SCCPSS school board meeting to make decisions on parent involvement, sustainability

Published: Sep. 7, 2022 at 5:23 AM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Earlier this year Governor Brian Kemp established a new law in the state aimed at parent involvement in education.

Today, the Savannah-Chatham County School Board will have to decide on how those guidelines will look in the district. The proposal will be voted on tonight.

These guidelines are referred to as the Parents’ Bill of Rights and lists out the what the parents have access to while their children are minors and in the school district.

The draft says that parents can review records that relate to their child, learn about their courses and see instructional materials for those courses. It also states that parents can object to instructional materials used in the classroom or recommended by the teacher. It also gives parents the opportunity to withdraw their child from the school’s prescribed sex education course with written objection. And lastly, decide if photographs, video or voice recordings of their students are not allowed.

All of those guidelines will be required to be posted to the district’s website if this draft gets approved tonight.

That is happening tonight at 6 p.m. during their school board meeting.

The Savannah-Chatham County School Board will also have to decide on several large spending items for the district.

One of the main focuses right now for the district is sustainability and updating their buildings to be energy efficient well into the future.

That is why today the board will be asked to approve nearly $4.5 million of ESPLOST funds to put towards replacing fluorescent bulbs with LED lights.

This phase of the project would replace lights at seven elementary schools, three K-8 schools, three high schools and two other district buildings.

“While it sounds like a lot of money but there is a payback, they literally pay for themselves in 10 years because we see a reduction in the cost of utilities,” said SCCPSS Deputy Superintendent Chief Operations Officer Vanessa Kaigler.

It’s not just lights – the campus police department has already purchased some electric vehicles and now the district is looking to buy charging stations.

Those charging stations would go at the former Port Wentworth Elementary location. Tonight, the board will also be asked to approve turning that site into the new headquarters facility for the Campus Police Department. It comes with a price tag of nearly $74,000 for additional demolition and new construction work to remodel the former school building.