A plaque was presented to the family of Ray Kelleybrew on Monday night during the school board meeting.

Kelleybrew, one of the Lonoke School District’s longest sitting school board members, died on Oct. 10. The plaque accepted by his family recognized the time and service to the Lonoke School board over the past 18 years . In September, Kelleybrew was elected to another term on the school board. His position on the board has been filled by his son, Tony Kelleybrew.

Other recognition during the meeting were for Middle School students and staff members of the month. Eighth grade students Maggie Hill and Haven Hunter were recognized for leadership. Secretary Cindy Thaxton was recognized for her dedication to the school during her past four years of service. Sixth grade literacy teacher Calista Rowton was recognized for her hard work and enthusiasm brought to the district over the past 22 years.

Architect Clayton Vaden of Lewis Architect Engineer of Little Rock gave an update on the gymnasium construction as well as the safe room.

"Everything is running really smooth," Vaden said.

Vaden said basketball goals were added to the new safe room since the last time he came before the board. He said there was an over all savings of $62,000 between the two safe rooms.

The board members then proceeded over to the new safe room for a tour. According to Vaden, the 5,000 square foot safe room is designed to hold 1,000 people. It is made to with stand 250 mile an hour wind and is furnished with two bathrooms, a mechanical closet and storage room. Other features of the building include three basketball goals, a generator and the ability to run on natural gas. The doors of the building have been programed to unlock anytime the city tornado sirens sound. Vaden said the only thing the building still lacks at this time is rubber base boards.

The board also unanimously voted to:

- Approve the mid-year disbursement update

- Approve the club stipend schedule

- Accept the resignation of Cindy Thaxton effective Dec. 31

- Hire Laura Parks as head softball coach.

- Hire Heath Swiney as assistant girls softball coach.

Chris James and Matt Boyles were absent from the meeting. The next school board meeting will be at 6 p.m. Dec. 17 in the administration building.