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CCS to charge personal refrigerator fee

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

Chilton County Schools has implemented a $50 fee for teachers who want to have a personal refrigerator in their classroom.

The fee will go into effect on Oct. 1.

The motion to create the fee passed 4 to 2 with one abstention. Board President Brian Jackson, Vice President Jaqueline Sullivan, Chris Smith and Angie Sanderson voted in favor. Keith Moore and Lori Patterson voted against. Pam Price abstained.

Funds from the fees will go into the Chilton County Schools general fund.

Refrigerators needed for medical, instructional or Individualized Education Plan purposes would be exempt from the fee.

During a work session, Moore said this would be hard to monitor and would not be fair to every teacher.

“I’m concerned about Chilton County and our teachers, they should not have to pay,” Moore said. “You cannot monitor it, and I know because the four years I was superintendent we were two years in proration we had to get them out or either lose employees and we got them out.”

According to Moore, the cost savings saved employees jobs.

He said the system spends money on plenty of other things that it should let teachers keep them.

Superintendent Jason Griffin said he had initially thought they were being monitored and were not allowed.  After he spoke with the energy manager Mickey Hardwick, he found out there were several refrigerators

“I personally don’t care if they have them or not,” Griffin said.

He said he wanted the board to be aware and all right with the energy costs.

There are between 400-450 refrigerators in the school system, according to Hardwick.

Board member Angie Sanderson said she was a teacher when the board had removed the refrigerators, and she complied.

“If we can save $15,000 a year, I am all for getting the refrigerators out, get the microwaves out or either pay for it,” Sanderson said. “There is not another career or profession that you can enter into and sit in your office or at your cubicle and have access to the amenities of home … every teacher workroom to my knowledge has a refrigerator and a microwave.”

It was also discussed that refrigerators in classrooms would need to be for the teacher’s personal use only and not for storing items for students.

Hardwick said if they were being used for food for children, they would have to be inspected by the health department.

Those using them for personal medication should also lock them.

If refrigerators are not removed or the fee paid by Oct. 1, then the teacher would be written up as being in violation.

Also during the meeting:

  • A motion to increase the pay for as needed bus routes failed.
  • Thorsby Swedish Festival received approval to use Thorsby High School.
  • A nurse preceptorship at CCHS was approved.
  • Travel for FFA teams to the National Convention was approved.
  • The Board hired a science teacher, collaborative education teacher and elementary teacher.
  • A contract for special education IEP specific services.