- Cullman, Alabama

October 22, 2013

City schools close to finalizing drug testing policy

Set to go before board for vote in December

By Trent Moore
The Cullman Times

— The Cullman City Schools student drug testing policy is expected to go back before the board next month for a vote, after having some language clarified in the latest draft.

A small change was made to clarify the chain of custody for testing samples, and the new draft has since been sent back out to the Policy Review Committee, as is procedure. The chain of custody wasn’t as clearly defined in the original draft, so officials say they adjusted the language to provide a clear track for samples to be tested.

“We’re revisiting that policy to make a revision that we think will make it a little stronger,” school board member Suzanne Harbin said. “We hope this policy will work as a deterrent, more than anything. It isn’t meant to target anyone, it’s meant to deter our students from participating in something that’s not healthy, and we want them to be the best they can be.”

The student drug testing policy will be the first of its kind ever fully implemented for the system.

The policy applies to all students involved in extracurricular programs, and sets out three tiers of punishments for students who fail drug screenings, including community service and eventual dismissal from the applicable activity.

The policy guidelines state the initiative is a way to allow students to “demonstrate the character and leadership traits which they should possess.” The main objectives outline a need to maintain a drug-free campus, discourage drug use, reduce incidents of potential injury and protect the reputation of the school system.

The board plans to pilot the program this year, and eventually roll it out to all extracurricular next school year.

Drug tests will be given at random to students involved with extracurricular activities. A drug screening release form will now be required for students to participate in extracurriculars.

If a student fails one drug screening, he/she will be suspended from participation for 10 percent of the season; required to complete an alcohol/drug assessment program; required to complete 25 hours of school/community service and must receive a negative screening for readmittance.

If a student fails two drug screenings, he/she will be dismissed from competition for the remainder of the season; the student and parents must complete mandatory drug counseling; the student must complete 50 hours of community/school service; and must have a negative screening for readmittance.

If a student fails three drug screenings, he/she is suspended from participation indefinitely, or for a period of time determined by the administrator.

The board also:


— Lanie Williamson, CCPS Media Specialist received the Herman Moore Award LAMP Award of Exceptional Service.   Awarded annually by Alabama Library Expo to librarians and library media specialists who have rendered outstanding and exceptional service to their patrons, schools, and communities over an extended period of time.

— Caroline Johnson, CHS senior on becoming a National Merit Scholar Semi-Finalist.

— Bryant Kelly, CHS senior on receiving a letter of Commendation from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

— Clay Krout, CHS senior on receiving a letter of Commendation from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

— Tyler South, CHS senior on receiving a letter of Commendation from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

— Peyton Wilhite, CHS senior on receiving a letter of Commendation from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

 Viewed presentation from:

— Superintendent’s Report – Dr. Doreen Griffeth, Superintendent

— Reconstituted the board.

 Approved the agenda.

 Approved payments and invoices.

 Approved September 2013 Head Start expenditures/downloads.

 Granted permission for West Elementary School to surplus out of adoption state textbooks and ancillary materials.

 Permission for Cullman High School to surplus/salvage football field equipment and football training equipment.

 Approved Cullman High School’s Late Arrival/Early Release Program (JJ-IDCF) to be sent back to Policy Review Committee due to change of wording

 Granted permission to change the School Board approved Cullman High School Marching Band trip from Washington, D.C. to Orlando, FL.  This request is based upon the recommendation of Musical Destinations to relocate the trip because of the loss of public access to public venues in Washington,  D.C.

 Approved Alabama Association of School Boards 2013 Convention and Delegate Assembly, December 5-7, 2013 in Birmingham.  Board voting delegate and alternate to attend convention.

 Proposed approval of revised Board Policy Food Service Management, File: EE to be reviewed and changed.  Page 2 of 2, third paragraph entitled Pre-Payment of Meals: changed to contacts being made by PayPAMS, our online payment system.  Sending to the Policy Review Committee.

 Granted permission to adjust Cullman City Primary School’s grading policy to reflect the new Kindergarten standards based report card and align with board policy (Section I-FILE IHA-JFAA).

 Proposed approval for Headstart / CCPS RN, Judy Bentley’s salary and fringe benefits to be paid in full by local funds.  Currently 75% are being paid from Head Start funds and the remaining 25% from local funds until restoration of the government grant.

 Granted permission to change the December payroll date from December 31, 2013 to December 20, 2013.

 Proposed approval of McPherson Companies as the lowest responsible bidder for the Diesel Fuel and Gasoline Bid # 08-20-13-01. Proposed approval of 2013-2014 Textbook Committee Members for Cullman City Primary School, West Elementary School and Cullman High School.

 Granted permission to enter into temporary part-time employment contract for custodial services with Susan Peinhardt at Cullman High School

I.   Permission for baseball boosters to construct, at their expense, a protective block wall in the batting enclosure at Cullman High School.

 Approved personnel considerations:

— Tranfer: Sharon Wilson, transfer from bookkeeper at Head Start to executive secretary at the Central Office effective October 16, 2013.

— Transfer: Lindsay Brannon, transfer from fifth grade teacher at East Elementary School to Reading Coach at East Elementary School effective October 28, 2013.

— Leave of absence: Cindy Pass, Library Media Specialist, NBCT at East Elementary School, beginning November 12, 2013 through December 20, 2013

— Modification of employment:

     3.  Modifications of Employment: Kimberly Swann, modification of work hours per day from CNP Worker 5 hours at East Elementary School to CNP Worker 6.5 hours  (JV 13-058).

— Employment: Janey Carol Ray, Bookkeeper, East Elementary School beginning October 16, 2013.

— Employment: Brittany Parker, Extended Day Teacher at Cullman City Primary School retroactive from September 16, 2013.

— Employment: Chelsea Cupp, Extended Day assistant at Cullman City Primary School retroactive from September 16, 2013.

— Employment: Terri Abbott, CNP Secretary/Bookkeeper, Central Office retroactive from October 9, 2013; e. Stanley Harper, Custodian, East Elementary School beginning November 1, 2013.

— Supplements: Approval of the 2013-2014 Supplement Schedule.

— Supplements: Michael Wilhite CHS Key Club Sponsor declined supplement.