School Board to Study Accomac Primary

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By Stefanie Jackson – Accomac Primary School’s fate will not be decided until additional structural and hazardous materials studies are completed, the Accomack school board and board of supervisors agreed when they met April 25.

Tuesday night’s school board meeting included this announcement, immediately followed by a unanimous vote by the school board to hire a firm to conduct the studies. It is expected that the school board and board of supervisors each will pay 50% of the cost of the studies.

The Accomac Primary School site has been targeted as the possible new location of a school administration building, but the school board has yet to make an informed decision on the historic school and whether it should be renovated or demolished and replaced with new construction.

Every person who spoke on the matter during an April 19 public hearing supported the preservation of the historic school that first opened as Accomac High School in 1932.

Health Update

Coordinator of Student Health Services Tonya Martin reported that as of May 3, Accomack County had a seven-day average of three new cases of COVID-19 per day, and the COVID-19 community level remained low, according to the Virginia Department of Health.

As of May 3, Accomack schools had two teachers who were positive for COVID-19, one at Accawmacke Elementary and one at Chincoteague Elementary. Fifteen students were positive for COVID-19: two at Arcadia Middle, three at Chincoteague Combined, seven at Chincoteague Elementary, and three at Kegotank Elementary.

Superintendent Chris Holland recommended addressing a shortage of registered nurses in Accomack County Public Schools by increasing the school nurse salary range.

He reviewed the three previous salary ranges for school nurses. The oldest started below $30,000 and reached nearly $36,000. The next salary range was about $32,000 to $38,000. The most recent salary range was $36,000 to approximately $43,000.

Holland recommended increasing the salary range for school nurses to $42,000 to $50,400.

The school board passed the recommendation, with school board member Janet Turner abstaining, as the item was not included on the meeting agenda for discussion or action.

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