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Annual review applauds superintendent, scores

By Kara Moore

WINFIELD, W.Va. — Putnam County's superintendent of schools got lots of praise from school board members Monday night.

The board completed Superintendent Chuck Hatfield's annual performance review as required by the State Board of Education in an executive session.

"We feel like our superintendent is doing an outstanding job, and we want to keep the ball rolling the way it's going right now," President William Legg said.

"If you're not moving forward, you're moving backward, and I think we are moving forward," Legg said. "And you can't stand still because everyone else is going to be improving."

Legg went on to praise the county's curriculum and Hatfield for "taking a risk" with the project-based curriculum at Buffalo High School.

Board member Jack Coyner praised Hatfield for the county's programs aimed at improving so-called "soft skills" such as work ethic and communications.

Board member and former Putnam Superintendent Sam Sentell praised the county's technological advances in the classroom like overhead projectors, smart boards, routers and streamlined support.  

Sentell also praised the county's scores on standardized tests.

"We lead on every subject at every grade level," Sentell said. "I remember in the 1990s we were down in sometimes the 25th percentile. Now we're leading everywhere."

Hatfield is entering the second year of a four-year contract approved in February 2012. He is slated to earn $160,000 this year.

In other business, the board approved splitting a full time teaching position at Poca into two half-time positions.

The full time position was to teach health and driver's education at Poca High School, but after a retirement, the county has been unable to find a candidate with certification to teach driver's ed.

Hatfield said that none of the state's colleges or universities are offering certification in driver's ed, so candidates coming out of school aren't qualified.

The plan is to hire a part-time health teacher and use a retired drivers ed teacher as a long term sub while continuing to advertise the position.

The board also voted to buy six new school buses at a total cost of $572,010.

The school board meets at 7 p.m. the first and third Monday of each month at the school system's central office in Winfield. All meetings are open to the public.


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