During its meeting Tuesday, the Pulaski County School Board named its chairman and vice chairman for this year, held a public hearing on the 2021-22 school budget and remembered two supporters of the school system who passed away recently.
Tim Hurst, representing the Draper District on the Pulaski County School Board, was re-elected by his fellow board members to serve another term as chairman.
Robinson District representative Dr. Paige Cash was elected to serve as Vice Chairman.
Massie District representative Beckie Cox was selected to again serve as the board’s representative on the Southwest Virginia Governor’s School board.
Both Hurst and Cash were also selected to serve on the county’s Facilities Oversight Board – formerly known as Joint Services.
The board also chose to continue holding board meetings on the second Tuesday of each month at the School Board Office with meetings beginning at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted.
Meetings for 2021 are scheduled now for Feb. 9, March 9, April 13, May 11, June 8, July 13, Aug. 10, Sept. 14, Oct. 12, Nov. 9 and Dec. 14.
During the budget hearing, only one citizen spoke.
Pulaski County Education Association President Candace Castelluccio thanked the board on behalf of the association for always making its members feel “heard, appreciated and supported.”
Castelluccio, a pre-school teacher at Riverlawn Elementary, told the school board the PCEA hopes board members will continue making step pay increases and raises a priority for all school staff in upcoming budget preparation.
She asked the board to continue prioritizing the lowering of health insurance premiums and noted school employees are “very thankful for the decreases of the last few years.”
However, she said, school employees still long for “premiums closer to those of our county employee counterparts.”
Castelluccio also asked the board to consider again this year what she called a “low-cost benefit” that will boost employee morale and retention – that being the granting of an additional personal leave day for school employees with “x-number of years” in the school system.
Finally, Hurst asked that those in attendance remember during a moment of silence Bobbie Hawks and State Senator Ben Chaffin – both of whom passed away recently.
Hurst said Hawks had worked for the school system for 30 years, from 1974 to 2004, and was known for her “homemade rolls and cinnamon rolls.”
Chaffin, Hurst said, was a very good friend to Pulaski County Public Schools, and local officials never felt rushed when they visited Chaffin in Richmond when the legislature was in session unlike some others encountered during visits to the capital.
By MIKE WILLIAMS, The Patriot