The Grove School Board learned during the Tuesday, Sept. 12 meeting, that backpacks are now prohibited in middle school classrooms.

“We haven’t had a lot of feedback,” said Jeff Gibe, Grove Middle School Principal. 

Gibe addressed the board during his principal’s report, saying the new rule - to be implemented on Sept. 19 - is "for safety reasons." 

Gibe said backpacks may be used to transport items to and from school, but the backpacks are then to be put in their assigned locker for the remainder of the day.

The policy will also help middle school students prepare for high school, which also prohibits backpacks in classrooms, he said.

The board also approved changing the school’s calendar making the last day of school May 15 and using Nov. 6 and May 16 as professional days and Jan. 2 as a day off. 

“Nov. 6 is Election Day,” said Pat Dodson, superintendent.

The board approved Dodson’s employment contract, making his raise equivalent to the state raise given to all certified staff. Also approved was giving the school’s support manager a raise, making it equivalent to the state raise given to all support staff.

In other personnel matters the board approved leave for part-time retirees employed by the district and for Kristy Martin to be compensated for work performed during her planning period.

Positions filled are:

• Priscilla Stanley, long-term certified substitute teacher.

• Christen McCoin, extra duty as site Technology Coordinator at the Lower Elementary. Joan Johnson, extra duty as sophomore class sponsor.

• Kim Hacker and Andrea Benge, extra duty as Upper Elementary yearbook co-sponsors.

• Johnnie "Mickie" Shepherd, paraprofessional.

• Kiamichi Saulter, eight-hour cook.

• Tim Atwood, head mechanic.

• Diana King, ISI Supervisor.

• Carrie Keith, Attendance Clerk

• Carl Byers, Night Watchman

The board approved the following groups.

• Lady Red Softball Booster Club

• Grove Football Booster's Inc.

• Grove Interact/Grove Rotary Foundation

• Ridgerunner Golf Booster Club

• Ridgerunner Wrestling Club

• Gir1s Basketball Booster Club

• Tip In Club (Boys Basketball Booster)

• Professional Educators of Oklahoma (Grove)

• Grove Band Booster Club

• Grove Track Booster Club

• Grove Baseball Club

• Grove Tennis Club

• Grove Cheer Booster Club

• Grove Soccer Booster Club

Also approved:

• Appropriate Math, Science and Computer credit for graduation requirements for students enrolled in the Technology Center in Afton.

• The Career and Technology Education Programs.

• Negotiations with GCTA and GESPA groups.

• Resident Teacher and Textbook Committees.

• Activity Fund accounts and their purposes.

• Officiating schedule and pay schedule.

The next meeting is 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 9 at the Grove Administration Building located on 210 S. Broadway in Grove.