Governing Body: Prairie Hills USD No. 113 Board of Education 2.12.18

The Prairie Hills USD No. 113 Board of Education met at 5:15 p.m. for a tour of Sabetha High School. Following the tour, the board reconvened at 6 p.m. at the district office in Sabetha. Board members present were Ed Reznicek, Kathy Lippert, Kent Saylor, Jim Scoby, Leslie Scoby, Ann Shaughnessy and Jeff DeMint.

The board designated Deborah Grigsby as Clerk for the meeting, in the absence of Clerk Carol Kuckelman and Deputy Clerk Elaine Mowder. The board adopted the agenda as amended.

The board approved the consent agenda, including the following: minutes from the Jan. 8 meeting, payment of February bills of $279,546.02, January payroll of $661,129.33, Sabetha PTO gift to SHS agriculture department of $605, Frontier Farm Credit gift to SHS agriculture department of $10,000, and a number of resignations and contracts. Resignations included the following: Joyce Stallbaumer as Wetmore Elementary School teacher; David Glynn as SHS teacher; and Marlene Geyser as SHS concessions and SHS building leadership team. Contracts included the following: David Glynn as SHS principal; and Deborah Ronnebaum, as Axtell career development.

The board received written administrative reports from principals Sheri Harmer, Matt Garber, Sara Toedman, Rick Schnacker and Jayson Tynon, and Director of Student Learning Jennifer Gatz. Principals also discussed spring conferences. SHS piloted a new form of parent-led conferences.

Gatz presented to the board with some additional information about math standards, per questions from J. Scoby. Gatz said she has been working with teachers to determine how recently textbooks were adopted so that the district can get on a set textbook adoption schedule.

Superintendent’s Report

Superintendent Todd Evans presented appreciation certificates to the school board members.

Evans presented the board with the monthly expense comparison. To date, compared with the same timeframe last year, the district has spent $221,122.65 more in general, supplemental general, at risk, food service, professional development and vocational funds. During the same timeframe, the district has spent $317,725.75 less from capital outlay, and $7,768.28 less from special education.

Evans also presented to the board regarding a recent Department of Labor safety inspection report. There is work to be done in each of the buildings, especially in regard to outlets. Also, the Department of Food Service completed an inspection at Wetmore, with only a few minor adjustments to be made, he said.

The Sabetha Elementary School boiler, which is dated from 1959, has been having trouble. A representative from Honeywell came to look at it today, Evans said, and Honeywell staff will be replacing a part later next week. Evans said the cost for replacing the existing boiler would be $50,000 at the lowest end.

SHS Music Boosters

The Music Boosters purchased 155 new band and vocal chairs, and representative Dayra Menold presented a donation of $8,600 to pay for the purchase. The money was raised through two Give to Grow Match events and two taco feed fundraisers. Looking forward, Menold said, there are a few needs on which the Music Boosters will be focusing. The board approved the donation.

SHS Press Box

The board reviewed and approved the request for bids for the SHS press box. Bids are due by 1 p.m. Friday, March 2, which construction to be completed by Aug. 10, 2018.

The board also approved the agreement between the district and the Booster Club to lease advertising space on the press box.

WAC Multi-Age Classrooms

The board voted to reduce one teaching position at Wetmore Academic Center, giving flexibility in regard to how that position is reduced. See additional details in story beginning on the front page of this week’s Herald.

WAC Viability Ideas

The board discussed additional actions that could be taken to save money at Wetmore. See additional details in story beginning on the front page of this week’s Herald.

SHS Football Trip Request

The SHS state champion football team has been invited to the State Capitol by House Representative Randy Garber. A trip request was submitted for a March 14 trip. Total expense for the trip would be $936.62.

Shaughnessy asked if the trip could be taken during spring break. Evans said Harmer did check on it with Garber, who said spring break was a possibility.

Lippert motioned to approve the trip as requested, with a date of March 14. L. Scoby seconded the motion. The motion passed 5-2, with board members Lippert, L. Scoby, Rezniek, Saylor and J. Scoby in favor. Shaughnessy and DeMint were opposed.

Staff iPads

The district technology committee has decided that they would like to move forward with using iPads in the one-to-one technology plan, Evans said. Therefore, it would be time to purchase new iPads for staff members for the 2018-19 school year.

Although in the past the district only purchased iPads for certified staff, Evans said, it was discussed at an administrative meeting that instructional support staff should also have an iPad because they are doing interventions with the students.

This would be an increase of 20, and a total purchase of 160 iPads. The total cost of new iPads is estimated at $63,000. With a buyback total estimated of $10,400, the total cost would be $52,600.

The motion to purchase 160 iPads and procure buyback passed 6-1, with J. Scoby opposed.

Also at the meeting:

The board approved the 2018-19 calendar, as well as School Board meeting times and dates, and graduation times and dates.

Lippert presented a legislative update. She noted that Jeff Colyer was sworn in recently as the new Governor. In terms of legislation, there is nothing concrete at this time, she said.

DeMint presented an Education Foundation update.

The next regular meeting will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, March 12, at the district office in Sabetha.

Amber Deters116 Posts

Amber Deters is Co-Editor of The Sabetha Herald, where she has been on staff since 2005. She specializes in school board, election and legislative reporting, as well as photography and page and advertising design. Amber is a 2005 Kansas State University graduate with a degree in journalism and mass communications, print journalism sequence. She lives in Sabetha with her husband and three children.


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