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School board looks to revise three policies

Revisions to three Grady County School System policies have been placed on the table for consideration and are expected to be voted on next month.
The policy regarding weapons on school campuses is one officials are looking to revise.
Grady County School Superintendent Dr. Kermit Gilliard has recommended adding language to the weapons policy that further defines a weapon as “any object used in a threatening or aggressive manner.”
According to the superintendent, student tribunal members were recently trained by Dr. Jimmy Stokes, executive director of the Georgia Association of Educational Leaders, and a situation from another school system was discussed where a battery placed in a sock was used as a weapon. Dr. Stokes suggested the local system officials review the current policy and revise as necessary.
“It was recommended that we revise our policy accordingly,” Dr. Gilliard said.
The superintendent also recommended a revision to the board’s code of ethics policy to comply with recent legislation passed by the Georgia General Assembly.
The policy currently states board members will “express opinions before votes are cast, but after the board vote, abide by and support all majority decisions of the board.”
The revised language states, “A local board of education shall not adopt or follow any code of ethics which prevents the members of such board from discussing freely the policies and actions of such board outside of a board meeting. This shall not apply to any matter or matters discussed in executive session or which are exempt from disclosure under Code Section 50-18-72.”
It further stipulates that board members will “abide by all decisions of the board.”
The board also is considering revisions to its policy on advertising/solicitation/campaigning.
According to the proposed revised policy, “Solicitation for any purpose occurring during school hours shall be at the edge of school/campus property provided location does not impede access to the property or pose a safety issue. Solicitation occurring before or after school hours, such as athletic events or other school functions, shall take place at campus locations designated by school administration. Advanced permission for any solicitation must be granted by school administration. Ex. Solicitation at Cairo High School, if approved by school administration shall take place on the grassy area located in front of the Vocational Building.
“During political seasons, we always have requests from candidates to be able to pass out items. This policy designates the area where candidates can campaign and it shouldn’t be an issue going forward,” Dr. Gilliard said.

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