Ed Clark, principal at Cleveland Elementary, welcomed the Emery County School Board to the school for their monthly meeting. "Welcome to the home of the Mustangs, and I would like to express my appreciation and thanks for the support you have given us this past year. The experience of being principal, despite having to juggle two other administrative areas has been mostly positive and life changing. It is truly a pleasure to be among the students again and to feel their energy and vitality as they work and learn," said Clark.
Clark went on to tell the board that Cleveland has 141 students, plus two they share with Huntington. Also there are 33 students in the preschool. Cleveland has 7.5 teachers, one resource teacher and a Title One teacher. "The teachers here put in a great amount of extra time after school and on weekends," Clark stated. "The secretary, preschool staff, support staff, custodians, nutrition specialists and instructional assistants are also very giving and supportive of the entire faculty and the needs of the school," said Clark.
Following Clark's welcome, the board requested Nolan Johnson, principal at Book Cliff Elementary and Green River High School, to make his presentation. Johnson began by requesting the boards permission to do a small amount of remodeling work in Book Cliff Elementary. These changes are necessary to accommodate the poly-com system. Poly-com is new technology that allows sites to interact with two way live video installed in learning centers for interaction between centers. This system will eliminate the need for much of the traveling between Green River and training sessions held at the district office or other long distance sites.
The remodel project will allow more privacy in the principal's office area and give more space for the poly-com. This project will require very little outlay of funds and the district crew will do the work and they are going to utilize the doors that are already in place. The remodel may only require the construction of a small wall. The board approved the project with the condition that if the cost of the project exceeds $500, Johnson is to come back to the board.
Approximately 30 concerned parents were at the meeting to inquire about the loss of the first grade aide for next school year. Superintendent Kirk Sitterud informed the group that the district has no intention of cutting the aide hours at Cleveland Elementary any more than federal mandate requires. Cleveland Elementary will lose three hours of Title One aide hours and the district has been mandated by the government to eliminate those hours.
Board president Laurel Johansen appointed Royd Hatt to head the negotiating team for the certified personnel and Johansen volunteered to head the classified personnel team.
Business manager Ross Huntington announced that bids had been opened that morning at 10 a.m. for the roofing projects for the schools. He stated that the bid had been awarded to Heritage Roofing of Bluffdale as they had submitted the lowest bid.
Superintendent Sitterud explained one action by the Utah Legislature this year was to appropriate $15 million to school districts to enhance reading programs. These funds will only be distributed if the individual districts can match the funds by raising taxes on homes. The district does not want to do that, so it is looking for other options of getting the matching funding.
Huntington explained three options to the board for acquisition of the funds. Following extensive discussion the board approved the action to participate in the low income based option of the plan. This plan will cost the district $87,945 and will receive $51,279 from the state for Emery County's portion of the allocated reading funds. Participation in this plan will allow the school district to keep the existing teaching staff.
The next Emery County School Board meeting will be held May 5 at 7 p.m. at Castle Dale Elementary.