BOE Work Session and Meeting Notes - November 30, 2021

The Kingsport City Schools Board of Education held a work session and regular meeting on Tuesday, November 30, 2021. Several key items were discussed, including:
  • Work Session:
    • Recognition of the Dobyns-Bennett High School Band for winning the Class AAA National Championship;
    • An architect project update on the former Sullivan North High School, which will be renovated into a KCS middle school;
    • A review of Board policies recommended for revision;
  • Regular Meeting:
    • Approval of a resolution opposing the use of partisan school board elections;
    • Approval of Board policy actions;
    • Approval of a monetary donation to fund lighting and sound upgrades at Dobyns-Bennett High School;
    • Approval of 2021-22 KCS Budget Amendment #2;
    • Approval of an architect proposal for lighting and sound upgrades at J. Fred Johnson Stadium at Dobyns-Bennett;
    • Approval to purchase School Nutrition Services software;
    • Approval to award a bid for School Nutrition Services dairy products;
    • A report on the Fiscal Year 2020-21 financial audit;
    • A Quarterly Financial Report for the 4th quarter of Fiscal Year 2020-21; 
    • A Quarterly Financial Report for the 1st quarter of Fiscal year 2021-22; and
    • A review of the Superintendent's Mid-Year Progress Report.
Meeting Audio
Detailed Work Session Notes


The Pledge of Allegiance was led this evening by six students from the Palmer Center: Greyson Doty, Cooper Edwards, Emeline Hobbs, Layla Manuel, Paul Montgomery, and Mason Shepard.  Greyson is the son of Micah and Sophie Doty.  Cooper is the son of Stacy and Paula Edwards.  Emeline is the daughter of Alan and Ashley Hobbs.  Layla is the daughter of Kevin and Krista Manuel.  Paul is the son of Curtis and Johanna Montgomery.  Mason is the son of Analica Shepard.


Board President Jim Welch recognized the Dobyns-Bennett High School Marching Band, which was named the Band of America (BOA) Class AAA National Championship at the BOA Grand National Championships on November 21, 2021.
  • The championships took place at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana.
  • In addition to winning the overall Class AAA championship, the D-B Band received the top Class AAA scores for Outstanding Music Performance and Outstanding Visual Performance.  The band was also named an overall finalist when competing against bands of all class sizes.
  • In finals performance, the band placed eighth overall when competing against the top Class AAAA and AAA bands in the nation. 
  • The band is led by Lafe Cook, director, as well as:
    • Drum Majors
      • Conner Hall
      • Ella Halliburton
      • Grace Nelson
      • Bethany Triplett
    • Guard Captains
      • Reagan Doner
      • Ericka Pierce

