December 2018

Thanks for reading Fluco Blog! I’m Perrie Johnson, Fork Union’s representative to the Fluvanna County School Board. My goal with Fluco Blog is to let people know what’s going on at School Board meetings beyond the reports available online. Be forewarned, when it comes to discussion, most of the comments I remember turn out to be mine! Here’s the latest…

The big news for December was a continuation of the Alliance Club request to turn the Fluco F rainbow colors.  Before we got very far into the issue, the Board read a statement addressing the question of what we knew about how a local radio show host acquired a copy of the original request. The statement was approved by all members and pretty much said none of us released it, and none of us know who did.

Since the request never turned into an actual vote last month (I moved for approval but no one seconded and the motion died) it was possible to add it to the agenda again.  Questions about whether FCPS actually owns the trademark were answered (yes) and approval was rescheduled for later in the evening.  If I had remembered a Board member was absent (Mr. Pullen) I wouldn’t have voted to reschedule approval for that night.  I apologize that I forgot.  There was a lot going on.  About 10 speakers came forward in favor of approving the request and I only remember one against. (Another speaker asked for alternate bus routes to keep schools open during inclement weather and also questioned the effectiveness of the early release days for professional development.)

When the vote came around, Ms. Stewart made a motion to approve the request of the Alliance Club to change the colors of the Fluvanna F.  It was seconded by Ms. Pace – spoiler alert – you don’t have to vote to approve an item to second the motion.  The vote was a tie, Ms. Stewart and I were in favor, Ms. Pace and Mr. Rittenhouse against.  By policy, tie votes are automatically rescheduled for the next meeting so Mr. Pullen will get to participate after all.  I’m relieved.  This meeting was postponed because of snow last week.  All members would have been present if the weather hadn’t intervened.

I explained my vote in my last post, but I’ll quickly repeat that Fluvanna has approved a color change to the Fluco F by another school sanctioned club in the past.  I think pointing out how this group is different from that group, and making the decision based on evaluating our differences is unnecessary.   Rather than compare clubs and assign value by letting some change the logo and some not, as long as any group is already sanctioned by FCPS I’m in favor of treating everyone the same.  As one public speaker pointed out, maybe we should consider the logo as belonging to the kids, not the school system.  With the oversight that school administrators consider a sanctioned club a legitimate use of students’ time and school resources, I’d like to also consider them equally valuable and hold them to the same standards and the same benefits.  That wasn’t so quick after all, was it?

Minutes from the Staff Advisory meetings are always included in the online information.  This month’s indicated changes to the staff survey.  I asked for a survey committee so staff has control over the information they want to communicate.  I also asked for questions on testing and what we can do better to retain staff (that doesn’t cost much money).

Speaking of money, the amount of money to be returned to the county because it was not spent last school year is either a little or a lot less than expected, depending on who you ask.  Reasons were given, and I think accepted, but I hope communication on this issue between the School Board and Board of Supervisors improves in the future. I’ll definitely make that my responsibility.

The meeting pretty much ended with about another 10 public speakers and, as I remember, all but one in favor of the Alliance Club request.  We vote again in January.

I’ll be away for the next week or two and probably not able to check for comments.  Thanks for being patient with me.

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This blog is a personal blog, written and edited by me.  The views expressed in this blog are purely my own and do not represent the Fluvanna County School Board, the school superintendent, or anyone else. Comments added by others are not necessarily my opinions and I am not responsible for their content.