Lakeland school board unveils logo, preps for Feb. 10 meeting

By Carolyn Bahm
Express editor

Lakeland School System logoChurning waters, a distant sailboat navigating the waves and a guiding star are the eye-catching elements in the Lakeland School System’s proposed logo, provided by board member Matt Wright and unveiled at Monday night’s school board work session.

The symbolism captures the rough waters of standing up a new school district, the city’s namesake lake heritage, and a North Star that is intended to remind viewers of the new school district’s focus on its guiding principal — a focus on what benefits the child, board members said. A key phrase appearing on one logo variation is,”Learn.Grow. Lead.”

The logo will go to a vote on at next week’s regular school board business meeting. The Feb. 3 meeting was a work session, intended for discussion purposes only. Typically, the items discussed at a work session are acted upon at the next business meeting, scheduled for Feb. 10.

Superintendent’s report

Supt. Ted Horrell briefed the board on his activities, including working with the area’s five other new municipal school district superintendents on:

  • Potentially sharing services, such as business IT, purchasing, special education supervision, regular IT, transportation and nutrition. The superintendents are still evaluating whether sharing services will be cost effective.
  • Closely following the Shelby County Schools’ calendar as much as possible.
  • Evaluating the formation of a self-insurance consortium for health and dental coverage and comparing that cost to the state’s insurance. The consortium could include the school districts and even the municipalities themselves.

He also said he is continuing to work on the school system’s 2014-15 budget, “I feel very good about our ability to provide an enhanced education to the students of Lakeland based on what I’ve seen so far,” Horrell said.

Other discussion topics

  • Remodeling and minor extension of part of city hall. Horrell said the portion of Lakeland City Hall that will be used for Lakeland School System’s central office will need some renovations. He recommended using Renaissance Group of Lakeland to draw up the renovation plans and the related request for proposal (RFP) at a cost of approximately $20,000. The work itself would be a capital expenditure request to the city. Horrell said the work would include bumping out one wall to create a meeting/project room for the school district.
  • Professional liability. The school board agreed that errors and omissions coverage is needed as routine coverage for the board members, and that will cost $2,948 for them to be added to the city’s policy through July 1.
  • Potential/pending litigation. The board recessed for 10 minutes of executive session for private discussion with attorney Chris Patterson. There was no discussion of the litigation once the public portion of the meeting resumed.
  • Selection of a school board liaison to attend Arlington’s school board meetings to enhance collaboration and communication.
  • 37 policy proposals. Horrell read the titles of the proposals for the meeting records and said the list covers most of the policies required by state law. He said they would be posted on the city’s website at as of Tuesday.
  • membership. This free service is a purchasing cooperative developed to comply with state laws, and it lists vendors who have already gone through a competitive bidding process, Horrell said. The Bartlett school board also approved such a membership at its Jan. 23 meeting. See more details about BuyBoard online at
  • The school system’s survey. Horrell said more than 400 responses have been tallied to date from community members explaining their preferences, needs and other comments regarding the school district. The survey is open through Feb. 28 at