Oxford school board bans electronic cigarettes
by Eddie Burkhalter
Jan 21, 2014 | 5571 views |  0 comments | 66 66 recommendations | email to a friend | print
OXFORD — Oxford City Schools on Tuesday added electronic cigarettes to a list of banned items for students as use of the new technology continues to grow.

The Oxford Board of Education voted Tuesday to add the ban on electronic cigarettes to the school system’s code of conduct for students. The devices typically vaporize flavored liquids containing nicotine, in a tank or chamber. Users then inhale the vapor, like smoke from a cigarette.

Oxford schools Superintendent Jeff Goodwin said many school boards are beginning to address the growing use of imitation tobacco products such as electronic cigarettes.

“And there’s no telling what all in the next couple of years, but we’re addressing this now,” Goodwin said.

The provision added to the code of conduct bans the “possession and/or use of tobacco products, electronic cigarettes, smoking paraphernalia or any other oil, liquid or wax product which can be used in electronic cigarettes or other smoking paraphernalia.”

“I’m sure we’ll be amending this more as the years go by,” Goodwin said.

Goodwin also announced that construction of the 35,000-square-foot career technology building at Oxford High School is 35 percent complete.

“They’ll be installing the second floor the first week in February,” Goodwin said.

Work began in late July on the $4.4 million building, which will house the school’s business marketing, graphic arts, health occupation, science and technology programs, as well as a pre-engineering classroom and robotics lab.

The career tech building is expected to be complete this summer. The district entered into a funding agreement with the Oxford City Council in April for an $8 million bond issue to pay for the career tech building and for an expansion of the media center at Coldwater Elementary. Plans for the Coldwater expansion are being drafted, Goodwin said.

In other business the school board:

- Nominated teachers Tammy Davis of Oxford Elementary School, Angey Morgan of Oxford Middle School and Deedee Henderson of Oxford High for the 2014 Alabama Teacher Hall of Fame at Jacksonville State University.

- Announced Oxford Elementary teacher Malinda Barker received the Greater Calhoun County Area Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities “Educator of the Year” award.

“She is an expert in our state,” Goodwin said. “In terms of knowledge of children with disabilities I have not met anyone more knowledgeable than Mrs. Barker.”

- Revised an out-of-state travel request to the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont, Tenn., for Advanced Placement biology students at Oxford High. The students will travel in a district school bus instead of a chartered bus.

Staff writer Eddie Burkhalter: 256-235-3563. On Twitter @Burkhalter_Star.
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