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Board to research taping meetings

The Prince Edward County School Board came to a consensus at Wednesday’s meeting to conduct more research into the possibility of filming board meetings.

“There were two different issues. One was the video recording of the school board meetings, what divisions in Region 8 videotape,” said Superintendent Dr. Barbara Johnson regarding a previously asked question about videotaping. “… Currently only Mecklenburg videotapes their meetings in Region 8, and they put them on YouTube.”

She said another question asked was what would be the cost of videotaping the meetings.

“We addressed this last year. Last year it would have cost us a camera, etc. the equipment,” Johnson said. “We actually have equipment now.”

She said YouTube is free for up to 12 hours.

“There are two options, one is to videotape it and put it on YouTube — that wouldn’t cost us anything,” Johnson said. “The second option is to use a webcam, microphone, extra equipment and only have the video on our website.”

She said the software to do that would range in cost from $100-$1,000.

Farmville District 701 Representative Cainan Townsend said he felt videotaping the board meetings would address transparency issues.

“That’s a great way for us to have more parental engagement,” Townsend said. “Reading the minutes can be kind of sometimes hard to get through. Having them to watch could be useful and would increase our transparency, which is another thing I hear from some community members, and we wouldn’t have to pay anything extra for it.”