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Newport High School May Get New College-Style Cafeteria

Newport Independent Schools plans for a whole new look for Newport High School's cafeteria next year.  

Knowing that food is important to students, especially teens, Superintendent Kelly Middleton wanted something different for the school.

"I have looked around, and Boone County has a type of food court, and Montgomery County, and I think Scott has one and Fleming County is starting one," said Middleton. "We have been talking to people who have them, and visiting the schools that have them, and they seem to be very successful."

He said the district wants the students to have more selection, and wants the atmosphere to be more like a college-type cafeteria.

"We don't know just exactly how we want it yet; the design is a work in progress," said Middleton. "We might have different seating, like some high and some low. We would like a more attractive atmosphere, maybe more like a restaurant. There could be charging stations, or maybe some televisions. We don't know yet."

He said the district will have more information as the year progresses and the plans firm up. Final plans will be brought before the board of education.  

"Right now we know we want to make it different and more attractive," said Middleton. "We want them to have healthy choices in food and a receptive atmosphere for them to consume the food."

Other notes:

The board of education passed its final budget for the 2017-2018 school year. The budget is $29,631,506 and that is down a little according to Chief Financial Officer Tete Turner, Jr.

The board also authorized payment of lease and purchase of equipment with Technology Value Financial in the amount of $20,000.

Amy Gilkison was appointed to serve on the evaluation appeals panel, and Mike Wills was appointed to serve as an alternate.

The board also approved a resolution to provide funding support to the Kentucky School Board Association up to $2,308 to represent the interests of the board before the Public Service Commission in the case against Duke Energy, which wants to raise the rates of all the schools.

District Energy Manager Grady Brown gave a report on the energy savings since he started 11 years ago. He said his goal was to save the district a million dollars, and his total this year is $2,800,000. He also told the board that in 2016 the number of CCFs, which are gas units, were 131,428, and last year the number of CCFs were 64,752.  

"Now Duke wants to raise the rates 17 percent, but they are suing to get that down," said Brown.  "You can't make everybody happy, but I try."

Changes were approved for costs of flooring replacement at Newport High School, Newport Intermediate School, and Newport Primary School, for the high school cafeteria renovations, for the front doors, and security vestibules at the primary and intermediate schools, for restroom renovations at the primary school, and for the district-wide security control system.

The board approved creating a part-time district curriculum coordinator position. The district has cut several personnel positions recently, but found that it needs this position.

Jalyn Collier (pictured) was introduced to the board as the winner of a Governor's Scholarship, a four-year full ride to college. Jalyn has a 3.92 GPA, and has a class ranking of 6 out of 96. She is involved in archery, academic team, STLP, the yearbook, and church activities. Jalyn has not decided which college she wants to attend, but she has narrowed it down to Georgetown or Bellermine.

Cindy Kohrs was presented with a gift from the board after her 21 years of service.

An alumni video was shown, featuring Matt Atkins, the high school principal, who graduated in 2000.

Written by Patricia A. Scheyer, RCN contributor