Sand Springs Board of Education approves hiring of new baseball coach

Northwoods principal Laura Hamilton is presented with a Coin of Excellence by Board of Education Chairman Rusty Gunn.

The Sand Springs Board of Education met in a regular monthly meeting Monday evening at the Sandite Performing Arts Building. 

Northwoods Fine Arts Academy principal Laura Hamilton was presented with a Coin of Excellence. "Under pressure, this girl is amazing," said Superintendent Sherry Durkee in reference to a high-speed police pursuit and shooting that occurred on school grounds last year. Prior to being promoted to Principal, Hamilton was also the site teacher of the year for the 2012-2013 school year.

The Sand Springs Pilot Club and Sand Springs Women's Chamber were also presented with special recognitions for their contributions to the school district. 

Superintendent Durkee discussed the school partnership with Daybreak for mental health services. "They've been a really healthy partner...we have a councilor in every building." She also talked about Sandites Teaming for Academic Results (STAR). School administrators will hold more frequent meetings with site representatives throughout the year.

According to Assistant Superintendent Kristin Arnold, the district doesn't expect to receive the results from Spring testing till October, while A-F report cards won't be received till March.

The district is working towards having enough chrome books to follow students from grade to grade.

Durkee also discussed the possibility of having a new sound system installed at the Ed Dubie Field House. The court was recently repaired and new LED lights are soon to be installed. "It's our premier 6A facility for three sports," said Durkee.

The Lady Sandite basketball team won a conference title and made the State Semifinals this past season while the wrestling team won both State and Dual State titles. The Boys' Basketball team fell a few games short of a winning season, but is demonstrating consistent growth and improvement under fifth-year head coach Eric Savage. The Volleyball team also had one of their best seasons in school history under Frontier Valley Conference Coach of the Year Janna Green. 

The high school is without full-time security officers on staff for the first time in years and administration doesn't have any immediate plans to hire new officers. According to Durkee, the school has gotten by fine in the past year while the previous officer missed substantial workdays due to health issues. The Sand Springs Police Department will continue to assist with security during sporting events, but for the time being the district will consider the potential cost-savings of eliminating the position for the foreseeable future.

The Board unanimously approved the filling of twenty-two positions, including that of Head Baseball Coach and Assistant Baseball Coach. Former Edmond Memorial Head Coach James Garrison will take over the reigns from retiring coach Bill Hutson. He will be joined by new pitching coach Matt Brown, also from Edmond Memorial.

James was an assistant coach at Union for two State Championship seasons. He spent one year at Edmond Memorial and amassed a 14-19 record. His contract was terminated after the season.