City schools approve calendar

Major breaks ‘mirror’ county schools’
Dec 10, 2013

The Lebanon Special School District Board of Education met Monday where it approved the school calendar for the 2014-15 year.

Director of Schools Scott Benson said a calendar committee comprised of school principals, teachers and parents chose the proposed calendar. He said there were three different calendars for consideration.

Benson said the school calendar has many similarities with the Wilson County Schools 2014-15 calendar.

The calendar chosen highlights a two-week break for Fall Break, Oct. 6-17, and a one-week break for Spring Break, March 9-13.

“We thought this was a good idea and wanted to consider the needs of the families we share with Wilson County Schools,” Benson said.

While Benson noted the calendar was similar to the county, it didn’t match up exactly every day.

Benson said in the 2013-14 calendar, the city had 15 days that didn’t match up with the county, but in the 2014-15 calendar there were only eight days that didn’t match up, which was a step closer to being more family-friendly across districts.

“The administrators feel good about this calendar, and it was unanimous with the calendar committee,” Benson said.

The school board also voted in favor of a resolution that would eliminate caps on school buses.

Benson said the board was presented a resolution by the Tennessee School Board Association asking for support of legislation that lifts the caps on buses, and by doing so, money would be freed up elsewhere to better use in school and toward learning.

“Right now, school districts are required to rotate buses out after 17 years of service or 200,000 miles,” Benson said. “Buses are inspected annually and if they are mechanically sound, then we put them on the roads. Buses are very expensive, and this legislation would extend the life of a school bus by allowing those that are still mechanically sound to remain in service past the cap.”

Benson and the school board agreed that if buses are still deemed usable and safe and approved, the district should still use them.

The board also recognized American Education Week and each school in the district individually honored a “true friend of education” and a “true business friend of education” to receive a plaque for their support for the school.

Efforts included volunteering time or donating money or supplies to the school, among other things.

Byars Dowdy Elementary honored Heather Mitchell, with business friend Rochelle, McCulloch and Aulds, PLLC. 

Castle Heights Elementary honored Tracey Gill, with business friend Dr. Chad Williams and The Smile Gallery.

Coles Ferry Elementary honored Susan Roberts, with business friend Modern Woodmen Fraternal Financial.

Sam Houston Elementary honored Joyce Fitzpatrick, with business friend Office Max.

Walter J. Baird honored Kim Moss, with business friend Publix.

Winfree Bryant honored Ken Edwards, with business friend Bristol-Myers Squibb.

The Central Office also honored a business friend, Harrison’s Lock Service, for their help in re-keying four of the six schools in the district last spring.

Benson also recognized School Board Member Steve Jones at the close of the meeting for being a 2013 TSBA Quarter Century Club inductee. Jones has served on the Lebanon Schools board for 25 years.

“I remember my very first meeting I was so scared I didn’t know what to do,” Jones said. “It doesn’t seem like it’s been 25 years, it really doesn’t.”

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