EARLIER: Board delays approval of Collins athletic facilities

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By Lisa King

The Shelby County Board of Education decided Thursday night to postpone a decision on the proposed athletic facilities for the new Martha Layne Collins High School because of the objections of one of the members.

Board member Sam Hinkle said he did not like the plan as presented because the athletic facilities deviated from what had been originally proposed by Sherman-Carter-Barnhart, the architectural firm building the new high school.

The board was to have voted on a design submitted by the firm, who has created bidding documents to break out baseball, softball, tennis and soccer proactive areas as alternatives that will allow the board to select which pieces to be included in the construction.

The football stadium would also serve as the primary soccer field with the track circling the field.

Barnhart representative Michael L. Smith explained to Hinkle that after the plan was changed to use the school as a second high school, more extensive athletic facilities were needed.

Still, Hinkle would not be swayed. He said he was not certain that building a new football stadium was necessary.

"I don't like it," he said. "If we were to go back to the drawing board, I might feel like some of this work would be justified, but I'm not sure any of it is."

Board member Doug Butler disagreed.

"How could we consider building a new high school and not building a football field for it? I can't imagine that," he said.

Board member Brenda Jackson said the objection was not brought up at previous public hearings or workshops. Superintendent James Neihof agreed with Jackson but asked the board to set up another workshop to discuss the matter further.

On Friday, the board scheduled a special meeting for Wednesday to take up the matter.

The board also voted to purchase a Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) testing system. Rob Johnson outlined the system as a tool to help the district track groups of students or individuals for intervention or enrichment programs.

The goals of MAP are: • To assess all students K-10 • To predict KCCT score with 84 to 92 percent accuracy

• To identify new concepts and skills that are slightly ahead of what each student can do independently.

• To facilitate a reduction in the number of annual assessments in Shelby County.

The program, which costs $75,000, will replace the Scantron system currently in use.

  Other agenda items approved were the following:

• New job description for an elementary school Intervention Teacher

• Board policy to allow the SCHS band to participate in a Sunday activity on July 12

• Board policy to allow West Middle School cheerleaders to participate in a Sunday activity on July 19

• Approved a first reading of new and revised SCPS Board Policies and administrative procedures.