Farmington schools plan to win children’s hearts through training

Farmington 2022-23 School Calendar

August 15th : First day of school

November 21-25: Thanksgiving break

19 Dec-Jan 2: Christmas vacation

March 20-24: Spring Break

May 26: last day of school

FARMINGTON — Teachers at four Farmington schools will take part in a two-day training program called “Capturing Kids’ Hearts” when they return to school in August.

On April 25, the Farmington School Board approved a deal for the Professional Development Program for $89,500, which includes rebates from the Capturing Kids’ Hearts Foundation.

Capturing the Hearts of Children will offer training sessions on August 8 and 9. The program also includes additional sessions, strategic visits and individual meetings.

Superintendent Jon Laffoon said the district administration team attended a Capturing Kids’ Hearts training session and principals wanted to bring it to Farmington. Folsom, Williams, college and college staff will be able to attend the sessions.

“One of the areas our core team wanted to address was social and emotional health, emotional intelligence,” Laffoon said, adding that hopefully the program will help everyone communicate more effectively. “That’s our goal,” he said.

According to the agreement, Capturing Kids’ Hearts does not “do” events or seminars, but teaches “life-changing skills and processes.” By implementing its processes, the district will see benefits that include decreased disciplinary referrals, increased attendance, higher test scores and decreased teacher turnover, according to the organization.

The program also aims to improve parent-community relationships, develop and implement conflict resolution strategies, and build and lead high-performing teams.

The agreement includes training, resources and ongoing support for the next two years for all four campuses, Laffoon said.

The board has given approval for the district to use professional development funds for training.

The April meeting included many personnel changes, including resignations, new hires for next year, and job changes.

The board accepted the resignations of teachers Hailey Robinson, William Worthey, Tanner Feil, Robert Petten and Kendy Schroki.

The board accepted the recommendation to hire the following teachers:

• Folsom: Kaitlyn Johnston, Julie Bogle and Mackenzie Hinderberger.

• Williams: Holder of Payton.

• Farmington Middle School: Lily Hocklander and Emily Baney.

• Farmington Junior High: Leah Bunch, Caylee Wright (Grade 7 Girls Basketball Coach), Casey Moreland (High School Football Defensive Coordinator) and Ian Biggs (Boys and Girls Football Manager, Boys Basketball Assistant Coach) ).

• Farmington High: Leah Bunch, Cody Faulkner (Grade 7 boys basketball coach) and John Long.

Other changes approved for the 2022-23 school year include Mallory Cameron’s move from class teacher to high school counselor and Jay Harper from defensive football coordinator to assistant high school football coach.

The board approved the consent agenda, which included financial information for the district.

Laffoon pointed out that the district’s March-end balance of $657,030 is up from the same period in previous years. That’s up $120,000 from 2021 and more than $500,000 from March 2020, Laffoon said.

“We’re doing well financially, and we hope to continue doing so, especially with all the construction projects we have underway,” Laffoon said, referring to ongoing elementary and middle school expansions.

The board approved some changes to the salary scale for the upcoming school year. The Transport Supervisor position has been eliminated from the classified salary grid. Transportation Supervisor Jim Hendricks is retiring at the end of the year.

A new position, Director of Security and Transportation, has been added to the salary index for administrators. Earl Dean Campbell of Lonoke has been hired to fill this position as part of the staff roster.

The board also accepted a recommendation to pay staff a daily rate of $75 for staff professional development that is required outside of their contract.

In another action, the council approved recommendations to purchase laptops for staff and students.

The district will purchase 225 13-inch MacBook Air laptops and 65 mini laptops for $263,356 from Apple for teachers. These will replace current inventory and provide a cushion of 13 additional laptops, said Jarod Morrison, maintenance and technology manager.

The board also approved Morrison’s recommendation to purchase 660 Chromebooks for $227,700, pending approval of a federal Emergency Connectivity Fund grant.

Each month, the board typically approves new board policies, as recommended by the Arkansas School Board Association.

For April, these updates include a new policy for Licensed and Classified Personnel for the Code of Conduct. The change indicates that the new policy is intended to address issues received over the years of employee misconduct that may not be specifically addressed by other policies.

This new policy includes a definition of sexual harassment which means conduct based on gender that may not meet the definition of sexual harassment under Policy 3.26, but is nonetheless inappropriate in the education setting. According to the policy, examples of sexual harassment are sexual grooming; write graffiti of a sexual nature; telling of sexual or rude gestures; bullying by words, actions or name-calling; or teasing or name-calling related to sex characteristics or gender.

The policy states that any employee whose actions are found to violate the policy may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination of their contract.

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