PRC school board recognizes personnel, accepts grant funds

Published 4:31 pm Friday, May 14, 2021

The Pearl River School District’s Board of Trustees met Thursday evening and recognized numerous district staffers while also accepting new grant funds.

PRC’s softball coach Tony Labella was recognized by Athletic Director Chris Teal and the Board for earning his 1,000th career win as a coach this past softball season.

The victory came against Stone County on March 26. Teal said he wanted to recognize Labella knowing the coach would rather praise his players and assistant coaches.

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“Coach Labella is a winner and I have to come up here and brag about him because he’s not that kind of coach. He’s going to give (the players and other coaches) all of the credit,” Teal said.

The district’s Business Manager T.J. Burleson was also recognized at the Board meeting.

Burleson received the Outstanding School Business Official for the Mississippi Association of School Business Officials (MASBO) award for all the work he does for the district.

MASBO President Brenda Meyers presented the award and said Burleson’s work ethic and activity led to him earning the award.

“He’s a very active member on (the MASBO) board and he’s very active in planning our conferences. He’s created a working environment where employees are appreciated. The other thing that stood out is that he’s created trust between the local community and the district, which speaks to his character. He’s very deserving of this award,” Meyers said.

The Board then started moving through the agenda, which included approving several financial items.
One such item was an ESSER grant totaling $15,093 for the CTE program.

Career and Technical Education Director Kelli Herrin said the funds will be used to purchase digital resources to help students obtain national certifications such as WorkKeys, National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER), National Health Science Certificate (NHSC) and ServSafe.

The funds will also be used to purchase digital textbooks for virtual learning as well as digital work based learning simulations.

There are six skills programs offered at the high school; Culinary Arts, Early Childhood Education, Health Science, Information Technology, Teacher Academy and Welding, along with Cyber Foundations, which is a computer science course offered at the middle school.

“We are excited to be awarded this grant as all of our programs will benefit from the resources purchased,” Herrin said.

The Board also approved PRCES to have a Summer Squeeze Program for remediation in math and reading that’ll be funded using ESSER grants.

The program will run from June 14-24, Monday through Thursday and will take place from 8 a.m. to noon.

The Board also approved a Learning Recovery Program for PRCHS that’ll run from June 1 through June 24, and a summer Learning Loss Program at PRCMS from June 1 through June 18.

Following the approval of the consent agenda and some policy changes, the Board then went into executive session to discuss a personnel matter.