January 2020
Staff eNews
From the Superintendent
Thanks to everyone for completing the Studer Employee Engagement surveys. As superintendent, I value your comments and ratings very much. Your feedback is an important part of our continuous improvement process. We will continue to review your suggestions!

The Central Office Team will be introducing a new initiative during the month of February entitled, “Let’s Do Lunch!” I’m asking all CO employees to eat lunch in the Cafe with either one or both of their schools adopted this year. Please watch for them coming to a table near you.

I’ve received several questions regarding attendance and when we would dismiss due to illness. The general rule is attendance would need to drop in the 80% range across the district and remain at that level for at least three consecutive days. I monitor attendance rates every day through DPP. While some attendance has dropped, we continue to be above 90% on average. Prior to closing schools, we would consult with the Hopkins County Health Department. I encourage you to review the importance of hand washing with your students and take preventative measures in your classroom.
Cookin' for the Kids
Several Hopkins County Schools’ representatives took part in the Cookin’ for Kids event that benefited local youth by way of Hopkins County Family YMCA and Madisonville Rotary Club. Superintendent Dr. Deanna Ashby, assisted by secretary Kathy Gonzalez, presented smoked BBQ sliders. Albert Jackson, special education teacher at Hopkins County Central High School, prepared strawberry brownies with strawberry glaze. Robert Carter, director of engagement, equity, and school support, organized the event through his role as Madisonville Rotary Club president.
W2s and 1095 Forms
W2s were processed and mailed Wednesday, Jan. 29. Affordable Care Act 1095 forms will be issued to employees by mail on or before the March 2 deadline.
CENSUS 2020
The 2020 Census Invitation Letter will soon be sent out to households. The online participation link will be specific to each address that receives an invitation to respond. The earliest date that will be available is March 12. The census may also be completed on paper forms or by phone.

Please encourage everyone to complete the Census. Results determine the amount of federal funding distributed to states for programs that impact schools, students, and families.


Raptor Visitor Management System Starts at High Schools
Hopkins County Schools will begin to pilot the Raptor Visitor Management System at both of the high schools starting Monday, Feb. 3. Visitors will be required to have their IDs scanned instead of signing a paper visitor log. Use of this system will strengthen the district’s program of campus safety for students, faculty, and staff.

The Raptor system will check to ensure that registered sex offenders are not entering our buildings. A visitor’s badge will not be necessary for those who visit schools to drop off an item in the office, pick up paperwork, or check in/out a student. Parents will be notified as the system goes live in additional school buildings.
Celebrating the 100th Day ... and the 101st!
School Board Budget
The Draft Budget was approved at the Jan. 13 Board of Education meeting. KRS 160.470(6) (a) requires that each local school district “examine detailed line item estimated revenues and proposed expenditures for the subsequent fiscal year” on or before Jan. 31 of each calendar year. Due to the many uncertainties surrounding the state budget, the proposed draft budget for FY 2020-21 is, in effect, a “rollover” of the 2019-20 Working Budget. The Tentative Budget will be presented in May for Board approval and staffing changes will be better estimated at that time. The Working Budget will be finalized in September.

Compared to last year's draft budget, the general fund increased by $1.2 million; $956,688 of this is from our beginning balance carryover. This is the highest beginning balance we've had since 2010. We contribute this beginning balance to managing our operating expenses and cutting costs at the administrative level. We are not expecting this type of carryover growth at the end of this school year due to the 2% salary increase.

Major items we are watching for this budget process include SEEK allocations, legislative changes, adjusted average daily attendance, and state pensions. This draft budget includes a decrease in SEEK revenue of $417,984 to reflect the current tentative calculation. This number is based off the Adjusted Average Daily Attendance (AADA) of 5,947 students. This preliminary draft budget doesn't include our federal and state grants. These funds play such a major role in the public education process, however due timing and uncertainty Kentucky schools do not include these amounts in the draft budget. Salaries are the biggest part of our budget and the staffing process for the 2020-21 school year is just now starting. These factors will all be adjusted during the tentative and working budget process. 
Big Smiles Dentistry Serves Kids
Dentist and assistant examine child's teeth
Hopkins County students are sure to have “Big Smiles” after receiving dental care from the program bearing the same name. The district contracted with Big Smiles for the first time this year to offer dental care in our schools. They are visiting the district in January and February.

Using advanced portable dental equipment, the program sets up a “dental office for the day” inside the school building. Each child seen by the Big Smiles dentist receives a complete dental exam, x-rays, cleaning, fluoride treatment and sealants as necessary. In addition to preventive care, Big Smiles offers in-school restorative care, going beyond traditional sealant programs, helping to ensure children have healthy smiles after seeing the in-school dentist.

There is no cost to the district. Plus, there are no costs to the parents whose children are on Medicaid and KCHIP. Most private insurances are accepted, and a low self-pay option is available for those without insurance.

Parents interested in having their children seen through Big Smiles may go to www.myschooldentist.com or ask the school for a permission form.

