Barbour BOE approves hirings

PHILIPPI — The Barbour County Board of Education discussed superintendent recommendations and employee assignments in an executive session Tuesday.

The BOE approved the hiring of Roger Lee Barcus as a bus operation and mechanic assistant and Rebecca Gallo as a substitute cook. They also approved Samantha Mayle’s entering the bus operator training program for Barbour County Schools.

A Philip Barbour Career and Technical Center (CTC) official also presented at the meeting in regard to the facility’s simulated workplace experience and progress.

Speaker Tonya Ferguson informed the board that the program is running smoothly in the fourth year of the simulated workplace. Time clocks are used to calculate the students’ hours to issue mock paychecks that can be used to purchase items for the workplace. Also, the program is mandating random drug testing with a 95.9 percent negative rate for the 2015-2016 year.

The Philip Barbour Career and Technical Center also offers Adult Basic Education (ABE)/Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) and Option Pathway and Credit Recovery for students who fall behind their peers.

The program ABE contained 30 students enrolled throughout the 2015-2016 year. 20 of the students tested and passed the TASC, and proceeded to enroll in CNA, LPN, CDL and college, or moved into new jobs and promotions. The program also recently received its second grant from WVDE for $5,000.

Ferguson stated the Career and Technical Center has more than 630 students in their classes, some of whom are in multiple classes throughout the center. The total enrollment of Phillip Barbour High School is 649.

The Career and Technical Center offers eight different classes for the students to choose from, including Power, Structural and Technical Systems, Agribusiness Systems, Business Education, Early Childhood Program, ProStart and FCCLA, STEM/PLTW/TSA, Therapeutic Services and New Tech. All of the programs include different opportunities for certification and advancement through college and in workplaces.

Ferguson also stated, “The CTC is no longer only for workforce, (but) to raise awareness of the career opportunities, also for college.”

The goal of the CTC is “To focus on career and college education in the hospitality and medical fields.”

Upcoming completers in the CTC spoke on the program’s behalf to list the improvement and changes in their outlook on the pathways they have chosen.

Alex Suder, a student in the Power, Structure, and Technical Systems class, stated, “Without this class, I wouldn’t know where I would be. Because of this class, I am now looking into a job in this field.”

Jeremy Upton, a student in the Agribusinesses class, said the program “helps the students become well-rounded individuals.”

The CTC is focusing on continuing academic support, improving the simulated workplace and providing CTC middle school visits throughout the county. The program is also hoping to add — provided with influence from the students — a public safety program to help with the state’s urgent need for workers. The program will prepare students to work as police officers, regional jail workers and security guards.