The Roanoke County School Board recognized the Vinton Moose Lodge for hosting the first Holiday Breakfast for Roanoke County students and staff in the ICANN, FACES, and Autism K-12 programs.
Dr. Jessica McClung, director of Special Education and Pupil Personnel Services, thanked Clark Crawley, the events administrator at the Moose Lodge, for taking the initiative to contact her, offering to plan and host the event to benefit special needs students in the county.
A crowd of about 200 students, staff, bus drivers, police officers, and parents were served pancakes, sausage, fruit, and beverages on December 15 at the Moose Lodge on Washington Avenue in Vinton. Santa arrived on a fire truck to visit the students as part of the event.
The children ranged in age from preschool through grade 12 and are students in the ICANN/FACES classes for self-contained students and in the Autism classes.
According to McClung, the FACES (Functional Academic and Career Education Skills) program addresses functional academics and daily living skills for students with significant disabilities who require a modified curriculum.
Crawley, in turn, thanked Roanoke County for being so receptive to his suggestion and “getting behind it 100 percent.” He and the county schools hope this will become an annual event.
Vinton School Board member Tim Greenway commended the Moose Lodge for being “a great community group” who does a great deal for the schools, including partnering for benefits and banquets with PTAs and booster clubs.
During the School Board meeting, Superintendent Dr. Greg Killough recognized members of the School Board for “giving children the opportunity to change their stars” through their efforts every day on behalf of the students in Roanoke County. February is “School Board Appreciation Month.” Students from many schools across the county made banners to decorate the boardroom for the meeting or sent mementoes in honor of the occasion.
The budget work session following the general meeting dealt with funds other than the General Fund, including the Instructional Resources, Bus Replacement, Technology Replacement, Grant, Capital Projects, and Nutrition Funds.
George Assaid, director of Facilities and Operations, said that the bus replacement fund accounts for the replacement of school buses on a 15-year cycle with an average of 10 buses replaced each year, with an outlay of $1,182,513 planned for the 2018-2019 school year.
A 10-year Capital Improvement Plan through 2028 includes $1,500,000 for the Architectural and Engineering phase of construction at William Byrd High School in FY2019 with actual construction in 2021 and 2022 with an investment of about $21 million.
W.E. Cundiff is on the Capital Improvement Plan in FY2026 and 2027 with approximately $10 million in projects.
Rhonda Huffman, director of Nutrition Services for the county schools, explained the Nutrition Fund to School Board members. The Nutrition Fund is self-funded through food sales and subsidies from state and federal breakfast and lunch programs, and accounts for serving of breakfast, snacks, and lunches to students. Federal reimbursements are expected to total around $2.6 million during the 2018-19 school year.
Board members were insistent that all 26 county schools provide breakfast programs for students in the coming year.
Budget work sessions continue through March when the board plans to adopt a budget on March 22, which is due to the Board of Supervisors on April 1.