Brooke schools placed on financial watch list

WELLSBURG –The Brooke County Board of Education announced at Monday’s meeting that the county’s schools have been placed on the state’s financial watch list due to a loss in enrollment of 105 students.

Interim Superintendent Jeffrey Crook said each student enrolled in a school adds about $7,400 to the district’s budget.

“There are many reasons why a student leaves,” noted Crook

Stacy Hooper, board vice president, requested more information to learn if the loss in students is due to school consolidations in the county.

Other items that took place at Monday’s board of education meeting included the board voting 3-2 to purchase four new buses.

Director of Transportation Ron Staffileno requested permission to purchase four new propane powered school buses, two Blue Bird 77-passenger buses and two Blue Bird 53-passenger buses.

Hooper and Christopher Byers, board member, voted against the purchase until they received an updated status of each bus in the 33-bus fleet.

Each bus has a lifespan of 12 years, and the other three board members said they believe four buses are coming up on their end mark, if Staffileno requested four new buses.

“I assume nothing these days,” said Byers.

The total cost for the new buses is $130,949.00.

Additionally the board voted unanimously to accept Staffileno’s request to retrofit six special education buses with air conditioning, which will cost $64,612.48.

At the end of the meeting the board welcomed Interim Assistant Superintendent Corey Murphy.

“Welcome to Brooke County,” said Byers.

Crook added that the board is lucky to have Murphy as part of the team.

Murphy officially starts as interim assistant superintendent March 19.

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