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The Frankfort Independent Schools board Monday approved a memorandum of agreement with Franklin County Schools to hire a part-time bus mechanic for the upcoming year.

The cost of the contract is $24,000, which is the salary and benefits of the mechanic for FIS. It does not include the cost of possible parts needed.

All FIS board members present voted in favor of the contract, totaling four votes. Board member Becky Barnes did not attend the meeting. 

"With such late notice and all, it's probably the best we could negotiate at this time," board Chair Jina Greathouse said before the vote. 

The FIS board previously discussed the contract during its June 10 meeting and voted to continue negotiations with FCS. In that meeting FIS Superintendent Houston Barber told board members that the district had paid an average of $17,000 to $18,000 a year for labor and parts to FCS for bus maintenance, according to a six-year study. 

The FCS board unanimously approved the contract at its June 17 meeting. FCS Superintendent Mark Kopp said that FCS three mechanics perform general maintenance such as oil changes for FIS buses as well as inspections to make sure the city districts' buses are in compliance with state laws and codes. Kentucky Administrative Regulations say that all school buses in the state must be inspected each month by a state-approved inspector. FIS has nine buses, while FCS has 86. 

The FIS board also discussed participating in the Kentucky School Boards Association's Book Study as a group when the study begins on July 8. As part of the book study, KSBA members will read "The Governance Core; School Boards, Superintendents and Schools Working Together" by Davis Campbell and Michael Fullan and participate in online discussion, polls and emails about the book through September, according to KSBA's website. The book outlines how school leaders can effectively work through challenges. 

Board member Amelia Berry proposed that the school board participate in the book study, recalling that she has heard at previous conferences that effective school boards that encourage student success "take the opportunity to learn together." 

The board also went into closed session to discuss proposed or pending litigation involving the district. 

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