Trustees updated on school closure

By Becky Brewster

The Culberson County-Allamoore ISD Board of Trustees met in Regular Session on March 31, 2020. In keeping with the mandates from the state and federal government concerning social distancing, the Board met through video-conferencing. The focus of the meeting was an update on the policies and procedures being put in place to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. Supt. Ken Baugh noted that he is in contact with the Texas Education Agency on a daily basis, and the District and the State are still figuring things out. Baugh noted that he will provide continuous updates to the community through Facebook, email, and articles to the public. With the “shelter-in-place” mandates, the schools will be closed until further notice.

Baugh confirmed that the school closure will not impact school funding from the State; the funding will be based on an average attendance from the first four six weeks of the school year. The Board took action to ensure that all District employees will continue to be paid throughout this crisis. The Board also passed a resolution for emergency purchases.

Once the schools closed, Baugh and the teachers began making plans to continue educational instruction to the students, and laptop distribution will begin shortly. For those families that do not have internet, Baugh has been in contact with internet service providers to help, and also has a few “hot-spots” that can be used in areas where internet is not available. To transition to distance learning and to create a sense of normalcy, Baugh has encouraged teachers to reach out to their students during this transition. Baugh explained that the District is not using paper packets because of the issues involved with ensuring the papers are not contaminated.

Baugh also noted that the CCAISD is still preparing meals for those 18 years and younger, providing lunch, and breakfast for the next morning. Children no longer have to be in the car for the parents to pick up the meals. Delivery is also available in extenuating circumstances. Baugh indicated that on April 3, he and two staff members will be grilling hamburgers for lunch, noting that District employees will also be able to partake in the meal.

The Trustees passed a resolution to nominate Supt. Ken Baugh to TASB as a candidate for Superintendent of the Year. Baugh expressed his thanks for the confidence that the school board has placed in him, and noted that he loves Van Horn, his school, and his school board.

The Trustees also passed a resolution to cancel the District’s May 2, 2020 election since there were no opposed races on the ballot.

Supt. Ken Baugh reviewed the grants and payments received by the District. He noted that he is “glowing with pride” because three of the five grants were written by CCAISD employees.

In other business, the CCAISD Board members:

Passed a Resolution to transfer PILOT funds to the Van Horn Education Foundation.

Approved the sale a parcel of property recommended by the Culberson County Appraisal District.

Tabled the extension of the Superintendent’s contract pending additional information.

Received report on construction progress on the Athletic complex.

Discussed incorporating a walking track in the Athletic complex.

Discussed procedures for providing childcare.

Approved the consent agenda.

Set the next meeting for April 27, 2020.