Soccer has become a popular sport in the county.
The Emery County School Board met in their October meeting at Cottonwood Elementary. The school board approved the addition of girls golf and boys soccer at Emery High. Next spring if girls commit to playing soccer, then girls soccer will be added as well. For now the sports will be on a trial basis.
The board encouraged the sport organizers to follow through with their commitment to gather donations for the new sports. The high school will begin advertising for a girls golf and a boys soccer coach.
The pay for the girls golf coach will be the same as for the boys golf coach at $1,100. The soccer coach will receive $1,639 the same as for baseball and the assistant $1,100.
There will be start-up costs associated with the new sports. Emery High Principal Larry Davis has talked with the region board and told them Emery will have a soccer team this spring and games will need to be scheduled for them. Emery may also play some 1A teams in soccer.
From now on board president Laurel Johansen instructed those involved with the new sports to work with Principal Davis and the athletic director.
Superintendant Kirk Sitterud thanked those involved with wanting the new sports at the high school. He said they appreciate the excitement and passion they have for the new sports being implemented at the school. They have gone through the proper procedure and process. "I concur with the board's decision," said Sitterud.
He said that in the sports survey 17 girls expressed an interest in tennis and then five girls showed up for try-outs. They have now recruited more players.
A new policy was approved for suicide prevention. The legislature has requested this be added at all schools. The policy was approved with a few word changes including someone threatening suicide not be left alone and two school personnel would accompany that person until professionals arrive.
On Oct. 15, a program will be held in Emery High's Little Theatre at 6 p.m. This will include information for parents on suicide prevention, substance abuse, internet safety and other issues. There will be a lot of information and resources to help. The youth protection seminar is open to anyone.
The school improvement plans were submitted by each school and the board approved these plans. Superintendant Sitterud said he has read each of the plans and they are really good. The schools have done a good job of writing and updating their plans.
Two employees have requested leave without pay in the future; Katie Behling and Audrey Winn.
Principal Dennis Jones gave the principal's report. He said at Cottonwood Elementary they measure everything they do by whether or not it benefits their students.
They are having success with an online reading program they were selected to participate in by the state. The students can also access the program from home for additional practice. The younger students use the program for 20 minutes four times a week and the older students for 30 minutes four times a week. The parents have been given the information to access the program at home.
Principal Jones said they place emphasis on the tracking of students and their progress. They can tell where each student needs extra help and individualized instruction is provided for that student.
The school has 25 I-pads for use and will use school trustlands money to purchase more.
The PTA is sponsoring a reading program and organizing volunteers to come into the school to help. The PTA monitors the programs and collects the calendars and students are given rewards for reading.
In faculty meetings the school is starting to work on the teacher evaluation process and faculty development.
Carol Stilson is in charge of the rewards club where students are rewarded for good behavior.
Johansen thanked Principal Jones and his staff for their hard work in helping the students at Cottonwood Elementary.
Business manager Jared Black said the full audit report will be presented next month at 6 p.m. before the regular school board meeting.
Superintendant Sitterud gave the board members a copy of the SHARP survey that is a health and risk survey. This is done every other year and surveys drug and alcohol use.
Superintendent Sitterud said, "Be aware on the SHARP Survey, that it is very comprehensive and only samples a small number. It does give some indications, but cannot be rated as completely accurate, not only due to the number of surveys, but also on whether the students answered truthfully and took the survey seriously. We use the data to work with Mental Health to address areas of concern.
"This survey is a survey for planning and not for making judgments about the community or students in general," said Sitterud.
During the public comments, Troy Winter thanked the board for their work on the sports programs. Superintendent Sitterud said he loves sports and hopes it works out.
Board member Marie Johnson thanked Mr. Winter for being very respectful and courteous during the process.