Legalities

April 12, 2013 - Volume 33 Issue 19

Legalities

 

By Rebecca Tinder

Does a superintendent need to renew the statement of health, or can the board of education use the one that was associated with the superintendent’s previous contract?

We are all familiar with the Statement Of Health, executed by a license physician, certifying the health and physical ability of the superintendent.  Such statements, signed by licensed physicians, generally read as follows:

This is to certify that I have made a careful examination of _____ _______, at which time I found him/her free from tuberculosis and any contagious skin disease or communicable disease which could be transmitted to school children and with no physical disability which would handicap him in discharging the duties of an administrator in the public schools of West Virginia, as set forth by law and the regulations of the West Virginia Board of Education.

Such a Statement Of Health was primarily the result of the language set forth in W. Va. Code § 18-4-2(b), which provides, in part, that the county superintendent must submit such a statement “[b]efore entering upon the discharge of his or her dutiescertifying that a tuberculin skin test was “made within four months prior to the beginning of the term of the county superintendent; and…[t]he county superintendent does not have tuberculosis in a communicable state based upon the test results and any further study” (emphasis added).  Additionally, W. Va. Code § 18-4-2(b)(2) requires the county superintendent to repeat the “tuberculin skin test once every two years or more frequently if medically indicated.” 

Since the language requires the test to be performed “within four months prior to the beginning of the term of the county superintendent”, and the county superintendent is subject to an additional term, or contract, “of not less than one, nor more than four years”, as permitted by W. Va. Code § 18-4-1(a), a new Statement of Health would be required within four months prior to beginning the new contract with the board.