ANSC elects new state officers

ANSC officers pictured L-R are Sharon Calhoun, Recording Secretary; Alphonzo Morton, III, 1st Vice President; Dr. Roberta Watts, President and Matilda Hamilton, Recording Secretary. Not shown are Rosa Jernigan, 2nd Vice President and John Zippert, Treasurer.

Alabama New South Coalition elected its state officers at the Spring Membership Convention held recently in Montgomery, AL.
Dr. Roberta Watts, Etowah County was selected as statewide president; Alphonzo Morton, III, Greene County, first vice-president; Rosa Jernigan, Bullock County, 2nd Vice President; Sharon Calhoun, Montgomery County, recording secretary; Matilda Hamilton, Tallapoosa County, corresponding secretary and John Zippert, Greene County, treasurer.
Approximately 100 members from across the state participated in the ANSC Membership Convention held at the Maggie Street Dream Center in Montgomery. The program focused on panel presentations addressing concerns on Impacting our Right to Vote; Redistricting; PAC to PAC Transfers, Voter ID, Budget Impact, Education, Health, Justice and other related topics.
The luncheon guest speaker was the Honorable Mark Kennedy, former Alabama Supreme Court Justice and currently Chairperson of the Alabama Democratic Party.
Kennedy stated that we are at a crossroads in Alabama. “We are shifting paradigms from what does not work to what will work.”

Five teachers honored by their peers as making a difference in their schools

Special presentations are made to teachers who make a difference in their schools at Monday night’s Board of Education meeting. Pictured L-R are Board President Leo Branch, Shante Morton, Paramount Jr. High; Mattie Strode, Carver Middle School; Charlese Smith, Eutaw Primary, LaShaun Henley, Eutaw Primary and Alphonzo Morton, III, Greene County High School. Each of the honorees will receive a dining out experience at the restaurant of their choice.

Five teachers were honored at the regular meeting of the Greene County Board of Education. Each month, the teachers in each school vote on the teacher they feel has made a difference in their school. The teachers are given money with which to eat out for being selected.
In her financial report, CFO Evelyn James reported that the board received revenue of $1.396785 and had claims in the amount of $1,115,226.27 for the month of February, 2011.
She also reported that the board received $41,803 in revenue from the 2% tax.
Another portion of her report was a recommendation that the system approve purchasing office supplies from Office Depot.James explained that the board was part of a joint purchasing agreemeent with Lee Russell company.
Board member Lester Brown questioned her as to why the system did not purchase supplies from local business, explaining that he felt since a portion of the sales taxes on local purchases came to the Board of Education, it made sense to purchase locally.
James advised him that any purchase over $7,500 according to Alabama law had to be bid, but that on small purchases they did buy from local businesses.
Board Attorney Hank Sanders explained to Brown that if local businesses wanted to bid on items, they could and if they came within 3% of the low bid, the board could purchase from them.
Brown said his point was that if the board did not establish a local tax base, they would not receive local money. He went on record as supporting spending as much money as possible locally.
Superintendent Isaac Atkins, in her report, told the board that on March 8, 12 students from Greene County High School attended a 21st Century Youth Leadership Conference sponsored by Alabama Power. During this conference, young people from all over Alabama heard presentations from major business leaders as to what they were looking for in employees.
The students from Carver and Paramount Jr. High who participated in a Robotics competition against other area teams in an event held at Wallace Community College in Selma on March 19th won several prizes. She said that at the next School Board meeting, the students would be present and display the robots they had designed and built.
Another recent event was a training workshop held for teachers, principals and Central Office staff concerning teaching youth how to manage money. Subjects ranging from how to balance a check book, use credit and credit cards, the advantages of both home ownership and rental homes, financial goals and purchasing a car were included in this workshop.
On March 10th, principals, assistant principals and office staff were part of a school workshop about prventing bullying in school. “This is very important,” said Atkins, “and we intend to continue with these workshops.
On March 25, a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) workshop for female students is scheduled to be held at Stillman College.
Atkins also advised the board that the ARM testing for grades 3-9 had been held this week and that the SAT tests for grades K-8 wil be given next week.
She ended her report by advising the board that the system was facing 3% proration in state funds. Due to this, the system will lose $222,000 in the 2011 budget.
Following a lengthy executive session. Board member Lester Brown questioned Attorney Sanders as to where the board stood legally concerning collection of monies from Greenetrack which have not been received since electronic bingo had ben shut down.
Sanders advised him that the board did have a contract with Greenetrack and he would talkwith CEO Luther Winn about the matter.
Brown asked for clarification on the new bingo rules drawn up by Sheriff Jonathan Benison. “We’re not named at all in his rules,” said Brown, adding that Benison had promised to provide a deputy at the school. “At a meeting the other night he asked us to pay for that.” Chairman Branch agreed that the board did need to have a meeting with the sheriff and get some clarification on several issues.
Among the personnel items, the board approved the termination of Marcus Steele and Marilyn Finch as bus drivers effective April 8, 2011.