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Hope Star - Hope, AR
  • Blevins board okays resource officer

  • Heightened security will be prevalent at Blevins during the 2013-14 school year.
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  • Heightened security will be prevalent at Blevins during the 2013-14 school year. Monday night, the Blevins School Board voted to hire a School Resource Officer (SRO) for next school year. Blevins Superintendent Billy Lee told the board James Singleton, Hempstead County Sheriff, contacted him about a resource officer at Blevins. Lee and the board jumped at the chance.The SRO will be at the school during regular hours Monday through Friday and will also be at sporting events held on the Blevins campus. The district will split the SRO's salary 75-25, with the district paying 75 percent. This, Lee said, will be about $23,000 a year. The board didn't blink at the cost. “I don't see how we can't do it,” Lee said. “If we didn't and something happened …” He told the board the district should be able to pay the SRO through NSLA funds. “I'm glad he's (Singleton) being proactive in doing this,” Lee said. “It will solve a lot of problems and it will help having an officer here. It will be a plus either way.” Members of the board asked if the officer would be armed. Lee said he would be. In other business, the board approved allowing Harris Logging, out of Murfreesboro, to cut and thin timber on the district's land in McCaskill. The agriculture program, Lee said, owns the land, and the proceeds from cutting the timber will go to the school's agri program. This, he added, is how the program funds its various activities. According to Lee, the district owns three plots of land in McCaskill. He told the board there wouldn't be much profit in this cutting as there are bugs in the timber. The logging company, he added, agreed to cut the timber between the baseball and softball fields on the school's campus. The board accepted resignations from two retiring staff members – Mary Ward, counselor, and Steve Kelley, technology coordinator and Spanish teacher. It also approved hiring the district's two principals. Lee said schools are no longer required to have Spanish classes, but the course will be offered on-line for those students interested. In addition, the district will work with the Southwest Arkansas Educational Cooperative to have a tech coordinator on hand three days a week.

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