February recognized as Career Tech month

Published 9:59 am Friday, February 17, 2012

The Crenshaw County Board of Education took time at Monday’s meeting to recognize February as Career and Technical Education Month and to show appreciation for career and technical teachers in the school system.

Scott Donaldson and Brittany Walker talked about the Jobs for Alabama Graduates program (JAG), which focuses on helping students learn job and interview skills to help them find employment after graduation.

From Brantley, Mark Andrews and several of his students talked about upcoming programs with the Future Farmers of America, including the Food for America program, teachers’ breakfast and FFA week.

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Becky Stubbs and her students in the Health Occupation Students of America (HOSA) program recently competed at the state level in a knowledge bowl. The Luverne team placed third in the state.

Regina Thomas, Suzette West, Bob Williams and Rodney Wyrosdick also talked about other student activities at Luverne High School, including the yearbook, web club (which updates the school’s website), FFA projects and “the stock market game,” in which students use fake money to invest in real stocks to learn how the market works.

Tony Johnson, Michelle Mansmann and Kathleen McCoy represented Highland Home alongside a number of their students, and they talked about the yearbook, FFA projects and Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA).

During the regular meeting, the board declared unused exercise equipment from the community education department as surplus and also rejected and accepted a number of bids.

Several months ago, the school system was awarded a number of Qualified Zone Academy Bonds (QZAB) and has been using those grants to pursue heating and cooling in all three of the county’s gymnasiums.

The board approved a bid for HVAC units at a cost of $3,364 per unit.

“We’ll buy 25 to 30 of these units, which retail for around $4,000 each,” said Superintendent Randy Wilkes. “The low bid actually came in at $2,900, but that unit didn’t meet specifications.”

Wilkes said that in order to meet those specifications, major electrical work would need to be done, which wouldn’t be cost effective.

In addition to accepting bids for HVAC work on the gyms at Luverne and Highland Home, the board also rejected a number of bids that were deemed “too high.”

Under the Alabama bid law, sole bids for a project can be rejected.

“These bids are a culmination of the QZAB bonds,” said Wilkes, who added that the board will only pay $881,000 on $1.3 million worth of improvements. “Based on the action the board took, we are actually $124,000 under budget on the projects. I think all three schools will enjoy central air and heat in the gyms.”