Board declines to honor Crine

Published 7:13 pm Friday, August 19, 2016

A suggestion to name the Bearcat Press Box at Centennial Field after retired, long-time The Post-Searchlight sports editor Joe Crine, was made during the work session of the Decatur County Board of Education meeting Thursday evening.

Strong support for the proposal was given by board members Keith Lyle and Bobby Barber. Other members expressed reluctance to begin a process they perceived as a future problem.

Superintendent Tim Cochran said, “We typically don’t name buildings after people. It is hard to deal with subsequent people wanting to do the same thing.”

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He said he had searched for a local policy addressing the subject, but hadn’t found one. He further said, “You have a potential to start a political issue if you name this person and not the next person. It is a touchy situation.”

Barber said, “People like Joe Crine don’t come along very often.” He said Joe had spent his whole life dedicated to all BHS sports, not just football, but baseball and attended all the banquets and reported on the band. “You don’t have people like that come along very often. It is at least appropriate that we do this for him,” said Barber.

Sydney Cochran said he was not in favor of it. He said he had talked with several others whose opinions he respected, and they agreed with him that it started a precedent that would be hard to follow. “Once you open the door you have a hard time in the future.”

Lyle said, “I would like to see us do it. I can’t think of another person who has been a better spokesperson for Bainbridge schools–Bainbridge, period–as Joe.” He added, “It seems to me it would be a small token that would go a long way.”

Barber pointed out that sometimes there are people who come along who deserve recognition.….”Our Ag Center there is named after Tommy Wheeler, ” he commented. “Handle it (further requests) on a case by case basis. I don’t have a problem being put on the spot.”

Lyle said he would like to put it on the record. “Vote yes or no on the issue.”

Supt. Cochran said you couldn’t vote on it in a work session, that it was an informational item only. Instead, he suggested that Crine be invited to the September meeting and honor him with a plaque and that the board vote on the policy in open session.

“Give him a plaque next month and put on the table a policy that we don’t name facilities after anyone,” added Sydney Cochran.

After more discussion, it was decided to present Crine with a plaque at the September meeting and vote on it at that time.

The board then moved on to the open 7 p.m. meeting. The inspirational message was given by a team from Bainbridge Middle School, narrated by Principal John Wooden. He said he wanted to inspire with a message that we all matter. He then recited a poem he had written titled, “Just Notice me.” A person selected from each category (custodian, nutrition, teacher, student, parent, community leader, policeman) came forward as the team was announced. “They all matter to us, and our message tonight is simply, ‘We all matter. Take one moment to notice me’”

After reports were given by each department, the following action items were addressed:

• Renewal of the lease agreement with Southwest Georgia Community Action Council for the Head Start building in Climax

• Radio system. It was approved to honor the commitment and remain with Decatur County after lower costs were negotiated

• Approved donation of the LEW playground equipment to the City of Attapulgus, although they have decided they don’t want it now, in case they change their minds.

• 2016/17 21st Century Grant participation, currently in year 3 of 5 year grant.

• Gave a first reading on the Board Policy GAE

• Approved disposing of surplus technology equipment that no longer works

• Approved CTAE Local plan for FY 17

• Approved out-of-town/overnight field trips, mostly for FFA competitions

• Approved Valic Retirement Plans 403 (b) and 457(b) and now offer two plans

• Approved tax millage rate set at 15.948

• Approval of all personnel requests for leaves, retirements, etc.