policy 4.207 English Learners, Policy 4.700 Testing Programs, Policy 5.305 Family & Medical Leave.

The following policies were approved for adoption on first reading: Policy 5.101 Differentiated Pay Plan, Policy 6.505 Students in Foster Care.

A work session was scheduled for January 5, 2017 at 6:30 p.m.

The next regular Macon County Board of Education meeting is scheduled for January 12, 2017 at 6 p.m.