There will be eight candidates interviewed for the soon-to-be vacant director of schools position in Grainger County.

Seven of the candidates are employed by the Grainger County Board of Education, with one in higher education with Walters State Community College.

The Grainger County Board of Education Tuesday night discussed the parameters of the process at Tuesday night’s meeting in the Central Office.

The board used a work session before the regular meeting to discuss whether candidates would be culled down from the eight before interviews would be conducted. It was decided to interview all eight candidates over two evenings.

Order of the candidates was decided by putting the names into a bowl. Board Chairman Harold Frazier drew the names in order to determine interview times.

Candidates to be interviewed at the central office on Monday, Oct. 7 are Grainger High Principal Mark Briscoe at 6 p.m., Attendance Supervisor Kip Combs at 6:30 p.m., Student Services Coordinator Daniel Bishop at 7:15 p.m. and Supervisor of Instruction Staci Gray at 7:45 p.m.

On Tuesday, Oct. 8, CTE and Special Education Supervisor Lisa Setsor will be interviewed at 6 p.m., followed by Rutledge Elementary Principal Tim Collins at 6:30 p.m., Walters State Dean for Technical Education Tommy Sewell at 7:15 p.m. and Technology/Testing Supervisor Dr. James Atkins at 7:45 p.m.

All interview sessions are open to the public.

A special called meeting of the BOE will be held at 8:30 p.m. on Oct. 8 after the second round of interviews to narrow the field for the director of schools position.

The successful candidate will replace Edwin Jarnagin, who is retiring after 10 years as director in January.

The board also approved purchase of two three-quarter ton maintenance trucks. One of the trucks needs to have four doors in order to take prisoners to worksites, another can be a crew cab. The system is also seeking two driver’s education vehicles. According to Jarnagin, one of the 2006 model cars has 165,000 miles on it. Jarnagin had wanted to purchase the vehicles through a local dealership if possible, but the state of Tennessee’s vendor is based in Murfreesboro.

“I have always tried to buy from the state of Tennessee surplus, but the state is leasing vehicles now,” Jarnagin said. “What the state gets in is wrecked or whatever. We have one truck that will pull our trailer with our lift on it and it has more than 200,000 miles on it. We’re going to have to get some vehicles. What I don’t want to is to bid and not have you all’s blessing on trying to find something.”

Jarnagin said that he would like to buy two driver’s education cars with third row seating in case clubs have to go on a trip. Plus, a Ford Explorer or Chevrolet Traverse may not be compatible with the brake system that is required with driver’s education vehicles.

“We are in dire need of something like that (Explorer or Traverse),” Jarnagin said. “It’s just where we are.”

One of the current trucks may be sent to Washburn School for use as a trash truck.

In other action by the board, the December BOE meeting was moved from Dec. 17 to Dec. 10, due to the Christmas holiday.

J&F Mechanical will change filters on the roof-mounted air conditioner units at Grainger High School. The contract is effective from Oct 1 to Sept. 30, 2020.