News From Terre Haute, Indiana

January 25, 2014

E-cigarettes, pay raises on agenda for Monday school board meeting

Sue Loughlin
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — The Vigo County School Board on Monday will consider a policy revision that prohibits use of electronic cigarettes on school grounds and in school facilities and vehicles.

It also will be asked to consider a 2.2 percent pay increase for several employee groups, including administrators.

The board will meet at 6 p.m. in the administration building, 686 Wabash Ave.

The proposal to ban electronic cigarettes would be added to a policy that already prohibits smoking and tobacco use. The policy revision will get a first reading and be brought back to the board Feb. 10.

At the last board meeting, Superintendent Dan Tanoos said the district has “had some challenges” related to use of electronic cigarettes. Some people have tried to use them on school grounds. The district has used other policies to stop the use of electronic cigarettes.

In May 2006, the school board did approve a policy banning tobacco use on school grounds.

E-cigarettes are battery operated products that heat liquid nicotine, derived from tobacco plants, into a vapor to be inhaled by the user.

Ray Azar, VCSC director of student services, said there have been “a few issues” this past year, with students thinking it was okay to bring them onto school grounds.

In other matters, the board will be asked to approve a 2.2 percent pay increase for several employee groups. Also, effective with this year’s health insurance premium renewal, the school district will assume up to 1 percent of any premium increase.

Employees affected are administrators, administrative clerical, deputy superintendent, education assistants, executive secretary, food service, managerial, miscellaneous classified, school protection officers, technical service and transportation.

Teachers also received the 2.2 percent pay increase and insurance benefit as part of a contract agreement reached in August.

In other matters:

• Karen Goeller, Jerry Hargis and Kathy Deal will share information about a recent Internet safety workshop.

• The district will ask permission to purchase school buses through a cooperative purchasing group.

• The district will ask permission to provide workforce development training to adults as part of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development’s WorkINdiana program. The training will take place at VCSC high schools; class offerings are contingent on enrollment.

The program allows adult education students and recent High School Equivalency graduates to take workforce certification classes for free. Program costs are paid by WorkOne.

Sue Loughlin can be reached at 812-231-4235 or sue.lough