Matt Johnson at BOE

Reeltown football coach Matt Johnson addresses the school board on how much coaches work.

The Tallapoosa County Coaches Association requested an athletic supplement increase of $135,000 at the Tallapoosa County Board of Education meeting Monday.

Dadeville athletic director and football coach Richard White presented to the board a handout of how much the schools want and what’s needed for coaches. White suggested because the county commission passed the 1-cent sales tax bond renewal in August, the board could find extra money to pay for the supplements.

“During that 25 years I have not seen one increase in coaching supplement,” White said. “The last coaching supplement was in 1995 that was head basketball coaches went from $1,960 something to I think $3,500.”

White said the coaches association lobbied for the 1-cent sales tax bond renewal to get more funds.

“This is probably not going to help me but it’s going to help these guys and gals behind me here who are going to be here for the long haul and future coaches who are going to one day be hired,” White said. “We want to get quality people in our county and the only way we can get quality coaches and teachers in our county is to pay them a supplement or pay that is comparable to people around us and we are below that with other schools our size. I feel like it’s time that we make a move to do that.”

Horseshoe Bend football coach and athletic director Jeremy Phillips said when he started at the program this year and called other coaches his age in other counties they said they would get $3,000 to $4,000 pay cuts with his salary if they took his job.

“I know at Horseshoe Bend we work long hours; I know these other guys do too,” Phillips said. “If you really look at what we’re getting paid for the hours we’re putting in it’s less than 5 cents an hour.”

Reeltown football coach and athletic director Matt Johnson added to have competitive programs coaches work weekends and run summer programs for their teams and should be paid accordingly.

“So every one of our head coaches we meet at the end of the year and we create a summer calendar and they work throughout the summer and don’t get paid a dime for it,” Johnson said. “And it’s a minimum of three days a week. I think our lowest attended program is three days a week in June and some programs go June and July with strength conditioning.”

Horseshoe Bend assistant baseball coach David Caldwell also commented these coaches are also teachers.

“The thing that I’m impressed about them is they’re committed,” Caldwell said. “The least we can do is to pay them for it.”

Superintendent Joe Windle said the language on the sales tax renewal is restrictive but promised to bring up looking at other ways to look for $135,000 for supplements at the next work session scheduled Oct. 1.

“The question is not can we afford to do it over the next few months,” Windle said to White before the other coaches added their comments. “The question is where do we take the money from and what parts are freed up out of the 1989 1-cent sales tax that had no restrictions on it?”

School board member Carla Talton said the board appreciates the coaches’ efforts.

“We asked you all the last time you came to lobby commissioners and help us get the 1-cent sales tax extended,” Talton said. “I know a lot, if not all, of you did that and we appreciate your efforts to help that happen.”

In other action, the school board:

• Unanimously approved the 2019-20 fiscal year budget.

• Unanimously recognized September as Attendance Awareness Month.

• Recognized Windle for being invited to join the National Superintendents Forum. Windle said he is turning down the invite to save money for the county.

• Heard from former bus driver Frank Childers on insulating the bus shop.

• Unanimously approved paying bills and the monthly financial report.

• Unanimously approved renewing the Alabama Trust for Board of Education 2019-20 general liability/errors and omissions liability fund coverage insurance for board members and employees.

• Was updated on using eBoard, a platform for school board members to use and see past records, by director of student services and community public relations Casey Davis.

• Unanimously approved out-of-state and overnight field trips.

• Unanimously approved adding a procurement policy to purchasing policy and procedures.

• Unanimously approved a change in policy to change the kindergarten enrollment date to the student’s 5th birthday on or before Sept. 1.

• Was updated about changing capital projects funded by the 1-cent sales tax. County commissioner T.C. Coley said anytime there is a proposed change in the scope of the work, the scope gets approved by the school board first before the commission. 

• The board also approved the following personnel moves:


• Greg Cobb, regional leadership support specialist through the Alabama Reading Initiative


• Jared Chambers, technology technician for county schools

• Scott Fuller, law and public safety instructor at Edward Bell 

Purchased service agreements

• Lisa East, Dadeville Elementary School (DES) intervention teacher

• Laurie Williams, DES intervention teacher

• Brucille Peoples, Reeltown Elementary School (RES) intervention teacher

• LaTonja Henderson, RES parent engagement facilitator

• Amy Scott, Horseshoe Bend School parent engagement facilitator

• Jan Ledbetter, Reeltown High School parent engagement facilitator

• Wendy Fineberg, DES parent engagement facilitator

• Madison Brooks, Edward Bell paraprofessional

• LaDonna Powell, RES reading intervention teacher