New school board member Karen James was appointed, by unanimous vote, to continuing serving on the Lonoke School Board on Monday night during the board meeting.

Effective as of Wednesday, James will continue to serve on the board for Zone 2, Position 1 until the next annual school board election in September 2014.

James was previously appointed in August to fill the position for the remainder of the term, following the death of her husband Chris, who served on the board for the past five years. A plaque was presented to James in honor of Chris and the years he served on the board by board president Darrell Park.

Students count as of Monday, remains steady, according to Superintendent Suzanne Bailey. Bailey said the current count is 1,819 students.

"We are staying about steady," Bailey said. "We would like it to be more of course, but we are staying about steady and that’s good."

With students numbers holding, the board unanimously approved the budget for the 2013-14 school year. Total revenue for the year is estimated to be $13,977,948.27 with expenditures of $13,948,304.30.

Some of the expenditures include salaries, janitorial services, building operation, food service and transportation cost. While the district does receive revenue through the local millage and additional state funding programs, a major portion of the district’s revenue is a result of school enrollment. $6,393 per student enrolled is received through state funding.

Each month during the school year, the district recognizes two students and two teachers from each building at the month board meeting. This month the primary school was in the spotlight. Primary school principal Rebecca Reed recognized first grade students Riley Morris and Adison Amato as students of the month. Both was said to be polite and respectful to their teachers and other students.

Classified employee of the month was first grade paraprofessional Lori Bevill. Licensed employee of the month was second grade interventionist Susan Lilly.

Also during the meeting, the board unanimously voted to:

•Approve the Arkansas Consolidated School Improvement Plan as presented.

• Approve the special education budget.

•Hire Barbara McGraw as middle school paraprofessional.

•Hire Randal Ort as HIPPY Home-based Educator

•Hire Melynda Coffey as preschool aide

• Move Angela Mays from Middle School cafeteria worker to Middle School Cafeteria Manager

• Increase the hours of contracted workers Elizabeth Gaines, Carolyn Coleman and Barbara Nicholson to six and half hours each day.

• Contract part time workers Phyllis Cauldwell and Andrea Toney for five and half hours per day; and Angela Ellington and Dianna Mack for four and half hours per day.