BOE Meeting Notes - February 11, 2020

The Kingsport City Schools Board of Education held its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, February 11, 2020.  Several key items were discussed, including:
  • A report on the LEGO League program at Jackson Elementary School;
  • Recognition of Dobyns-Bennett High School students who were winners in the recent Eastman Black History Oratorical Contest;
  • Recognition of two D-B students who have been named ETSU Roan Scholars;
  • Consideration and approval of Board policies on first reading;
  • Consideration and approval of a KCS Budget amendment; and 
  • Presentation of the district quarterly financial report.
Meeting Audio
Detailed Meeting Notes


The Pledge of Allegiance was led this evening by Callie, Giana, Jack, and Laila Venzon.  The Venon's are quadruplets and students at John Sevier Middle School. 

Community Interest Report

Jackilyn Kenner (4th grade math teacher at Jackson Elementary School), along with students from the Jackson LEGO League team, presented a report on their experience and accomplishments this year.
  • To accomplish the goals of the LEGO League objective, the team worked to find a creative solution to a real-world problem and present that solution to a panel of judges.
  • The team demonstrated their teamwork skills in a "Core Values" challenge, while also designing and coding a robot that could accomplish a variety of missions.
  • The team finished in first place in Core Values and 3rd place in Robot Games at the regional competition, and in first place in Project Presentation at the state competition.


Board member Julie Byers recognized students from Dobyns-Bennett that were winners in the recent Eastman Black History Oratorical Contest.
  • The 2020 Eastman Black History Luncheon/Oratorical Contest took place on Wednesday, January 22, 2020 at the Eastman Lodge in Kingsport.
  • After being recognized for having the top submitted essays, five finalists presented a three-to-five minute oration based on their submitted writing.
  • The oration was scored on four components: Diction (choice of words), tone (voice quality), pronunciation (articulation), and creativity (self-expression).  Final scores were based on the combined score the written essay and oration, with results/awards presented at the conclusion of the luncheon.
  • D-B students ranked in the top five included:
    • Sonali Poobalasingham (Junior, 3rd overall)
    • Jacqueline Byers (Senior, 4th overall)
  • D-B students ranked in the top fifteen included:
    • Grace Wellman (Junior)
    • Cathryn Fetterman (Junior)
    • Ethan Murray (Junior)
    • Will New (Junior)
    • Pearson Mills (Sophomore)
  • Everyone is invited to attend the Black History Community Event on Saturday, February 15, 2020 at 7:30 p.m. at the Toy Reid F. Employee Center in Kingsport. Eastman will recognize all oratorical contest participants at this event. The winner of the essay contest will present their essay at the beginning of this event. Entertainment will be provided by Symphony of the Mountains.
Two D-B seniors were recognized for being selected as members of the 2024 class of the prestigious Roan Scholars Leadership Program at East Tennessee State University.  The honored students are:
  • Gavin Bentley 
    • Gavin is the CEO of the DBE underwater robotics team, which has competed at the international level.  He shares his love of robotics as an intern at STREAMWORKS and received an award of excellence from the National Academy of Future Scientists and Technologists.  He was also named to the inaugural list of the Appalachian Highlands "Twenty Under 20."
  • Sally Chikomb
    • Sally is a four-year member and current captain of the award-winning Dobyns-Bennett Color Guard and is actively engaged in numerous student organizations, including HOSA, Beta Club, S.H.O.U.T Youth Leadership, and the Y.E.L.L.! Mayor's Youth Council.  She has worked to support an orphanage in Africa where her parents work, including raising $1,600 for school supplies.

business items

Andy True, Assistant Superintendent - Administration, presented potential policy additions and revisions, to be considered on First Reading:
  • 1.100 - School District-School Board Legal Status and Authority (revised)
  • 1.101 - Role of the Board of Education* (new)
  • 1.202 - Duties of Board Members* (new)
  • 1.2021 (previously 1.1061) - Boardsmanship Code of Conduct* (revised)
  • 1.106 - Code of Ethics (revised)
  • 1.400 - School Board Meetings (revised)
  • 2.200 - Annual Operating Budget (revised)
  • 6.304 - Student Discrimination, Harassment, Bullying, Cyber-bullying and Intimidation (revised)
  • 1.901 - Charter School Applications (revised from 1.704 - Charter Schools)
  • After review and discussion, the Board approved the presented policies by a vote of 5-0.
David Frye, Chief Finance Officer, presented 2019-20 Budget Amendment #3 for consideration.
  • The proposed amendment adjusts estimated revenues to account for the acceptance of two STEM grants received by the district and allocates funds from the Unreserved Fund Balance to purchase a needed special education bus.
  • After discussion, the Board approved the budget amendment by a vote of 5-0.


Mr. Frye provided a financial update covering the second quarter of FY 2019-20.
  • As of the end of the second quarter, expenditures were roughly 45% of budget, which is in line for this time of year.
  • While BEP revenue is expected to higher than originally estimated, the amount received from county property taxes is estimated to be lower than expected.
  • Click below to view the full financial update.
The next meeting of the Board of Education will be a work session on Tuesday, February 25, 2019 at 6 p.m.  The work session will take place in the Tennessee Room of the Administrative Support Center (400 Clinchfield Street).
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