UPDATE: The Washington County Budget Committee approved a motion to send the interlocal agreement between the county, the Washington County Board of Education and the Town of Jonesborough for a Jonesborough K-8 School. The committee also approved putting $250,000 from the county’s capital fund toward the design of the project.
By MARINA WATERS
The county’s Health, Education and Welfare Committee has approved the Town of Jonesborough’s proposal to build a Jonesborough K-8 school. Now, the county’s budget committee will get a chance to talk over the plan at it’s meeting set for Wednesday, Sept. 11, at 9:30 a.m. at the courthouse.
The Health, Education and Welfare Committee approved the plan on Thursday, Sept. 5, after the Washington County Board of Education unanimously passed the proposal with a few changes at a called meeting on Aug. 29.
The plan, which includes a dual-lease agreement — one for the school building and another for the athletic fields and recreational facilities — all on a 48-acre site on North Cherokee Street in Jonesborough, saw a few changes from the school board, which will be up for discussion for the county. Those changes include:
• Three BOE members on the design committee (along with a Jonesborough administrator/teacher)
• Money from the sale of the school’s properties will go into a dedicated education fund and will first pay for the new school’s furniture, then will be put towards the school system’s five-year maintenance plan
• The BOE will select the furniture
• After the school is built, the board will have four years to sell the front half of the Jonesborough Elementary School property, Jonesborough Middle School (minus the track, which will become a town park), and the Midway building
• The BOE does not include Asbury in the list of properties it agrees to sell
• The Jonesborough school district includes the Town of Jonesborough, but leaves flexibility for the board to change boundary lines as needed in the future
• Meetings regarding the school (design, costs, etc.) will be kept public
• The BOE attorney will have input in the development of a contract with the architect
If the budget committee approves the plan, the commission will discuss the proposal at its Sept. 23 meeting at 6 p.m. at the George Jaynes Justice Center in Jonesborough. To see the county’s meeting agendas and calendar, go to http://www.washingtoncountytn.org/.