PARKERSBURG - The Wood County Board of Education will meet Tuesday in regular session to discuss cellphones and staff training.
The board meets at 6:30 p.m. in the district's 13th and Plum streets offices in Parkersburg. The meeting is open to the public.
Several items for presentation and discussion are included in the meeting agenda, including a discussion of Policy 5514.11: Communication/Electronic Devices.
"The cellphone policy is up for review," said Sue Woodward, assistant superintendent of school services. "The (Prevention Resource) Officer Dan Miller at Parkersburg High School has been attending police training that has to do with communication and electronic devices.
"His presentation to the board is not to give a pro or con on the cellphone policy, but to give the latest training they have received on the impact of electronic devices on their ability to do their police work."
Woodward said she believes most of the presentation will focus on how students having cellphone could affect police response and procedures during a crisis. Officials have debated on whether it is better or worse for students to have cellphones during a lockdown or crisis situation at a school.
Woodward said the board also will receive a report from teacher Alicha Farley, chair of the Professional Staff Development Council for Wood County Schools.
"Every county has a Professional Staff Development Council through state law," Woodward said "Each council has an allocation of funds to be used for professional development. It is part of the legislation for the council to do an annual presentation on how those funds are being spent."
Finance Director Connie Roberts is expected to give an informational presentation on Wood County Schools' move to participate in the West Virginia State Purchasing Card Program. Woodward said the program already has been available to other state agencies but is being expanded to include school systems.
The program centers around P-Cards, credit-style cards issued by the state.
"You can designate how the money is charged," Woodward said. "You can designate the purpose and the locations and the amounts that can be used, even a window of time it can be used within."
The program also helps agencies better track expenditures and collect data on how money is being spent within the school system.
"They are just starting to phase it into the county school districts, and Connie will be giving the board an update on where we are in phasing this in here at Wood County Schools," Woodward said.