Webster County Board of Education voted Monday to name Aaron Harrell as the next superintendent of Webster County schools. The vote was 3-0 as members James Nance and Jill Simpson were not present.
The vote is the second taken by the board. The first was taken Friday, May 13, but because it was a special called meeting and a vote was not on the agenda released to media, the action was nullified by law.
By state law, special called meetings by taxpayer funded boards, commissions, and councils can only address items included in the publicly released agenda.
“That was my fault,” said Board Chairman Mickey Dunbar. “I didn’t look closely enough at the agenda we sent out. It was certainly not anything intentional.”
Dunbar said that in addition to the closed session, the agenda should have included a vote in open session.
After the vote, Dunbar quipped to Harrell that he was “still undefeated.”
Harrell joked back, “It feels good that you have enough confidence in me to not just vote for me once but twice, even after you had time to think about it.”
Board member Venita Murphy reinforced her confidence in the vote.
“It was a tough decision,” she said. “We had three great candidates. But you won. I’m confident you’ll do a wonderful job.”
Harrell will take over July 1. He replaces retiring Rhonda Callaway who will leave June 30.
The board also heard from finance officer Brandi Burnett, who presented the salary schedule for the 2022-23 school year. The total for personnel is part of the tentative budget for the next fiscal year, she told the board.
“We included a two% raise for all certified, classified, and (family resource) employees,” Burnett explained. “We felt like we could do this responsibly.”
Burnett said it was something she felt the board needed to do to help retain and attract employees.
The board approved the schedule.
In other business, the board:
• approved the 2022-23 student fee schedule with minor changes to some high school and sports fees.
• approved the 2022-23 payroll schedule.
• approved the tentative budget for 2022-23.
• rejected bids of $1,900.00 each for two surplus buses from Kentucky Interlocal School Transportation Association (KISTA) and voted to advertise for sale to the public.
• accepted the 2022-23 technology plan from chief information officer Mike Stone.