discussion items

Dineen West, President of Cain Rash West Architects, Inc. (CRW), provided an update on the renovation of the former Sullivan North High School, which is being renovated to house the "new" John Sevier Middle School.
  • CRW has been leading the design phase of the project, through an ongoing collaborative process with KCS and Sevier administrators and staff.
  • The design phase has included a deep review of the identified educational and design needs for the renovated school.  CRW has based their design work on this review.
Dr. Andy True, Assistant Superintendent - Administration, provided a review of several Board Policy actions to be considered at the December Board meeting.  Policies for consideration included:
  • 4.201 - Class Size Ratios (NEW, 2nd Reading)
  • 1.700 - School System Goals (REVISED)
  • 1.8011 - Emergency Closings (REVISED)
  • 2.300 - Compatibility of Services (NEW, 1st Reading)
  • 5.306 - Military Leave (NEW, 1st Reading)
  • 6.300 - Code of Conduct (REVISED)
  • 6.306 - Interference/Disruption of Schools Activities (NEW, 1st Reading)
  • 6.4081 - Safe Relocation of Students (REVISED)
Detailed Meeting Notes (Immediately following Work Session)
The Board considered a resolution opposing the use of partisan elections to elect Board of Education members.  
  • The Tennessee General Assembly recently passed House Bill 9072, which allows for the election of school board members to be conducted on a partisan basis.  If utilized, a person seeking a position on a school board would campaign as the nominee or representative of a political party.  
  • Currently, elections for a seat on the Kingsport Board of Education are non-partisan, meaning that a school board candidate does not designate his/her party affiliation when running for election.  The names of candidates for school board elections are included on the ballots without reference to any party affiliation, and any qualified candidate can run for a school board seat.  
  • The majority of states currently have nonpartisan school board elections, with only a small number allowing for partisan elections for school boards. 
  • After review and discussion, the Board voted 4-1 to approve the resolution.
Dr. True provided a review of several Board Policy revisions for potential action.  Policies presented for consideration included:
  • 5.202 - Separation Practices for Non-Certified Employees (NEW, 2nd Reading)
  • 4.201 - Class Size Ratios (NEW)
  • 5.117 - Procedure for Granting Tenure (REVISED)
  • 5.201 - Separation Practices for Non-Tenured Teachers (REVISED)
  • 6.202 - Home Schools (REVISED)
  • 6.500 - Students with Special Needs (REVISED)
After review and discussion, the Board voted 5-0 to approve the policies as presented.
David Frye, Chief Finance Officer, presented a monetary donation that is being provided by a community member for lighting and sound upgrades at Dobyns-Bennett High School.  
  • The anonymous donation is being provided specifically for upgrades at J. Fred Johnson Stadium.
  • Based on its age and current condition, the sound system in the stadium is in need of repair.
  • The Board voted 5-0 to accepted the anonymous donation.
Mr. Frye presented 2021-22 Budget Amendment #2 for Board consideration.
  • Specific information on the Budget Amendment included:
    • The previously approved 2021-22 Budget included funding to decrease by one-half (for impacted teachers) the difference between teacher step numbers that were below the step represented by their actual years of experience. The proposed Budget Amendment this evening would further eliminate the last one-half of the gap.  After discussion, the amendment was revised to make the salary gap-closure adjustment for impacted teachers retroactive to the beginning of the 2021-22 year.
    • Item one was tabled until the December business meeting (to allow for further information to be provided to the Board).
  • After discussion, the Board approved the proposed budget amendment (items 2-4 and the School Project Fund) by a vote of 5-0.
Mr. Frye reviewed a proposal for architectural services from Holston Engineering. 
  • The proposal covers engineering services for lighting and sound system upgrades at J. Fred Johnson Stadium.
  • After discussion, the Board approved the proposal by a vote of 5-0.
Mr. Frye reviewed recently received bids for new School Nutrition Services software.
  • Two vendors submitted bids for the project, EMS LINQ, Inc, and the current vendor being utilized by KCS, Horizon Software.
  • Based on a review of software capability and overall cost, the KCS recommendation is to award the bid to EMS LINQ, Inc.
  • The bid pricing would remain the same over the next ten years and would be funded by the School Nutrition Services budget.
  • After a review, the Board voted 5-0 to accept the bid from EMS LINQ, Inc.
Mr. Frye reviewed recently reviewed bids for School Nutrition Services dairy products.
  • Two vendors submitted bids for dairy products, DFA Dairy Fluid, LLC/Mayfield Dairy, and the current vendor being utilized by KCS, Prairie Farms Dairy.
  • Based on a review of the quality of service and overall cost savings of $30,861.90 in the first year, the KCS recommendation is to award the bid to Prairie Farms Diary. 
  • The contract not-to-exceed amount is $350,000.00 and the agreement begins January 8, 2022 and runs through June 30, 2023.
  • After review, the Board voted 5-0 to accept the bid from Prairie Farms Dairy.
Mr. Frye presented the results of the audit of Financial Statements for the School Activity Funds for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2021.
  • All School Activity Funds are in good financial condition and have received an unqualified opinion.
  • Eight schools received no findings, with a finding at two schools, which has been reviewed by bookkeepers and principals.  Findings from previous years have been corrected in full.
Mr. Frye presented the Financial Updates for the 4th quarter of 2020-21 and the 1st quarter of 2021-22.
The next meeting of the Board of Education will be held on Tuesday, December 14, 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).