Harlan County Schools reported continued improvement in food service during a special meeting of the board of education on Thursday.
Many of the changes to the program over the past two years have been driven by standards and guidelines set by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in order to remain eligible to provide free meals for all children.
Jack Miniard, director of school food service, reported growing success with the new “Grab-N-Go” breakfast menu. When compared to the prior year (December 2013 to December 2014), the monthly participation rate for breakfast had jumped from 50 percent to 77 percent.
Additions and alterations to the lunch menu have also increased participation up to 86 percent of the student population this year, he added.
The board again discussed the opportunity to add agricultural education programs to the high school curriculum in the near future. Superintendent Mike Howard told the board the program would be quite expensive but that the possibility of a grant could be available in June to help fund it.
Howard told the board the district would continue to evaluate all opportunities to bring agriculture education back to the high school.
The board recognized its vice chairman, Wallace Napier, for achieving Level II and Level III in the Kentucky School Boards Association Academy of Studies.
Evarts elementary student Angel Wynn was given special recognition by the board for winning a state essay contest sponsored by the Kentucky Retired Teachers Association. She was awarded that honor during the KRTA’s annual convention held April 22.
Howard reported that three certified staff had notified the board of their retirement. In addition, eight classified employees had resigned, five had been hired and one had transferred since the last meeting.
The board approved payment of a couple of construction projects related to the football complex: $14,601.26 to Green Construction Company for work completed and $5,543 for a change order involving valves added to the geothermal heating system at the main building.
Site Base Council reports were accepted for Cumberland Elementary School as presented by Thomas Collins and James A. Cawood Elementary School as presented by Principal John Carter.