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Liberty BOE rings in holidays with music and recognitions
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The Midway Middle School chorus performs ahead of the BOE meeting Dec. 11. - photo by Lainey Standiford

At the regular December Liberty County Board of Education meeting, the Midway Middle School chorus provided a selection of Christmas songs as the inspiration for those who attended on Dec. 11.

Directed by MMS chorus teacher Adrian Opper, the students sang songs like the Polar Express Medley, A Christmas Serenade, and more. After finishing, the students all received a round of applause from those in attendance.

Liberty BOE chairwoman Lily Baker opened the meeting with a recognition ceremony. Those recognized included the Wendy’s High School Heisman recipients: Michael Hagerty and Oslyn Nixon from Bradwell Institute; and Jolie Komlan and Patrick Underwood, Jr. from Liberty County High School. The Wendy’s High Schoo Heisman Award was created by Wendy’s founder Dave Thomas in 1994, according to their website.

LCHS student Douglas Wynn received first place in Agricultural Tractor and Machinery Operations at the Career and Leadership Development Event at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, according to Chief Academic Officer Patti Crane. The CDEs help students develop abilities to think critically, communicate clearly and perform effectively in a competitive job market.

Liberty Elementary STEM teachers Natalie Mondesir, 4th grade and Keva Wallace, 5th grade, received the Georgia Tech Inventure Prize Challenge, which is a capstone project for Georgia Tech’s engineering students, Crane said. GT has since expanded the competition to include grades K-12 in schools throughout the state. Both teachers classes are competing with Apple Teacher’s Swift Playground—a programming language that can be used by students on iPads, Crane continued.

“Liberty Elementary School is also one of three schools southeast of Macon to participate in the InVenture Prize video that will be aired at the college competition and on Georgia Public Broadcasting in March or April,” Crane said. “The students are working hard for the competition in January and we are so excited that our scholars will be able to showcase their ideas in front of such a large audience.”

Bradwell Institute Agricultural Education teacher Lindsay Martin won the Coastal Courier’s Best of Liberty award for Best Teacher, and Bradwell Institute won the Best of Liberty’s award for Best School. Principal Toriano Gilbert and BI faculty accepted the recognition.

The Liberty County School System also took a moment to recognize its transportation department with a video and certificates for all members. The video showcased the appreciation breakfast held for the department by LCSS.

In other school board business, the board approved all out of state travel requests and the 2019 board meeting schedule.

District 3 board member Carol Guyett raised the concern of the National Association of Federally Impacted Schools conference the board attends each year. The NAFIS fall conference conflicted with the Sept. 24 work session, Guyett said, and suggested that it be moved. The board unanimously approved to change the September work session to Thursday, September 26, 2019.

Executive Director for Student Services Dr. Kathy Moody presented to the board a recommendation for a school based Youth Mental Health therapist. Moody said that concerns were expressed by parents at a forum that a mental health counselor was needed.

Moody said LCSS sent a request for bids and received three answers, with the Fraser Counseling Center providing the lowest bid.

“The recommendation is to contract with Fraser Counseling Center for $362.11 a day,” Moody said. “The funding will come from Title IV federal program funds, and the impact is $32,227.”

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