BOE approves new coach, sets grad dates

Published 1:32 pm Monday, April 25, 2011

Among its many actions Thursday night, the Butler County Board of Education formally approved the hiring of Earnest Hill as the new head football coach for Greenville High School.

“I’m very excited about the situation and the job,” Hill said. “My family and I are all really looking forward to returning to Greenville and I’m glad for the opportunity.”

Hill, currently assistant coach at Spanish Fort, is not new to GHS. He previously served as an assistant coach under Bryant Vincent in 2006.

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It was Hill’s previous brief stint at GHS that concerned board member Mickey Jones, who cast the lone dissenting vote.

“My vote was strictly due to the fact he left us before. I know Coach Hill and I have no doubt he will do an outstanding job at the high school,” Jones said.

“But as someone who has coached kids in McKenzie for years and seen so many coaches and assistants come and stay only one year, two years and then they are done, I don’t think it’s fair to the kids.”

Jones said he spoke with Hill following the meeting and expressed his reasons for his vote.

“I told (Hill) I think he’s certainly qualified for the job. But I really want to see someone who starts with players in the 8th grade and is still their coach when they are seniors. The players buy into a coach’s system and get to depend on him,” Jones said.

When queried by board member Billy Jones about the hiring process for Hill, Superintendent Darren Douthitt said interviews were held for the position.

“We picked the top three candidates from this interview process,” Douthitt said. “We mulled over the decision thoroughly to be sure we made the right choice.”

Graduation dates were announced Thursday by the superintendent: McKenzie School-Wednesday, May 24; Greenville High-Thursday, May 25 and Georgiana School, Friday, May 26 with times TBA.

The board took the following actions Thursday night:

*Passed a resolution authorizing use of federal funds to pay certain employees in place of using state and local funds, due to the impact of proration on the district. The board then formally approved the positions being paid for with federal funds.

*Approved 2011 budget amendment in order to be in compliance with federal guidelines.

*Approved Achiever Award sponsorship

*Received report of bids on countywide pest control services with Salter’s Exterminating providing the lowest bid of $1,019.00

*Approved lease for the Town of McKenzie to use McKenzie School’s Baseball-Athletic Field.

*Approved request for permission for Child Nutrition Program to serve as the vendor for the City of Greenville’s Summer Feeding Program.

*Approved request for permission for the Child Nutrition Program to offer Seamless Summering Feeding Program at Georgiana School.

*Approved request for permission to advertise for bids for milk, bread and ice cream.

*Approved request to conduct Summer School at Greenville High and Georgiana June 6-20, Monday through Thursday and Greenville Middle School June 6-30, Monday through Thursday. Cost will be $50 per credit.

*Approved math textbook adoptions with the stipulation the books will only be purchased if there are sufficient funds.

*Approved summer work schedule for 12-month employees Mondays through Thursdays at 10 hours a day in order to save on energy costs.

*Approved following personnel items: resignation of Ben Blackmon, football coach and athletic director, Greenville High; resignation of Kimberly Johnson, bookkeeper, Greenville High  (effective June 30, 2011) and the following retirements–Kay Johnson, school secretary, Georgiana School (effective July 1, 2011); Linda Dunn, bus driver, Transportation Department (effective June 1, 2011) and Ethel Finklea, CNP worker, McKenzie School (Effective June 1, 2011).

*Approved 1003 (G) School Improvement Grant.