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CCS applying for JROTC program

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

The Chilton County Board of Education unanimously approved applying for a JROTC program during the Dec. 18 meeting.

Board President Angie Sanderson was absent. Since Sanderson could not attend, Vice President Pam Price led the meeting.

The application is for the 2021-2022 school year.

Superintendent Jason Griffin said the program requires two staff members to be funded. One is required to be an officer, and the other is required to be enlisted.

“Is the funding source going to come from the schools?” board member Keith Moore said.

Griffin said if approved, the class would be offered at Chilton County High School but would be open to ninth through 12th students at every school. Each of the schools will pay a percentage of the salary of one of the staff members. K-12 schools will pay 15%, and Chilton County and Jemison high schools would pay 20%. Career tech funding would pay for the additional staff member.

Isabella High School Principal Ricky Porter said this cost breakdown had been discussed with the principals during a group meeting, and most spoke in favor of it.

“During the meeting, there was no opposition expressed to it,” Porter said.

Griffin said he had looked at putting the program at LeCroy Career Technical Center, but it did not have some of the elements, including an auditorium, needed.

“Chilton County High School was the best option logistically,” Griffin said. “If any students at our other five high schools wants to go take JROTC … they can ride the career tech bus, and the career tech bus will provide transportation to Chilton County High School.”

Board member Jacqueline Sullivan asked if this would require having an additional bus driver. Griffin said this could be done by the drivers who currently drive the career tech route.

JROTC would provide funding for equipment and uniforms.

“It’s a shame that we are not giving our kids access to this,” Griffin said.

Price asked why the program could not be located at Jemison High School, since the school had been wanting to offer the program. Griffin said it would require more buses, and CCHS made more sense since buses were already coming to Clanton to LCTC.

JROTC is considered a career tech program and has to be applied for by the school system, not a specific school.

If JROTC does not approve the application, the school system will not have the program.

At the begining of the voting session, Jemison Middle School was recognized for its honorable mention and $250 in the Alabama Association of School Boards video contest.

During a work session prior to the voting session, Price asked if the BOE could use local funding to pay for membership to the Chilton County Chamber of Commerce. Chief School Finance Officer Melynda Buck said local funding could be used in this way.

Also during the meeting, Buck clarified that school fundraiser cash winners needed to be determined by a game of skill, not a raffle or game of chance, to be in compliance with state laws. Whether door prize drawings could be used to determine cash prize winners is being researched.

Also during the voting session, the Board approved:

  • A contract for Safe and Civil Schools behavioral intervention training program at Clanton Middle.
  • A supplement for a Jemison High School golf coach.
  • Allowing the Central Alabama Performing Arts Guild to rent the Chilton County High School auditorium.
  • New software and equipment for visitor check in. The software will be able to flag if a visitor is a sex offender when their ID is scanned, Griffin said.
  • Approved posting jobs to hire two child nutrition employees.
  • Having background checks on Jemison basketball volunteers.