COVID-19 update given to School Board.

LAWRENCEVILLE – Russell Middle School was awarded a GEAR UP Grant for its current 7th grade class. Tracey Rogers, Assistant Division Superintendent, Brunswick County Public Schools, provided information about the grant to members of the Brunswick County School Board. GEAR UP stands for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs.

Rogers said GEAR Up Virginia focuses on increasing academic performance and preparation for postsecondary education; increasing the rate of high school graduation and enrollment in postsecondary education and increasing GEAR Up Virginia students’ and their families knowledge of postsecondary education options, preparation, and financing.

As a result of this grant: students will have access to GUV Student Scholarships, funding for professional development, tutoring and mentoring for students, and opportunities for student summer camps. GEAR Up positions: Central Office Liaison – Mrs. Rogers, School Team Leader – Principal, Site Coordinator (stipend position), Data Coordinator (stipend position), Family Liaison (stipend position) and in year 2, the division will get a full-time college advisor at the high school.

In other matters, information was provided on the number of positive COVID-19 cases, number of employees and the number of students listed by school: Meherrin-Powellton Elementary School - 1, 7; Red Oak-Sturgeon Elementary School -1, 10; Totaro Elementary School - 0, 13; Russell Middle School – 0, 21; Brunswick High School – 0, 21; CS/Tran/Maintenance – 2, N/A.

Virginia School Screening Testing for Assurance (ViSSTA) program – Vendor is Aegis Sciences Corporation (TestingWorks), information shared through Division Faculty Webinar (Nov. 2), registration information distributed to parents and faculty via a letter, testing window opens up the week of Nov. 15, 2021 (BHS/RMS); week of Nov. 29, 2021 (all school), positive testing notifications will be made via email and text messages directly from TestingWorks, positive individuals will be required to isolate in accordance with CDC and VDH guidelines

October was National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month and Mrs. Grayson from Russell Middle School shared the school’s Bullying Prevention Plan.

Krystle Pearson, Director of Technology, gave an update on technology.

Dr. Kristy Somerville Midgette, Division Superintendent, provided information about an auction of surplus equipment scheduled for Friday, Dec. 10, 2021 at 10 a.m. at the Brunswick County Public Schools Bus Garage, 224 School Days Drive, Lawrenceville. Daniel Auction Service is handling the sale.

Dr. Midgette gave the FY22 Finance Report for October. BCPS has expended $6,329,265.40 from the categorical budget and received a total of $3,081,348.37 in revenues. The FY22 Budget was created on an ADM (Average Daily Membership) of 1,351. The current ADM is 1,376.

Brunswick County Public Schools Child Nutrition Department was awarded a Pandemic EBT Local Level Administration Cost Sub Grant in the amount of $3,063.00. Dr. Midgette is requesting that these funds be applied to the Child Nutrition Department Fund – 251 for the 2021-2022 school year.

Dr. Midgette said Brunswick County Public Schools is requesting that the Brunswick County Board of Supervisors to approve an additional appropriation for the following: FY22 – Fund 205: School Improvement Continuation Grant (520) - $74,109.21 and GEAR UP Virginia (GUV) Grant (385) - $27,000.

Dr. Midgette presented a 2021-2022 Calendar Change.

The School Board will hold an organizational meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2022 at 6 p.m.

During the citizen comment period Joanna Pritchett asked the School Board to consider increasing the pay for substitutes. She said that a substitute might be hired for a first grade and get students from other grades. Pritchett said that if a substitute is asked to do more work they should receive more pay.

Mahatara Youssef said on Nov. 3, 2021 a teacher at Russell Middle School used inappropriate language with students and asked the School Board to investigate.

The Brunswick County School Board meets the second Monday of the month at 7 p.m. at the Brunswick High School. All meetings are open to the public. For more information call (434) 848-3138 or visit www.brunswickcps.org.