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Grant to Fund EAST Lab at High School

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May 19, 2011 by wcobserver

Tiger Merchandise to Generate Revenue

Staff Report

WEST FORK- Money seemed the prevalent theme for the school board meeting in West Fork on May 9.  School board members sealed a deal that will bring $105,000 to West Fork to fund a high school E.A.S.T program and entered an agreement for Tiger branded merchandise that will result in revenue for the school district.

West Fork School District was awarded a $105,000 Environmental and Spatial Technologies (E.A.S.T) grant from the Arkansas Department of Education that will fund an E.A.S.T lab at West Fork High School.   The grant will provide state of the art technology and support systems needed to create a working lab at the high school, said John Crowder, West Fork High School principal.  The school district currently has an E.A.S.T program at its middle school.

E.A.S.T provides an environment for student-directed project-based learning and is overseen by a facilitator.  Karnes said Jo Lawson, who teaches business, will facilitate the E.A.S.T lab program.

School Board members approved a $25,000 pledge as an acceptance condition of the grant award.

School board members also approved entering into a licensing agreement with LRG Prep, a company that will produce Tiger branded merchandise for sale at Walmart.  Karnes said the school will receive 50 percent of revenue from the sales of Tiger branded merchandise that may include tee shirts, blankets and other gift items with the school logo or mascot images.

The agreement will not hinder the Booster Club or any other school organization form selling fundraising items with the Tiger logo, according to Karnes.

“There is no cost to us and we can terminate the agreement at any time. They are already selling these items, we might as well make money from it,” said John Karnes, Superintendent.

​In other school board news:

​Karnes reported that school district enrollment is down 22 students for the same month last year.  The elementary school has lost 32 students, while the high school gained six and the middle school added four students.

The school board approved a 36-month continuing service agreement with ASBA, a company that produces model policy manual updates to keep the school district current on legislative changes in school policies.

The board accepted resignations from Norma Summer, a fifth grade aide and Wanda Lovejoy, the head cook at the high school cafeteria.

Board members held a closed executive session at the end of the meeting and announced that they had accepted Rodney Selph’s resignation as the seventh grade boy’s basketball coach.  Karnes said T.J. Coleman would be offered a full-time position and assume the seventh grade basketball coaching responsibilities.  Karnes also said the district will begin a search to hire a District Curriculum Director, which is a newly created position.

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