UPDATE: Grundy County school board selects new chairperson - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Grundy County school board selects new chairperson

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GRUNDY COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -

UPDATE: The Grundy County School Board meeting had a packed agenda Monday night.

Among the items, school board members gave an update on the search for a new football coach and also discussed using a superintendent evaluation tool.

However, the highlight of the meeting was the selection of a new board chairperson.

Phyllis Lusk was voted chairwoman during the meeting.

The former chairman, Robert Foster, resigned about three weeks ago. He says it was because of the growing animosity between his fellow board members and director of schools, Jessie Kinsey.

“If we bring a coach on board mid-school year, we've got to be able to pay him and the current supplement was for the previous football season,” school board member Gary Melton says. “So, there's going to be a budget amendment associated with the change, you just don't really know what that is until you size it up and negotiate that pay.”

The board agreed to have Kinsey narrow the applicants down to three and present those names to the board.

Kinsey says she hopes to hire someone by January.

The board plans to talk more about the salary at their next meeting.

As for as the superintendent evaluation tool, Lusk says the board is behind on the process.

They decided to table the issue until February.

Stay with WRCBtv.com for updates to this story.


PREVIOUS UPDATE: Statement from Jessie Kinsey, Director of Schools: “All of the incidents that should have been reported to the sheriff’s office were reported to the sheriff’s office when they occurred.  The sheriff will have to explain any actions he did, or did not take in regards to those reports.  Based on the advice of counsel, we will not have any further comment.  Our search yielded nothing new that hadn’t already been reported to his office.”


PREVIOUS UPDATE: Another challenge looms for the Grundy County School System as Board Chairman Robert Foster has resigned his position. 

Foster notified Mayor Michael Brady in a letter of resignation Tuesday.
             
In his resignation letter, Foster said he thinks certain members of the board are more interested in dividing the county than uniting for the betterment of children. 

School leaders are dealing with allegations of attempted rape against football players and trying to replace the football coach.
          
Channel 3 reached out to foster for comment, but we've not received a response. His letter is below:


PREVIOUS STORY: Channel 3 has learned that Grundy County Director of Schools Jessie Kinsey and Grundy County Sheriff Clint Shrum are planning to meet the week after Thanksgiving.

We reached out to both parties for comment.

Director Kinsey released a statement to us saying:

"The law outlines distinct differences between school system responsibilities and those of law enforcement.  The SRO is an employee of the Sheriff’s office, and not an employee of the school system.  Therefore, the SRO’s access to the camera monitors is set to view only.
 
The principals of each school are the only school employees who have full access to the camera system.  If the SRO needs to review the video, he will need to get permission from the principal to do so.  With regards to accessing the camera system from off campus, the school board attorney advised that only the principals needed remote access to the school camera system.
 
All of the cameras are still in place.  The school was simply relocating the camera monitors to the principal’s office.  The principal and I planned to meet with the sheriff next week to discuss more specific reasons for changing the SRO’s access to the camera system, but he has declined 
saying he will be out of town.  Out of professional courtesy to the Sheriff, I would like to discuss with him these reasons before disclosing to the media."

Sheriff Shrum sent Channel 3 a response to Director Kinsey's remarks:

"I haven’t declined. In fact, the meeting is scheduled for November 28th. Kinsey confirmed that was a good date in a text."

We will keep you updated on this story.


PREVIOUS STORY: The school resource officer at Grundy County High School no longer has access to the security cameras.

Sheriff Clint Shrum said the SRO went into his office on Friday and saw that his surveillance monitors were gone and had been moved to the principal's office.

The SRO now needs permission from the principal to look at the video. The sheriff says that could impact student safety and his department's emergency response plan.

Shrum said the monitors were eventually moved back into the SRO's office, but the video is still not able to be viewed without permission.

That same surveillance system is being used to figure out who vandalized a school board member's car.

Channel 3 has reached out to the Grundy County Director of Schools for a statement, but has not heard back.

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School Patrol

David Carroll covers education news and issues at schools across the Tennessee Valley.

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