Photo by Brandon Buchanan, The Messenger
Art of the Teacher Exhibit
The Anne P. Baker Gallery at Glema Mahr Center for the Arts features an exhibit of works created by several teachers in Hopkins County Schools.
The exhibit, entitled "Art of the Teacher," will be displayed from Jan. 12-Feb. 21, 2020. Participants include art teachers Melanie Hofmann, Jordan Harper, Katie Riggs, Julie Cabiness Oakley, and Amanda Gamblin, and school counselor David Gilkey, a former art teacher.
Admission is free, and everyone is invited.
Transportation WOW Award

Eric Nelson, driver, and Angela Juarez, monitor, are our January recipients for the transportation WOW (Winners on Wheels) award. Eric and Angela are a great team on route 53! They have a heart for others, kind attitude, and safety mindset that is demonstrated daily towards their students and team members. We appreciate their dedication and hard work!
Check Out Employee Discounts
Information on a variety of discounts available to Hopkins County Schools’ employees is listed on the district website. Invitations to shop at the Columbia Sportswear Employee Store in Henderson will also be posted on this page. The newest invitation runs from Feb. 7-March 1. We will maintain a standing link to the Employee Discounts webpage in the Staff Newsletter.
#LionChaser / #GiantSlayer Awards
A group of eight Grapevine Elementary School staff members stepped up to help deliver Backpack Blessings to 42 students when the district was out of school Oct. 24-25 because of a water main break. Backpack Blessings is a Family Resource Youth Service Center project that supplies easy-to-fix food for students who might otherwise do without food while out of school over a weekend. Those honored are Patricia Matheny, Kaitlyn Young, Barbara Stoltz, Kristen Maxberry, Amanda Sarles, Nicole Pace, Tonja Simms, and Billy Ward. These staff members made sure students’ needs were filled, and are definitely #LionChasers!
Browning Springs Middle School students Melody Kincaid and Mya Latimer were honored with the #LionChaser / #GiantSlayer Award at the Jan. 13 Board of Education meeting. The pair responded enthusiastically when 6 th -grade writing teacher Erin Shaw asked her Leadership students to take on a “passion project.” They collected baskets such as quilts, blankets, lotion, fuzzy socks, puzzles, and card games for residents of a local nursing home. They collected more than 100 donated items and also visited with the residents. What a great project!
Ensign-Bickford Donation Supports STEM
Representatives of Ensign-Bickford Foundation Inc. presented a donation to James Madison Middle School at Monday’s Board of Education meeting. The donation is $10,000 per year for the next three years. The school plans to use the money for STEM and technology. Thanks to Ensign-Bickford Foundation for supporting #TeamHopkins!
Thanks to our Board Members!
As Kentucky observes School Board Recognition Month in January, Hopkins County Schools is joining in the celebration. Dr. J.W. Durst, Steve Faulk, Bobby Fox, John Osborne, and Susanne Wolford are among the more than 850 school board members in the state’s 173 local school districts being recognized for their service.

This is the perfect time to thank school board members for serving in a role that has become increasingly complex,” said David Webster, president of the Kentucky School Boards Association and chairman of the Simpson County school board.

“Members of the Hopkins County Board of Education are responsible for making decisions aimed at ensuring that every child in their district has a chance to be successful both in school and in life,” Webster said. “To do that, members oversee the budget, keep up with changing education laws and policies, and spend hours on professional learning and state-mandated training.”
Wolford Elected Board Chairman
Susanne Wolford was elected as chairman of the Board of Education during the Jan. 13 meeting. She succeeds J.W. Durst in that role. John Osborne will be vice-chairman.
School Calendar Set for 2020-2021
The first day of school for students in the 2020-2021 school year will be Thursday, Aug. 6 under the calendar set by Hopkins County Board of Education. Staff will start earlier that week, with #TeamHopkins Day on Aug. 3, Opening Day on Aug. 4, and Professional Development on Aug. 5.

Other highlights include fall break, Oct. 5-9; Professional Development, Nov. 2; Election Day, Nov. 3; Thanksgiving Break, Nov. 25-27; Winter Break, Dec. 21-Jan. 1; Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Jan. 18; Presidents Day, Feb. 15; Professional Development, March 15; Good Friday, April 2; Spring Break, April 5-9. Last day for students is currently set for May 19 with closing day for staff on May 20.

School closings because of inclement weather will result in adjustments to the calendar."
County Spelling Bee Winners
The top spellers from each elementary and middle school in the Hopkins County School District congregated January 24, 2020 at Madisonville Community College to compete in the annual Hopkins County Spelling Bee.

Held in MCC's Beshear Education Center building, the annual bee began with a practice round and concluded with this year's winner, Eli Vincent from West Hopkins School, spelling the championship word, incompatible . James Madison Middle School student Josie Morris placed second.

This year's spelling bee participants were Khloe Phillips, Browning Spring Middle; Emily Royal, Earlington Elementary; Tamia Haynes, Grapevine Elementary; Tyler Rose, Hanson Elementary; Josie Morris, James Madison Middle School; Bryleigh Jordan, Jesse Stuart Elementary; Brandon Fowler, Pride Elementary; Zoe Long, South Hopkins Middle; Chloe Rich, Southside Elementary; Kaylee Brandon, West Broadway Elementary; Eli Vincent, West Hopkins School.

During the event, MCC Professor/IECE Program Coordinator April Grace served as the official pronouncer. MCC Professors Nancy McClearn and Andrea Deal served as judges. MCC and MSU Assistant Professor and Education Coordinator Dr. Karen Mackey served as coordinator of the event. MCC's KEA-SP chapter provided the awards.