Caddo Hills school board extends superintendent’s contract

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    The state mandated Facilities Master Plan update for the district was adopted during Monday night’s Caddo Hills School District board meeting. The Superintendent also received a one year extension on his employment contract following a board review.
    Superintendent of Schools Deric Owens explained to the board that state law requires that each school district maintain a long-range Facilities Master Plan to address upcoming district needs. Under the current plan, previously identified future needs have included such projects as air conditioning of the school’s Physical Education Building (P.E. Building) to help make it a more usable multi-purpose facility.
    The air conditioning project will be complete by the end of the school year, according to Owens. The district has plans to develop the PE gymnasium into more of a multi-purpose facility, so work will continue in that direction. The district plans to make needed renovations to allow large meetings, performances and assemblies to make additional usage possible.
    One advantage of the mandated annual facilities review is that the board can reassess the district’s changing needs from year to year, according to Owens. Currently, the plan has renovations recommended for 12 buildings, as well as specific upgrades in some individual rooms.
    Following discussion Monday night, the board voted to add several items to the long-range plan to include roof maintenance on the transportation and maintenance buildings and re-roofing of the remainder of the high school building.
    Cafeteria renovations, which will include removal of the undersized stage area to allow more seating for food service, will become a priority under the updated plan. Development of increased parking space was moved to the front of the line in the master plan so better use of the updated P.E. Building can be made.
    Lighting in the baseball/softball batting cages was installed by district personnel over the Christmas break, Owens noted to the board. He said the work was completed by using some old lighting fixtures remaining after the LED lighting project was complete and purchase of 32 bulbs at $4 each.
    The project took advantage of available materials and school staff to improve practice facilities for students at almost no cost, Owens said.
    The board also voted, after an executive session, to extend the superintendent’s contract for an additional year and set it to expire June 30, 2018. The executive session allows board members time to fill out a lengthy report required by the Arkansas Department of Education.
    Traditionally, the district superintendent’s contract is considered and a decision on contract extension is made during January. The superintendent will then begin making recommendations on faculty and staff contract renewals in the upcoming months.
    One student transfer from Centerpoint School District was accepted on recommendation of the Superintendent.
    A resolution was read recognizing school board members from across the state. Certificates were provided from the Arkansas State Board of Education and the governor in recognition of Arkansas School Board Member Recognition Month.