The Benton Community Consolidated School District 47 Board of Education hired Christy Curry of Tuscola as an assistant principal Tuesday evening.
Curry, who has served as department chairman in special education at Centennial High School in Champaign the past two years, starts July 1 as Benton Grade School 5-8 assistant principal.
She will fill the role vacated by Tammy McCollum — hired in January as BGS 5-8 principal to replace Jamie Neal, who is retiring at the end of the current school year.
Board members voted 6-1 to hire Curry.
Board president Dave Severin, who cast the lone "no" vote, told Curry his vote "is not against you — it's against the position."
"You did a fantastic job in the interview, and I think you will do a fantastic job here," Severin said.
Curry, who hails from the Fayette County area, said she is "really tickled" to be coming to Benton.
"I'm looking forward to it," she said.
Curry and her husband have a 15-month-old child and two stepchildren who are in elementary school.
Curry will also serve as special education coordinator for District 47. Prior to her present position at Centennial, she had been with the Mid-State Special Education co-op.
In other action, the board:
• Voted 6-0 (with Severin abstaining) to extend the contracts of 23 probationary teachers.
The board also voted unanimously to grant tenure to seven teachers: Valerie Bethel, John Cook, Tiffany Dobraski, Stacia Sloan, Dawn Hancock, Melissa Severin and Cathy Blake. (Board member Travis Severin abstained from the vote regarding his wife, Melissa.)
• Voted 7-0 to seek sealed bids for the purchase of the District 47 office and property, located on East Church Street.
Minimum bid is $100,000. Bids will be accepted until 2 p.m. April 13.
Last month, the school district purchased the former AmerenCIPS building on South Main Street in Benton.
• Voted 7-0 to switch to Blue Cross-Blue Shield for employees' medical insurance.
"The employees have done a tremendous amount of work on this," Superintendent Richard Cook said, thanking Paula Fuller for her efforts in chairing the committee and district secretary Robbie Baker for her assistance.
"We are very fortunate to be employees of this district," Cook said. "The only district that offers more is West Frankfort."
Employees opted to stay with Delta for dental coverage, Cook said.
• Voted 7-0 to allow the BGS Booster Club to use the K-2 gymnasium and kitchen for an upcoming BBQ rib sale.
The fundraiser is scheduled for April 16 and 17.