Mason County Schools Superintendent Rick Ross recently received a mostly exemplary evaluation.
The evaluation, that was presented at a recent board of education meeting, measured seven areas including strategic leadership, instructional leadership, cultural leadership, human resource leadership, managerial leadership, collaborative leadership and influential leadership.
Ross received exemplary on strategic leadership, cultural leadership, managerial leadership and collaborative leadership. He received accomplished on instructional leadership and human resources leadership.
One comment from a board member, relating to strategic leadership completed Ross on the work he has done with career pathways.
“Increased career pathway options for MCHS students is leading to vast opportunities, including the aviation student highlighted who earned a scholarship and guaranteed job with Delta,” the board member said.
Other comments complemented Ross on the $20,000 in teacher/staff scholarships to further their education, students now being recognized with superintendent awards, creating an atmosphere that draws quality teachers and staff, improving salary schedules, working to keep the student/teacher ratio down and saving the district money throughout the last several years.
Ross said he appreciates the confidence the board members have in him as superintendent.
“Much has been accomplished over the last six years in partnership with the board, staff, community and most importantly, students,” he said. “The confidence the board of education has in me means the world. It allows me to focus 100 percent on making school meaningful for all students. I am blessed to be here.”
In addition to the superintendent evaluation, the board approved the first reading of a juul, vaping and tobacco policy.
Ross said the policy is necessary, because the juul devices are being marketed to children.
“The Juul device is marketed as a trusted tech device to children. In truth it is a device that can lead to a lifetime of addiction. It delivers as much nicotine in one dose as a pack of cigarettes. It is not safe and is illegal for student use,” he said.
According to Ross, all e-cigarette devices will be confiscated.
“All e-cigarette devices will be confiscated and sent for testing with law enforcement. They can be loaded with TCH or worse,” he said. “They will not be returned under any circumstance. Consequences will be applied based on the testing result. Any distribution of these devices will be treated just as we would distribution of drugs. Expulsion is a very real possibility. We ask for parents to be diligent in monitoring use of this highly addictive practice.”
According to the policy, all vapes and juuls will be tested at Mason County High School. If any test positive for tobacco products, the device will be taken from the student and not returned to the student or parent.
The consequences for using said products will include: first offense will be a three-day out of school suspension, the second offense will be a five day out of school suspension and the third offense will be a 10 day suspension and alternative school placement.
Distribution of tobacco and vaping products consequences include a 10 day out of school suspension and a 30 day alternative school placement.
Juul and vaping product testings that results in a positive test for any illegal substance will result in a 10 day out of school suspension and 30 days alternative placement with possible expulsion.
A first reading of the same policy was approved for Mason County Middle School, as well.
Other items discussed at the meeting included:
— A motion to delete “reach-in freezer” equipment from a direct purchase order.
— A motion to accept a proposal for special inspections at the high school and Career Magnet School by Consulting Services Inc. of Kentucky at a cost of $19,350.