Items concerning sports pulled from the consent agenda generated discussion at the August 2 Cumberland County Board of Education meeting.

Dan Schlafer, 9th District representative, voiced concerns over golf pros listed among the nine golf volunteers for Cumberland County High School submitted for board approval. The two professional golfers' names that appear on the list are Aubrey King and Kip Henley.

Schlafer said the BOE should know to what extent the two professional golfers are helping, saying that if they were to come in during the season as volunteers and provide golfing instruction to students, CCHS would be in violation of Tennessee Secondary Schools Athletic Assocation guidelines.

"If you want to take them on as volunteers for Cumberland County High School, I suggest we re-think that. If a child wants to go for private lessons on his own, that's totally separate," said Schlafer. "If we've got some of these big name people here listed as a golf volunteer at Cumberland County High School, that's a huge red flag, especially because we're in the middle of golf season."

Schlafer, referring to himself as the TSSAA gatekeeper for the board, said the guideline is in place to keep teams from gaining an unfair advantage over other teams through having access to instruction from professional players. The board's approval of the list containing names of golf pros as volunteers without specific notation as to how they are helping could lead to trouble, according to Schlafer.

Schlafer pointed out that golf pros are free to volunteer like anyone in regard to providing transportation or working in concession stands, so long as they're not providing instruction.

Orville Hale, 8th District representative, made a motion to approve the other two letters on the item concerning volunteer coaches and volunteers for the CCHS school band, proposing the phrase "volunteer coaches" be changed to "non-faculty coaches" on the first letter. He also proposed that the letter with the list containing the golf volunteers be brought back to the next meeting with the appropriate changes.

The motion passed by a unanimous vote. Schlafer then requested that if the schools have been in violation of the non-faculty coaches rule that the director of schools, Aarona VanWinkle, make sure no golf instruction in a group setting is being given except by the official coaches of the teams.

Another item pulled from the consent agenda related to an agreement signed between CCHS and Stone Memorial High School with Southern Media Group, Inc., where exclusive rights are given to the company to broadcast football and basketball games on a game of the week basis.

The bid from Southern Media for the exclusive broadcast rights was at $3,255. The broadcasts will be carried on the company's FM station, WIHG, 105.7 The Hog.

Hale requested that the item be taken from the consent agenda. He said he wanted to make sure the media in the Crossville area were treated properly and that the schools take advantage of all media outlets, asking if any other stations made bids to air football and basketball games.

"The media plays a very, very important role with us getting information to our students, to our parents, things like that," said Hale. "All the news media in this county has done a real good job of supporting us, and I just want to make sure that we're doing everything we can do to show them that we appreciate their help and support and that we're not basically angering them and putting them in a position where they might decide they might not want to continue supporting the schools in the manner in which they have."

Janet Brooker, principal at SMHS, responded by saying that only one station chose to bid. She said the high school principals' intentions in working out this agreement was to obtain as much revenue for the schools as possible under the circumstances, especially in light of the budget for this year.

Brooker noted that discussions were taking place with local cable companies about a delayed broadcast airing the following day, saying the radio station did not have a problem with such a situation.

After a motion was made to approve the contract, a vote was taken with seven members voting yes, 2nd District representative Robert Safdie opting to pass, and Hale voting no.

The next monthly meeting is slated for Monday, September, 10 at 6 p.m., following a policy committee meeting at 4 p.m. and a work session at 5 p.m.

The next work session concerning the county schools budget is scheduled for Wednesday, August 8, at 4:30 p.m. It will be followed by a special-called meeting in which the board will vote on passing a resolution that would convert the Cumberland County school system into a special district with its own taxing authority.