Sports complex sees first big run
The Elizabethton City School system received a $15,000 donation toward the construction of the new Elizabethton High School sports complex Thursday night.
Richard Barker presented the donation to the Elizabethton Board of Education in memory of his wife Marilynn, who died three months ago from pulmonary disease. Barker noted her 59th birthday would have been last Friday.
“Marilynn and I felt very fortunate to be natives of Elizabethton, products of the Elizabethton City School system and graduates of Elizabethton High School,” Barker said. “We felt the education we received through this system propelled us through college and on to successful careers.”
Barker said they initially had mixed emotions about replacing Brown-Childress Stadium at T.A. Dugger Junior High School, but had come to support the decision.
“We came to realize it was a progressive step forward for Elizabethton and the Elizabethton City School system, progressive for the football team, progressive for the Betsy Band, which Marilynn was an alumnus from 1969 to 1973, and for other sports teams in the community that will utilize and benefit from the facility,” Barker said.
Barker, along with other family members, presented the school system with the $15,000 donation for the construction of the new stadium.
“I wish to present a check for $15,000 toward the construction of the new EHS stadium in the memory of Marilynn, may it serve as a lasting memorial for the community Marilynn grew up in and loved and for those that loved her,” he said.
During the meeting, board members approved the 2014-2015 differentiated pay plan for the school system to meet the new state requirements.
Assistant Superintendent Richard VanHuss said the pay plan would not affect current employees who were working toward advanced degrees or training.
He added the ECS’s pay plan differed from the state-recommended plan in that it still included step increases for education and experience.
“I think it is a mistake that the state wants to eliminate that,” VanHuss said. “They want for there to be a larger focus on test scores. Our new plan moving forward will continue to acknowledge advanced degrees and not all school systems will do that.”
A policy outlining the differentiated pay plan was also approved.
The school board also approved distribution of information regarding flu vaccinations for the upcoming school year, the installation of new energy controls at East Side and West Side elementaries and tenure for Anna Hurley.
Contracts with Jabez Complete Lawn Care, Chappell’s Pest Control, Flowers Bakery, Mayfield Dairy, Sysco Knoxville, Sysco and Summers Hardware and Mary’s Salad were approved as well.