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April 18, 2013

School Board Approves Cost Savings Move to Purchase Used Buses


The Scotland County R-I Board of Education welcomed back an incumbent as well as the newest member to the school board at the April 11th meeting.

President George Koontz called the meeting to order and the board voted 6-0 to certify the April 2nd election results as follows: Christy Aylward 496 votes (492 -Scotland Co., 4 Clark Co.); Trinity Davis 444 votes (441 Scotland Co., 3 Clark Co.); Michelle Kleine 333 votes (333 Scotland Co.); and Matt Buford 165 votes (164 Scotland Co., 1 Clark Co.).

The board elected new officers as follows: President - George Koontz; Vice President - Trinity Davis; Secretary- Matt McKee; and Treasurer - Sam Berkowitz.

In old business, the board received a financial update for the current fiscal year. Superintendent Dave Shalley reported the fiscal year is 75% complete.

"We have received 91% of our budgeted revenues year to date and have expended 71% of the budgeted expenses." he told the board. "At this point, revenues are $694,041 more than expenses, nearly exactly the same as this time, last year."

The superintendent told the board that June is the month in the fiscal year with the most expenditures, adding that revenues will slow dramatically the rest of the year, as local revenues have already been received.

Early Childhood

A report from the district's early childhood program committee indicated that screenings have been completed and applications and being accepted for non-disabled students for the proposed pre-school program.

Shalley indicated that numbers have not yet been finalized. The next meeting of the committee is April 22nd.

Bus Bids

After choosing not to upgrade the district's bus fleet last fiscal year, the board considered options heading into the next budget season.

The district last purchased a bus in 2011 on a three-year lease/purchase.

"We have been exploring options to update our fleet," Shalley stated. "One option is to purchase four, low-mileage, 'off-lease' buses on a three-year lease program. This option allows us to get one extra bus for a little lower price than three new buses purchased each year for the next three years.

The superintendent added that the purchase of four buses allows the district to better address student transportation needs, adding one handicapped bus, while replacing two route buses and the activities bus.

The board voted 7-0 to purchase four used buses.

Technology Review

At the March board of education meeting, the Technology Procedural Evaluation was rated below average for the district.

On Thursday, the board formally reviewed the technology status of the district in more depth. Some concerns are the need for additional computers to meet testing requirements, extra space for a computer lab and options to deliver courses through electronic media.

Insurance Rates

Faced with a 12% rate increase for health insurance for employees, the board of education assigned duties to the newly formed salary committee to determine the impact on coverage options. The board voted 7-0 to approve the current plan through the consortium of public schools, with the committee to have generated a recommendation on deductibles and other options within the service.

The insurance premiums provided by the district will be $557.17 for the $1,500 deductible PPO, $403.12 for the $2,500 embedded deductible HSA or $363.91 for the $3,000 deductible HSA.

The benefit amount will be determined during salary negotiations.

President George Koontz appointed Trinity Davis, Randy Tobler and Christy Aylward to serve on the board's salary committee that will meet with staff members to build a compensation proposal.

Overnight Request

The board voted 7-0 to approve the overnight request of FFA to attend the State FFA Convention April 18 - 20.

Gym Floor

High school principal Ryan Bergeson presented a proposal to the board to address the refinishing of the high school gym floor. The report indicated that the floor has not been sanded for approximately ten years and is in need of work. Bergeson said the current floor is 36 years old and should withstand one more sanding.

He reported that if the school pays for refinishing the floor, the booster club offered to replace the wall pads and paint a portion of the gym.

The cost of the refinishing is approximately $14,000. The board voted 7-0 to take on the project.

Resignation

The board voted 7-0 to accept, with regret, a letter of resignation from Tracy La Van. Mrs. La Van is the upper level math teacher. The board wishes her well in her future endeavors.

Meeting Date

The regularly-scheduled May board meeting is the same date as Sixth Grade Promotion. The board voted 7-0 to move the meeting to May 16 at 6:30 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The board voted 5-0-2 to approve the following items on the Consent Agenda: Minutes of March 14th meeting; MSBA Membership Dues; Declare Surplus Property - a floor scrubber and washer and dryer set were declared surplus; Procedural Evaluations for Community Education, prepared by Mr. Bergeson and Mr. Pippert, and District Assessment, prepared by Mrs. Wickert.

Executive Session

The board entered into executive session and approved the following items:

Minutes from the March 14th meeting 5-0-2

Offered employment to Gianinna Bosagna for Spanish 7-0

Offered employment to Cory Shultz for Special Education 7-0

It was recommended Teresa Creek be transferred to the position of superintendent's secretary. The district will now be filling Creek's former position as high school secretary.

Each school district in Missouri is required to offer speech services to their students. This can be done by contracting, by using the speech implementer model or by hiring a licensed speech pathologist. When using the speech implementer model, the district is required to contract a licensed pathologist to work closely with the implementer, while continuing to advertise for a speech pathologist.

"This is the model our district, like many others, has been forced to use," Shalley said. "We have been advertising for a licensed speech pathologist since 2000."

The past two years the district contracted the service.

"Attending jobs fairs, we found that licensed speech pathologists are going into the private sector, rather than education, due to the increased salaries," said Shalley. "We recently found candidates that are willing to work on the teacher scale in the school setting."

The district's current case load is 67 students and growing. The superintendent recommended with the contracted service only provided two days per week next year, the district seek to employ a full-time speech pathologist to meet the increasing needs of the district.

The board voted 7-0 to offer the position to Ali Fromm. She is currently in this position at Schuyler County School District.

The board voted 7-0 to go into open session for the purpose of adjournment.


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