New principal hired at BMS

Following an executive session lasting more than an hour, members of the Barbour County Board of Education voted Monday to reject Superintendent Dr. Joseph Super’s initial recommendation of who should be hired as principal of Belington Middle School.

Jennifer Swift was named on the personnel recommendations for the May 13 board meeting agenda. Board members voted that night to table any decisions on her appointment. Swift’s name appeared again on Monday’s agenda, recommending she be hired as principal.

Two board members, Eric Ruf and Dana Stemple, voted to hire Swift; however, Doward Matlick, Joanne McConnell and Bob Wilkins voted against it.

“Please provide the board with a name for principal of Belington Middle School,” Wilkins said.

“I can do that tonight,” Super said. “I recommend Mike Ferguson.”

Matlick, McConnell, Ruf and Wilkins voted to hire Ferguson, and Stemple voted against it. Board members did not go into executive session prior to voting on Ferguson.

Also during Monday’s meeting:

  • Members of the board worked on their self-evaluation.

“By statute, the board is required to go over its handling of issues over the past year,” Wilkins said. “We already have our goals so we are not actually reviewing goals at this time. We are looking at indicators of effectiveness.”

Wilkins said this is the time for the board to look at the job they have done, and tweak some of the areas where they need to improve.

The board reviewed and discussed 16 questions for its self-evaluation. Wilkins said a summary statement will be presented to the public at the next board meeting, and put into the meeting’s minutes explaining how the board believes it has performed.

Because of the length of the meeting, board members voted after almost three hours and 30 minutes to table the evaluation of Superintendent of Schools Dr. Joseph Super until the next board meeting, which is 6 p.m. May 28 at the board of education office.