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La Vernia trustees nix e-cigs, say yes to weight equipment
Any thoughts of e-cigarettes being allowed on school premises have gone up in smoke, after La Vernia Independent School District (ISD) trustees approved moving forward with a ban on the smokeless alternative on all district premises and at all school events for students, staff, and visitors.
The policy will mirror the ban on cigarettes, said Dr. Cody Miller, the school board president, after a June 16 special meeting. The decision is based on concerns from the Centers for Disease Control, he said.
Trustees will move forward with policy changes to ban e-cigarettes. Administrators will work with the district’s legal counsel to draft policy revisions, which will be considered before the first day of school.
In other matters, the trustees approved the purchase of new weight-training equipment. The district will spend approximately $40,000 for this, after part of the expense was met by a donation from the athletic booster club.
A delivery date has not been set, but the trustees hope the equipment will arrive in time for the new school year.
Also related to finances, the trustees heard that the final numbers for the current budget will not be available until the end of August. More revenue is anticipated from increased property values and increased state and federal funding, Miller said. A full budget workshop is planned for June 30 to prepare the 2014-15 budget.
Continuing the monetary discussions, information about salary comparisons between La Vernia ISD, Floresville ISD, San Antonio ISD, and East Central ISD was provided to give the board and administration an understanding of La Vernia’s competitiveness in salaries for employees.
“In most cases, LVISD is very close to the salary amounts being paid by those other districts for similar positions,” Miller said.
Trustees also approved a step salary increase for all employees. Salary schedules will remain the same for next year; all employees will move up to the next step, Miller said. Individual raises will be determined based on the person’s years of experience, effective with their first paycheck for the next school year.
Stipends also were discussed and will be part of the budget workshop, Miller said.
The trustees also addressed several hiring issues, and approved the hire of Brenda Oates as the new director of special education, who likely will start in July.
In addition to several teachers who have been hired recently, the board also approved a new:
•La Vernia High School academic dean, Steven Verm (This is a new position)
•High school assistant principal, John Zamora
•Junior high counselor, Sheryl Mondragon
•Campus-based literacy coach, Tracy Vajdos.
Several teachers also have been approved, Miller said.
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