By Jennifer Britt
Tucker County Schools Superintendent Alicia Lambert has lifted the school mandate for masks effective the February 22. With declining COVID numbers in the county and zero in the schools, the School Board and Lambert have agreed now is the time to remove the mask. Lambert stated the latest COVID variant has reached its peak. If a student is experiencing systems they are encouraged to go to the clinic or health department for rapid testing and if test positive that student will be quarantined for five days. The clinic or health department will notify the school and the student will be excused from school. The schools will also continue to send out letters notifying parent if any students come into contact with a positive student.
Guest speaker Amber Kyle addressed the Board with an updated attendance report. Currently there are 947 students enrolled in Tucker County Schools. Tucker Valley has 468 students, Tucker County High School has 278, and Davis Thomas has 201. Although attendance rates are seemingly high, chronic absenteeism rates are also high. Due to students being out of school there are scheduling student and parent meetings being arranged for the upcoming weeks. According to Kyle the mind set of parents and student alike seem to be they were used to being absent due to COVID and are stuck in that mindset. Kyle is working with parents and students in hopes of changing that mind set and curving excessive absences from schools. Lambert explained students are allowed 10 unexcused absences and 10 parent written excuses before any adverse reaction can be taken by the school board. Doctor notes do not count towards these 20 days.
The Board approved the addition of several TCHS senior job shadow sites to be added to the current list. Students are urged to check with the school and the school website to see the full list. Allegheny Equine Veterinary Service in Elkins, MTech (Mon Co. Technical Education Center) in Morgantown, TC Sheriff’s Office in Parsons, and Family Law Judge, Lori Haynes, in Elkins are a few names added to the list.
The approval of several resignations was presented to the Board as well. Rose Ray from TVEMS resigned effective March 1, 2022. Fred Davis, Head Track Coach, of DTEMS, was effective February 10, 2022, and Brian Zirk, Head Coach Girls Basketball, of DTEMS was effective February 28, 2022.
The next regular meeting of the Tucker County Board of Education will be Monday, March 7, 2022 at 4:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at the TCBOE office