Kathryn Dentato

Recurring theme of school board citizen comments: ‘We are worth it.’

School Counselors

Ruth Owen – As a certified school counselor, she expressed concern over the number of open positions, the shortage of interns, and the increasing complexity of work they do. Owen referred to the mental health needs of students as discussed by Ms. Patel, and the amount of work they are assigned, including the registration and enrollment of students in the PHSC Dual Enrollment program, as discussed by Schlum-Hughes. 

PHSC articulation agreement places burden on high school guidance counselors

Vicki Schlum-Hughes – Discussed dual enrollment (DE) and asked the board to refrain from accepting the articulation agreement with PHSC for now. For the last two years, enrolling students in the program is a paper/pen method which takes time from students requiring guidance or mental health assistance. She illustrated the amount of work involved with a stack of papers about 12 inches high that had been recently completed, stating that this was only a portion of applications. “We are not employed by PHSC. We should not have to take away (from) our students to do their work.” 

Informal school board meeting addresses communication, absenteeism and Superintendent search

Board chair Susan Duval opened the meeting and said she would allow everyone time to speak, but not necessarily in order. Linda Prescott was first to turn on her light.

Discussion on Committees and Communication

At the organizational board meeting, the members selected their committees. Prescott suggested that with all the committee meetings, it would be a good idea to brief each other on the general topics discussed, possibly by way of a report.  

Code violations increase in 2018, without full time enforcement

City Manager Mark Kutney introduced Bill Geiger, City Development Department, to discuss code enforcement. He provided a brochure of the most common code violations to council members. Geiger stated the brochure is shared with residents who have questions. He also gave a memo to the council members, broken down into categories, to show the different issues code enforcement has dealt with over the past year, along with a comparison to fiscal year 2017. Fiscal years begin October 1 and end September 30. 

Funding for sewer projects needed in Brooksville

City Manager Mark Kutney introduced Shawn Foster and Sam Wagoner from Sunrise Consulting, the firm that represents the interests/needs of Brooksville and Hernando County to the Florida legislature. In addition to the information presented in the agenda packet, Kutney stated that council members were provided maps, additional funding costs, etc. The project packet is virtually the same as last year. 

Rock Ridge Phosphate Trail: a promotional opportunity for Brooksville

by KATHRYN DENTATO

Hernando Sun Writer

A promotional website has been created, http://visitrockridgetrail.com, which features nearby areas with a historical link to phosphate mining, accessible by bike through the Withlacoochee State Trail and Good Neighbor Trail.  Historic places, activities and natural areas of Brooksville, Dunnellon, Inverness and Floral City are featured in an online map. A blog to showcase local businesses is planned.  Representatives from the City of Inverness spoke to the Brooksville City Council on the possibilities for joint marketing.