Credit Card Policy
“I don’t know how much, if ever it’s been used,” she told the board.
She said the pandemic showed a need to use the credit card policy in some capacity. It allowed credit cards to be issued to employees for school purchases. Superintendent Steven Loughridge said that while the credit card policy has been in placed, it just didn’t gain traction and eventually was forgotten.
“We’ve had several employees who needed to make purchases that required a card because the vendor would not take a check,” Smith said.
She told the board that she wanted to start low and slow-a low limit and with only a few having a card. Card balances are paid in full each month so no interest accrues. The goal would be to at least have all principals to have a card and then gradually expand.
“We won’t just be issuing cards to whoever,” she said, adding employees will have paperwork to sign before receiving the cards.
“We’re going to work out all the kinks, have a low limit, I’ll be the administrator of the cards. I’ll reconcile the statements, I’m not afraid of it.”
Smith said she’d start the process, get bids and keep the board up-to-date on progress.
“I see a need for it. It’s relevant for the school district,” she said. “Most schools and entities use them.”
The board voted to declare several desks as surplus. The desks were donated by Mohawk Industries and while the system used several, some were not used. The desk will be donated to the crisis center which is in the process of being set up.
SPL OST Outline
The board adopted a resolution to seek another Special Local Option Sales Tax, or SPLOST, for $25,500,000 in order to fund capital outlay projects in order to get the referendum on the ballot on March 16.
Those projects include:
- Renovations and improvements to Murray County High School, including athletic facilities.
- Improvements and equipment for Gladden Middle School.
- Renovations, improvements, and equipping Northwest Elementary School.
- Technology upgrades and equipment.
- Purchases of new buses.
- Reroofing and renovations to the Enrollment Center Complex including gym at old Murray County High School.
- System-wide renovations and improvements and adding to, remodeling, renovating, improving and equipping existing educational buildings, properties and facilities of the school district, and acquiring any property, both real and personal, and necessary equipment.
Government investment tabulation
Smith also pointed out an addition to the financial statements.
“We have deposits out of the general fund into a local government investment pool,” she said.
The government investment pool can get up to two-percent interest and just started.
“The deposit that has gone in this week will sit there until payroll is run. You’ll start seeing the deposits and interest,” she said.
Smith said they are millions in the pool and each entity gets a return on their investment.
Financial Innovator of the Year
Loughridge was presented with the Financial Innovator of the Year award from the Georgia Association of School Business Officials. Smith received the award in his place at the GASBO meeting.
“I ran into so m any people who said ‘what a great, great superintendent you work for. We think he’s a great man,'” Smith recounted. “That’s the reputation this district has and he has.”
Rachelle Terry updated the board on the use of the Lexia program for students who are English learners.
“We are in the top three-percent for student usage in the state,” she said. “Our English learners outpaced many other in the state whe we did high stakes testing last year.”
Although the program is online, it is teacher led and directed. The program assesses students at the beginning of the year and are placed where they need to be. If they need help, there are supports built in. The program was purchased with Title 3 funding.
“We have to have evidenced based programs and this one was highly recommended.” she said.
Mr. Gladden can remain at GMS
The school board made the decision to allow an out-of-district student finish out his eighth-grade year at his school after his mother requested it at last week’s meeting. Rhonda Gable, mother of the student, said they recently moved out of district but wanted her son to finish out the year at GMS. She said her son was a straight A student, a football player, and voted Mr. Gladden.