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Tuition Agreement Approved for Pilot Program

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July 25, 2011 by wcobserver

Lunch Prices Going Up Ten Cents

By Renee Reed

WEST FORK – Beginning this fall, West Fork High School will participate in a new Medical Professions Course pilot program. During the July school board meeting, John Karnes, superintendent, sought and received board approval for a tuition agreement with Northwest Technical Institute’s Secondary Career Center for the 2011-2012 school year.
NTI is a vocational school based in Springdale which offers extensive courses in business fields to area students who wish to pursue career courses while attending high school. West Fork students will have the opportunity to enroll in 4 courses taught at the Farmington satellite campus. The courses consist of Introduction to Medical Professions, Introduction to Medical Procedures: Beginning and Advanced, Human Anatomy and Physiology, and Medical Terminology.
“After completion of these courses, students may choose to enroll in a five week summer course offered by Northwest Arkansas Community College which will certify them as Nursing Assistants,” said Karnes.

John Crowder, high school principal, reported there are currently have around seven students involved in this program.
“We have been fast tracked by NTI and the state in allowing us to offer these courses to our students as a pilot program. It normally takes a year to complete the paper work and fill out all the applications. It’s for this reason we will be waiting another year to offer the Criminal Justice courses,” said Crowder implyingww that additional course programs may be added in future years.

Karnes reported that the Arkansas Department of Career Education will be reimbursing the school system $1,083.33 for each student in the program, but the students will be responsible for the $351.00 cost of the summer program for CNA certification. The students will be bused to Farmington for half of their normal school day.

For students still exploring an interest in the medical field, a medical professions program by distance on-line learning will be offered as a single one period course. Crowder reported that are quite a few interested in this option.

During Monday night’s meeting, school board members increased the price of its school lunches 10 cents. The increase will bring the school district closer to being in compliance with USDA requirements that stipulate what schools must charge for full paid lunches based on a formula that is tied to federal monies the school receives for free lunches.
West Fork’s fully paid lunches are currently 46 cents below what is required to be in compliance, but the school district is only required to increase lunch prices 10 cents in a single year.

“This will show evidence to the USDA that our district is making progress towards meeting their requirements,” said Karnes.

Breakfast, milk and adult lunch prices will remain the same. Karnes reported that the adult lunch price of three dollars is above the national average and is in compliance with USDA guidelines.

In other school board news:

The school board approved the appointment of Dena McKnight as the new Parent Involvement Facilitator for the middle school. They also approved the hiring of Sandi Cox as middle school math teacher for 2011-2012.

A new carpet replacement bid of $9,865 for the middle school and elementary libraries was approved and awarded to M&M Tile in Springdale They also approved the purchase for the high school and middle school of 50 new Dell computers and LCD monitors from Insight Systems Exchange.

In a work session prior to the regular meeting, school board officials and Karnes met with representatives of Hight Jackson and Associates to discuss the pros and cons of possibly using a Construction Management Company for the elementary cafeteria project. Ron Shelby and Mark Haguewood answered questions and offered advice on what to look for in a general contractor and a construction manager. The board agreed that they will do more research before they decide which management option will work best for the cafeteria project.

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