School board OKs personnel changes

Nick Bower, a Eureka Springs High School graduate who has been the boys head coach at Thaden School in Bentonville, was hired to take over as the head coach of the Lady Highlanders. He’ll replace Kyle Farrar, who is retiring.

Farrar, the longtime girls coach at Green Forest High School, coached the Eureka Springs girls the past two seasons.

In other personnel moves, the board approved the hiring of Amber Jester as a high school special education teacher, Morgan Myers as a licensed pre-K teacher, Tara Scott as a first-grade teacher, Eva Ortega as a second-grade teacher, Aaron Standridge as K-8 music and choir instructor and Halli Ceola as child nutrition director. The board also approved the transfer of firstgrade teacher Danielle Purvis to instructional facilitator.

In addition to Farrar’s resignation, the board also accepted the resignations of Meleia Sabb and Kelly Swofford — both of whom also are retiring — and Nic Xiong.

Superintendent Bryan Pruitt said the district still has a few positions to fill, including a middle school teacher and a speech therapist.

Meanwhile, Pruitt said the district’s staff is focused on preparing students for Atlas testing, which begins next week, “We’re trying to keep everybody focused,” he said, “making sure everybody’s ready and prepared and hopefully successful.”

The board’s slate of officers will remain the same as president Chris McClung, vice president Al Larson and secretary Gayla Wolfinbarger all were re-elected to those positions.

In other business, the board approved a bid of $99,800 from CFS of NWA to complete the floor replacement at the middle school, approved minutes and financial statements from March and approved the audited financial statements for 2022-23.

The board also voted to continue holding its regular meetings at 5:30 p.m. on the second Monday of each month.