By Krystal Fowler Lifestyle Editor
The Daily Iowegian
---- — The summer boiler replacement projects will be getting underway after the Centerville School Board approved a $380,801 bid from Capital City Boiler and Machine Works out of Des Moines during their April 14 meeting.
Six bids were received and the board accepted the lowest bid. The project will replace the boilers at Howar Junior High and Centerville High School.
The board also approved contracts from Mid-Iowa Environmental for asbestos removal at those schools during the boiler replacement. The cost at Howar Junior High will be $7,100 and at Centerville High School $13,900.
The end of the school year was discussed and Superintendent Tony Ryan said that K-8 students’ final day will be May 30. High school students will finish school on June 3 because they have to make up days lost in January due to a fire at the high school. Seniors will be finished after their graduation ceremony.
A public hearing was held before the regular meeting about the 2014-2015 calendar. Discussion included two main calendar changes. The district will be changing from a 180 day calendar to a 1,080 hour schedule for the year due to new state regulations.
The other change will be the implementation of early outs every Wednesday throughout the school year to incorporate the new required professional development hours. During the 2014-2015 school year the first Wednesday of every month will have a two hour early out. Every other Wednesday during the year there will be a one hour early out. Superintendent Ryan said that the Wednesday early out policy was suggested so that parents would have a consistent day of the week for the early outs to occur on to better schedule their own lives around them.
The board eventually approved the proposed calendar during their regular meeting.
After the board began their regular meeting the Howar Junior High seventh grade TAG group came before the board to request permission for an out of state trip to Knoxville, Tenn. May 21-24. The trip would be to compete at the global level for Destination Imagination, a problem solving competition. The team placed first at the state level. The cost was estimated at approximately $750 per person. Later during the meeting the trip was approved.
Representatives of Indian Hills Community College then spoke to the board to highlight opportunities that college is bringing to Centerville as well as local high school students. They spoke about the recent focus of IHCC on the future of southeast Iowa, including a focus on retaining residents by training them for local jobs. Karen Swanson spoke about the work IHCC is doing to engage K-12 students, including eighth grade career day, dual enrollment classes and career academies. The instructor for the local health sciences academy and five students of the academy also spoke to the board about their experiences in the academy.
After the presentations, the board moved to approve the agenda and several sets of minutes from previous meetings. They then moved on to old business.
The board once again spoke about the school permit policy. Centerville Police Chief Tom Demry was on hand to speak to the board. Demry said that the permit policy is a major problem in the city and in his opinion it is being heavily abused. Demry said the board should enforce strict rules and that as of today the police can’t enforce restrictions because they don’t know what the rules are. Specifically Demry asked that the district define better what a school activity is and whether a student has to be participating in an activity to be allowed to drive to it or if they just need to be attending the activity.
Board President Rich Roos asked about how many 14-15 year olds the police catch driving in violation of their school permit. Demry said he didn’t have hard numbers but that was due mostly to the fact that the police don’t know when to issue citations but going into the future the police will begin issuing citations more frequently. Ryan also asked about how responsive Demry thought the DOT would be in revoking school permits if they received notification of violations from the district or the police. Demry said he though the DOT might be slow to respond or lenient in revoking the permits for violations.
The board approved a proposed veteran’s memorial at Centerville High School and Centerville High School principal Roger Raum said the school was planning a presentation of the memorial May 16 and that Centerville mayor Jan Spurgeon had agreed to attend.
The good conduct policy was briefly discussed but the board decided to hold off until the public hearing scheduled for April 28. They also decided to move the public hearing from the Administration Building to Simon Estes Auditorium in anticipation of a large audience.
The board moved to approve resignations for Tim Moore as bus driver and Rosanne Dunhum as elementary teacher. They then approved a transfer for Mona Berry.
Employment contracts for Gretchen Willier as special education aide specific at Lakeview, Jeremy Stufflebeem as spring concert concession stand worker and ticket taker for summer sports, Jesse Stufflebeem as spring soccer concession stand worker and ticket taker, Mikala White as substitute ticket taker, Julie Clark as Howar Junior High cafeteria server, Amber Hoffman as softball concessions worker and Cristi Clark as a special education aide specific at Howar Junior High were approved along with 55 K-12 volunteer contracts.
Discussion then turned to 28E sharing agreements with Moulton-Udell Schools. MU requested that Centerville continue sharing agreements for three positions: technology, Spanish teaching and curriculum director. MU did request to scale back the curriculum director sharing so as to purchase only 20 percent of Rhonda Raskie’s contract from Centerville. Spanish would be a 50 percent share. Both of those contracts would be owned by Centerville. The technology position, which would also be a 50 percent share would be owned by Mouton-Udell and that contract was already approved by MU’s board.
Superintendent Ryan said that the administration team was recommending that the curriculum director and Spanish teacher positions not be shared with MU. Board members Tom Lange and Michelle Moore supported cutting the ties with Moulton-Udell but board member Marty Braster disagreed. He felt a continuing relationship with MU should be a priority for the district and also wanted to help MU during their difficulties.
Braster made a motion to approve the 28E agreements for Spanish teacher and curriculum director. Board member Nick Hindley said he thought the Centerville teacher could be used to offer Spanish at lower grades. Braster disagreed saying that he didn’t think that should be a priority. Braster’s motion failed to get a second and died.
The board then began discussing the technology position. Ryan said he was recommending the 28E agreement be approved. Lange made a motion to approve the sharing agreement. Board member Bill Matkovich seconded and the motion passed unanimously.
Moulton-Udell also asked that Centerville continue sharing agreements in extra curricular activities. Activities Director Greg Fisher asked the board for guidance. The board approved the continuation of the sharing unless it would bump Centerville into a higher classification due to enrollment numbers.
The board discussed a door replacement project for the district that could cost approximately $100,000. The project would include the replacement of exterior doors for both structural and safety reasons. Braster asked about waiting until the district had a facilities plan in place. Lange and board member Joe Sharp thought the needs at the high school were more urgent and might need to be addressed this summer. Board member Bill Matkovich agreed with Braster and thought waiting for a facilities plan was a good idea.
In the end the board decided to table the door replacement project and the related engineering agreement with Hall Engineering.
Phase one of a facilities study with Estes Construction was then discussed. During phase one Estes Construction will do a study of the district’s buildings and current and future construction needs. The board approved going ahead with phase one.
Graduating seniors from Centerville High School and Appanoose County Campus were approved and board members volunteered to attend each graduation ceremony. Lange, Moore, Braster and Roos said they would attend the Centerville High School ceremony on May 17 while Lange, Braster and Roos also volunteered to be at the Appanoose County Campus ceremony May 15.
The board renewed the Iowa Association for Educational Purchasing’s annual agreement on cooperative purchasing for the 2014-2015 school year and approved board members Roos and Sharp volunteering to be on the Wellness Committee.
Activities Director Greg Fisher spoke to the board about changes Centerville’s football district has voted to make to the cost of football tickets. The football district has voted to raise prices from $5 for adults and $3 for students to $5 for both adults and students on the night’s varsity football games are played. On nights that only include sub-varsity football games, admission would be free. The Centerville board decided that in order to encourage student attendance they would not follow the recommendation and keep admission prices at all Centerville football games $3 for students and $5 for adults.
The board then heard reports from the administration team and approved financial statements before adjourning the meeting.