In this edition of UnifiEd’s School Board Watch Blog, we will take a look at the agenda for the November 15th, 2018 regularly scheduled session of the Hamilton County School Board Meeting. The meeting will be held in the Hamilton County School Board Meeting Room at 3074 Hickory Valley Road and is set to begin at 5:30 p.m. The meeting will be livestreamed by HCDE through their Facebook page and the recording will be posted here on the UnifiEd blog afterwards.


View the full agenda and supporting documents >


Hot Topics:

  • Student board members and the officers of the Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council (SSAC) will speak about the Youth Summit they attended earlier this year and discuss their roles as officers of the SSAC.


Recognitions and Presentations:

  • HCDE will recognize The Howard School teacher, Jessica Hubbuch, as a chosen member of the inaugural Tennessee Teacher Ambassador Network. Through a very rigorous selection progress, Hubbuch rose to the top as an exemplary teacher to serve in this role. She will be be closely partnering with division leaders at the Tennessee Department of Education, engage around high priority work at the state level, serve as part of an advisement group, and communicate frequently with colleagues and stakeholders, statewide, to inform local policy and practice.
  • Bess T. Shepherd Elementary, Normal Park Museum Magnet, Chattanooga Center for Creative Arts, CSAS Lower, CSAS Upper, Lookout Mountain Elementary, Nolan Elementary, and Signal Mountain Middle/High will all be recognized for achieving Reward status. Reward status is the top distinction a school can earn in Tennessee. Reward schools are those that are improving overall student academic achievement and student growth for all students and student groups.
  • HCDE will recognize Sale Creek Middle High School and Signal Mountain Middle High School for athletic achievements.
  • Superintendent, Dr. Bryan Johnson, will be updating the board each month on strategies being implemented and progress towards the goals outlined with the Future Ready 2023 plan. The plan outlines five action areas: Accelerating Student Achievement, Future Ready Students, Great Teachers and Leaders, Effective and Efficient Operations and Engaged Community. This month, the board will be updated on Future Ready Students.


Field Trips:

  • Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences Upper will send high school students to Madrid, Spain for language immersion and cultural enrichment.
  • East Hamilton School and Signal Mountain Middle/High School will participate in sports related field trips.
  • Red Bank High School will participate in a JROTC related field trip.
  • Signal Mountain Middle High School will send members of the middle school science bowl team to  compete in the Middle School Science Bowl Competition.
  • STEM School Chattanooga will send members of the robotics team to compete in the Rocket City Regional Robotics Competition, the Smoky Mountain Regional Robotics Competition, and the FIRST World Championship.
  • Chattanooga High, Center for Creative Arts will participate in a music related field trip.
  • Brown Middle School will send students enrolled in the Beta Club to participate in the State Jr. Beta Club Convention.



Board approval is sought for:

  • The purchase of electrical material for Howard Middle School totalling $107,201.12 with funds to be provided from Capital Funds.
  • A list of architectural/engineering and design firms for HCDE projects to be used on an “as-needed basis”. These are considered “Professional Services” and as such are not required to be bid or quoted. This list is presented annually to the Board for approval, with updates as may be necessary.
  • The purchase of resources from Pioneer Valley Educational Press Inc. (DBA Pioneer Valley Books) for 2018-19 school year. The goal is to provide student instructional and Professional Development texts and resources district-wide to schools. This purchase will be in excess of $25,000.00 with funding to be provided through Federal and/or State grants, school based Title I Federal budgets, General-purpose funding, self-funded grants, and school/district donations.

Ratification of Emergency/Early approval is sought for:

  • The addition to Snow Hill Elementary School totalling $5,448,000 with funding to be provided by Capital Funds.


Budget Amendments:

  • Board approval is needed for Federal Grants and Self-Funded Programs for FY 2019 for the following budget amendments:
  • School Improvement Grant, with transfers between line items and a net increase of $600,000.00
  • Priority Schools State Grant, with transfers between line items and a net increase of $921,886.00
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers (Year 2), with transfers between line items and a net increase of $2,500.00
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers (Year 5), with transfers between line items and a net increase of $2,500.00
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers (Year 1), with transfers between line items
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers (Year 5 ELA), with transfers between line items and a net increase of $10,000.00
  • CTE Perkins Reserve New Skills For Youth Grant, with transfers between line items
  • Additional approval is sought for:
    • The budget amendment for the Priority Schools Principal Incentive State Grant for FY2019 totaling $79,200.00. Four priority school principals are eligible for the recruitment bonus and two priority school principals are eligible for the retention bonus.
    • The use of ArbiterSports as the vendor for sports official management. Through a cooperative agreement, scheduling, managing, and paying and completing 1099 tax forms for school sports officials would be handled by ArbiterSports for a fee of $1.50 per transaction. The fee would be paid from the account for the particular sport who hired the official. Each school will establish an account with ArbiterSports and fund that account at the beginning of each sports season by writing a check based on estimating the number of officials needed for the season. ArbiterSports will transfer payment from the school’s account to the official’s account upon authorization from the school. Any excess in the school’s account at the end of the season would be refunded to the school or used to fund the next sports season. All tax reporting (1099s) would be the responsibility of ArbiterSports.


Administrative Business Matters:

  • Board approval is sought for:
    • The property line adjustment to Alpine Crest Elementary. The adjustment will move the neighboring property line one foot east of an existing retaining wall and will move HCDE’s property line approximately one foot west of an existing sidewalk that connects to North Cliff Lane. The adjustment will allow the neighbor to maintain the wall and grounds west of the wall. It will also provide school access to the existing sidewalk.
    • CSX to provide an electrical service easement at Howard High School. The easement will not affect school operations or future development. The electrical service is required to power improvements to the railway that borders Howard’s
    • property. CSX has offered $10,500.00 for the easement.


Board Policies:


Board Matters:

  • Board approval is sought for:
    • A parent request to review the zero tolerance suspension appeal decision for their child.
  • Legal Services: A total of $20,000.00 in legal fees was paid in the month of October to Bennett & DeCamp, PLLC.




  • November 21-23, 2018: Thanksgiving Holiday (Schools Closed; Central Office Closed from November 22-23, 2018)
  • December 3, 2018: Partnership Advisory
  • December 13, 2018: Board Meeting