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BOE honors GES principal

advocate staff / Andrew garner Butler County Schools Superintendent Amy Bryan (left) and Greenville Elementary School Principal Kent McNaughton react to Randall Van Cor’s (far right) joke at Thursday night’s meeting. | ADVOCATE STAFF / Andrew Garner

advocate staff / Andrew garner
Butler County Schools Superintendent Amy Bryan (left) and Greenville Elementary School Principal Kent McNaughton react to Randall Van Cor’s (far right) joke at Thursday night’s meeting. | ADVOCATE STAFF / Andrew Garner

Greenville Elementary School Principal Kent McNaughton wasn’t planning on going to the school cafeteria for lunch during a recent fall day.

Circumstances led McNaughton to the dining room, where he instantly found himself being a big hero to GES third grader Randall Van Cor.

“I prepared my tray and the teacher in front of me was pointing at Randall, and then I saw his teacher running toward him,” McNaughton said about his good friend. “Not thinking about what was going on, I ran, too.”

Van Cor was choking on what McNaughton said was a piece of fried steak. McNaughton and teachers tried to clear Van Cor’s airway by patting him on the back. That wasn’t working.

So, McNaughton unbuckled Van Cor’s seat belt from his wheelchair and started performing the Heimlich maneuver, when the piece of meat was dislodged from the third grader’s throat.

McNaughton said he told Van Cor that the whole episode scared him to death.

“He told me thank you for saving me,” the principal said, adding that he was glad he went to lunch in the cafeteria.

For his efforts, McNaughton was given a surprise Butler County Hero Award from Van Cor at the county school system’s board of education meeting Thursday night.

“You’re the only reason why I’m wearing Bama colors,” Van Cor said with a chuckle, causing the whole boardroom to break out in laughter.

Before McNaughton received his honor, the BCSS held its swearing in and affirmation ceremony for current and new board members. The two new board members are Mike Nimmer and Brandon Sellers. Both went to school together in the county system.

Additionally, the new board president and vice president were nominated and elected. Board member Linda Hamilton was voted as the president, and Mickey Jones the vice president.

The board heard its audit report for the period of Oct. 1, 2012 to Sept. 30, 2013, and in it, the state issued an unmodified opinion, meaning that the financial statements were presented fairly.

In other business, the board:

• recognized GES students Triderius Anderson, Everette Black, Austin Brooks, MacAllister Brown, Darrius Claybourne, Jamesian Dunklin, Vivian Gates, Connor Harrell, Cyntenia Hasley, Collin Jenkins, Benyonce Lloyd, Makhea Mason, Lance McInvale, Reagan McLain, Jacob Pryor, Chloe Sawicki, Chapman Simmons, Aedan Skinner, Hannah Smith, Madison Thornton, Akeria Watkins and Brianna Yelder as Duke TIP Students;

• awarded W.O. Parmer Elementary School’s Sonya Bogan and George Warren, Greenville High School’s Cynthia Smith, Georgiana School’s LeNicki Moore, and McKenzie High School’s Areka Smith and Ronnie Dillard You Make a Difference Awards;

• awarded GES with the PerformancePlus 1st Quarter Attendance Award;

• approved the financial report;

• approved the resignation of Jerry Yancy, driver education teacher at GHS; the voluntary transfer of Theresa Posey, school nurse from GHS to McKenzie School; the hire of Porsche Maneice, speech teacher at Georgiana and McKenzie Schools, effective earlier this month, and Stacy Raines as school nurse at GHS; the resignation of Menasha Tindal, and new member LaQuanda Smith with AmeriCorps;

• permitted the BOE office to advertise for bids for WAN services;

• permitted to file for E-Rate discounts;

• permitted to advertise for bids to replace the roof at GHS;

• approved the school calendar for 2015-2016 school year;

• approved the policy and procedure revisions for the data use and governance policy, bring your own device policy, student harassment prevention policy and wellness policy;

• heard a legal update;

• recognized Geneva Scott for finishing her high school degree through the Virtual School program; and,

• went into executive session for exactly 1 hour, and 22 minutes to hold student disciplinary hearings. After the session, the board took action to reduce the punishment of three students from expulsion to sending them to alternative school for the remainder of the 2014-15 school year. The board decided to expel a fourth student.