Education notebook

Mills Middle site approved for clinic

Mills Middle site approved for clinic

Mills Middle School in the Pulaski County Special School District is to become the home of a school-based health clinic that will provide services to students and employees districtwide.

The district's School Board voted 4-3 last week for the clinic that will be operated by Mainline Health Services that has clinics affiliated with schools in different parts of the state.

The annex to the Mills Middle School, 1205 E. Dixon Road, has been selected for the clinic because of its availability, said Janice Warren, assistant superintendent for student services.

The district will provide the site, utilities and maintenance for the adult and pediatric care clinic, but no outlay of dollars, she added.

Students will need parent approval before attaining services from the clinic, Warren said.

Voting for the clinic were School Board members Stephen Delaney, Shelby Thomas, Eli Keller and Tina Ward.

Opponents were Wendy Potter, Heather Smith and Laurel Tait.

Fees OK'd in case on desegregation

There was an increase in activity in the long-running Pulaski County federal school desegregation case last week.

The School Board for the Pulaski County Special School District -- one of the two remaining defendants in the 41-year-old case -- approved a $15,680 payment of legal fees for the class of all Black students in the district, known as the McClendon intervenors.

The fees cover monitoring of desegregation efforts that is done by attorneys for the intervenors.

The fee agreement came during the same meeting in which the board approved a guaranteed maximum price of $37.8 million for the construction of a 2,200-seat arena, 10 classrooms, space for a Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps program and a softball field at Mills University Studies High.

In a special status report on Wednesday, district representatives told U.S. District Judge D. Price Marshall Jr., the presiding judge in the desegregation case and the judge who told the district to "square up" the Mills campus to Robinson Middle School, that the construction is expected to start March 1 and take 18 months to complete.

School program set for Engineers Week

Pupils at Crestwood Elementary School in the North Little Rock School District are among fourth and fifth graders nationwide who will participate this week -- Engineers Week -- in activities introducing them to the possibility of engineering careers.

Engineers from Garver, a multidiscipline engineering firm with offices in Arkansas -- will be visiting local elementary schools to share with students why they should consider becoming an engineer and the steps it takes to get there.

The school visits will include an engineering activity such as building model airplanes, testing popsicle stick bridges or building their own water filtration systems as a way to demonstrate to students what engineers do and their impact in their communities.

"Engineering Week is an opportunity to engage young minds with engineering as they begin to have a choice in enrolling in more advanced science and math courses," Garver Chief Operating Officer Michael Graves said in a news release about Engineers Week and the Monday morning visit to Crestwood. "Getting more eyes on engineering is integral to the future of our communities and their infrastructure."

Lee County district to vote on tax levy

Lee County School District that is based in Marianna is asking voters for a 9.6-mill property tax increase at the March 5 school election, state-appointed Superintendent Micheal Stone recently told the Arkansas Board of Education.

If approved by voters, the district's 28.3-mill tax rate for schools -- one of the lowest in the state -- will go to 37.9 mills.

The money generated by the proposed increase would go toward a new campus in the district that is in the Mississippi River Delta and is operating under state control as a way to address previous findings of academic and financial problems.

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