BOE Work Session Notes - July 27, 2021

The Kingsport City Schools Board of Education held a work session on Tuesday, July 27, 2021. Several key items were discussed, including:
  • A 2021 summer learning report;
  • A report on health and safety protocols for the start of the 2021-22 school year;
  • An introduction of the Strategic Plan development process currently taking place;
  • A report on the remediation plan for the 2021-22 school year;
  • A report on KCS HR/personnel;
  • A report on Board policy updates and revisions; and 
  • A discussion regarding the 2021-22 Board meeting and work session schedule.
Work Session Audio
Detailed Work Session Notes
Dr. Moorhouse opened tonight's work session with a report on the KCS Summer Learning Experience that took place between Memorial Day and the July 4th holiday this summer.
  • On average, over 750 students attended summer learning camps each day, including opportunities for elementary, middle, and high school students.
  • Over 95,000 meals were served by the KCS School Nutrition Services department during the summer.
  • No positive COVID-19 cases of participating students were reported to KCS during summer programming.
Dr. Moorhouse presented a review of the health and safety protocols that will be in place when students return to school on August 2. 
  • Click below to view the full protocol document.
Dr. Moorhouse provided an introduction regarding the Strategic Plan development process currently underway in KCS.
  • The strategic plan currently under development will define the district's 5-year vision for success.
  • It will align values and commitments to measurable outcomes.
  • The Strategic Plan will communicate priorities to galvanize actions and foster effective decision-making.
  • Involving multiple stakeholder groups and individuals, the plan will be developed in the coming weeks and serve to align improvement actions.
Dr. Rhonda Stringham, Assistant Superintendent - Instruction, provided a report on plans for academic remediation for the 2021-22 school year.
  • The plan outlines the steps to be taken regarding professional learning, academic interventions, curriculum, social-emotional learning, and how federal funding can be used to support such efforts.
Jennifer Guthrie, Chief Human Resource Officer, presented a report on the status of KCS personnel and hiring.
  • The report included data and trends regarding hiring, retention, and applicants for multiple employee groups and types.  
Dr. Andy True, Assistant Superintendent - Administration, provided a review of Board Policy action to be considered in the coming months.
  • A general review of the policy creation/revision process was discussed, including an overview of the current Board Policy Manual.
  • The Tennessee School Boards Association supports KCS by providing policy services such as legal review and consult, notification of required policy revisions, draft policy creation, and an annual KCS Policy audit.
  • The majority of recommended policy revisions/creations are due to requirements in Tennessee Code Annotated and State Board of Education Policy.
  • Five current policies were presented for review and potential action at the August Board meeting:
    • 1.901 - Charter School Applications
      • Legislation that changes the charter school process has gone into effect. Amended charter applications shall be submitted to the TN Charter School Commission. Previously, these appeals had to be submitted to the State Board of Education. The TSBA model policy to align with this change.
    • 4.606 - Graduation Activities
      • SBOE Policy 2.103 (page 7) states that the Board shall develop a policy on how students meeting certain requirements will be noted and recognized. It goes on to list nine different ways that a student can be recognized at graduation. However, the current KCS policy is missing this list of recognitions. To align with SBOE Policy 2.103, TSBA recommends including this list in board policy 4.606.
    • 4.700 - Assessment Programs
      • Districts must now provide students with information on available career and technical education opportunities after aptitude assessment are administered. TSBA has updated model policy to reflect this requirement.
    • 5.302 - Sick Leave
      • Page 2, line 6 of current KCS policy states that sick leave for maternity purposes may be taken during the period of physical disability only. However, this is no longer the case due to a change in state law. Teachers can use sick leave for maternity leave purposes if pregnancy is verified by a physician and are no longer limited to taking this leave only during the period of physical disability. To be in compliance with state law as well as reduce redundancy throughout KCS policy, TSBA recommends removing this paragraph from this KCS board policy 5.302. Information regarding maternity leave can be found in board policy 5.305.
    • 6.402 - Physical Examinations and Immunizations
      • State law allows for religious and medical exceptions from immunization requirements. State law now includes an additional vaccine exemption. If, in the future, any COVID-19 or variant vaccine is required for students, an exemption will be granted for individuals whose religions tenets and practices conflict with vaccination. TSBA has updated model policy to include this additional exemption.
Jim Welch, Board President, led a discussion regarding business meeting and work session dates for the 2021-22 year.
  • The Board will consider potential adjustments to the 2021-22 meeting calendar to allow for the largest possible attendance by members.
  • The Board requested investigation of a potential revision to Policy 1.400 - School Board Meetings to best align future meeting schedules with policy and the City of Kingsport regulations regarding regular meetings.  Dr. True will bring back a potential revision at a future Board meeting.
The next meeting of the Board of Education will on Tuesday, August 10, 2021 at 6 p.m.  The meeting will take place in the Tennessee Room of the Administrative Support Center (400 Clinchfield Street).
For more information on KCS, visit, listen live on WCSK 90.3 FM, The Voice of KCS, read our blog, We Are KCS, download our mobile app for Apple/Android devices or call (423) 378.2100. We’re social too; follow us on Facebook (Kingsport City Schools), Instagram (@kcs_district), Twitter (@KCS_District), LinkedIn (Kingsport City Schools), and check out our YouTube Channel (KPTSchools).