THOMASBORO — The Thomasboro Grade School teachers union has rejected a memorandum of understanding that would have mandated the use of sick days if they were quarantined due to exposure at school.

“The terms of the proposal diminish our existing rights,” said Julie Quinn, co-president of the Thomasboro Education Association, as she read a letter from the union to the board.

Instead, teachers want to work full time from home on those days. The rub is that, if a teacher’s entire class is not also quarantined, the district would have to hire a substitute teacher for the classroom.

The MOU was removed from the agenda.

Tentative budget

The board also approved its  tentative 2020-2021 budget, which shows an overall deficit of $126,309.

A deficit in the education fund is nothing new, but this is the first year for deficits in two other operating funds: operations/maintenance and transportation, Superintendent Bonnie McArthur told the board.

The deficits are $126,570 in the education fund, $8,639 in the operations/maintenance fund and $3,100 in the transportation fund for a total of $138,309. That total is offset by $12,000 in the working cash fund.

Overall, revenues into the operating funds are expected to total about $1.9 million and expenditures about $1.8 million.

A budget hearing is set for 5:55 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 22.

Other business

In personnel action, the board accepted resignations from Sara Glascock, assistant volleyball coach, and Sabrina Bean, head basketball coach.

The board approved hiring Jennifer Little as nurse for three days a week for the 2020-2021 school year, and Sara Glascock as junior high school teacher. Glascock will be paid as a substitute teacher at the rate of $120 per day until her license is received.

The board approved updates to seven board policies and tabled approval of 10 more to the September meeting.

McArthur said she had learned recently that nurses and janitors are required to be fit-tested for N95 masks used during cleanup after a “possibly positive COVID person.”

“If (the masks) don’t fit, you have to be full HAZMAT (gear),” McArthur said.

Plans were for the district to start school Aug. 24 with a “blended” instruction program involving both in-person and at-home learning unless parents opted for fully remote instruction.

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