Warren School Board to begin search for new member

By Josette Keelor

FRONT ROYAL — The Warren County School Board is beginning the process of appointing a new board member.

Kim Athey, of Front Royal, who has been board vice chair since Jan. 1, 2012, announced her resignation in a letter dated Sept. 19.

Athey, a candidate for District 26 judicial circuit judge for juvenile and domestic relations court, did not return calls for comment on Friday.

Board members are elected for four-year staggered terms, and Athey’s was due to expire on Dec. 31, 2015.

According to its unexpected term fulfillment guidelines, the Board has 45 days from Athey’s resignation to find a replacement to serve the county’s Shenandoah District, through the end of Athey’s intended term. Replacing the new board member will not require a special election after the term is completed.

With little more than a month left to find a replacement, Joanne Cherefko confirmed from the board, “We have to get something out to the community… very soon.”

The board has requested letters of interest from those interested in applying for membership, Chairperson Catherine Bower said.

“There will be an ad in the paper coming out,” she confirmed in a Friday phone interview.

Other agenda points at Thursday’s School Board meeting included a vote to approve the fiscal year 2014 school activity fund audit report, presented by Director of Finance Robert Ballentine, and a report by Assistant Superintendent for Administration Melody Sheppard on roof improvements needed for the county’s transportation building

Sheppard asked the board to approve a request for bids to repair the 30-year-old roof she said is “rapidly decomposing.”

She said standing water on the flat part of the roof has caused damages and requested changes to allow for a 3 percent slope to replace it.

Despite several attempts at remediation, she said, “There’s just no patching left.”

She also requested the removal of a chimney and addition of gutters and downspouts, suggesting the board compare prices on 50-year warranty roofs made of metal or asphalt shingle “and see which one has the best warranty.”

“We do not have this money in our budget,” she said. However, she said County Administrator Doug Stanley has agreed to consider contributing funds for building repairs.

Board members also discussed the upcoming search for a new superintendent after Superintendent Pamela McInnis retires at the end of the school year. The board will meet at 4 p.m. Oct. 14 for a public meeting and a closed session to discuss a request for proposals from qualified firms seeking to offer consultation on the search. The deadline for proposals is 3 p.m. Oct. 3.

The School Board’s next regular meeting will be at 7 p.m. Oct. 9.

Contact staff writer Josette Keelor at 540-465-5137, ext. 176, or jkeelor@nvdaily.com