The February 2009 meeting of the Emery County School District Board of Education was held at Cottonwood Elementary School.
Superintendent Kirk Sitterud recommended to the Board that Deanna Hansen be approved as a preschool assistant, four days per week three hours per day at Cleveland Elementary effective Feb. 3.
Superintendent Sitterud presented one policy revision and one new policy to the Board: GCJ: Professional Staff Classifications (Revised) KBA: Title One Parent Involvement (New)
Sitterud explained that the revision of GCJ adds a missing component dealing with employees who leave the District after three years of employment and then return. Upon return, they would be provisional for one year. Policy KBA is required by Title One and outlines how the District will involve parents of Title One school children.
Superintendent Sitterud explained that an adjustment is necessary for the 2010-11 District calendar so that the dates for Fall break match the dates for the UEA convention. Fall break needs to be changed to Oct. 14-15, 2010.
Business administrator Jared Black updated the Board on the status of water shares held by the School District, recommending that the Board approve the lease of water shares to municipalities in Emery County. The leases would be identical to those offered in past years, with the only change being that we have two water shares less to lease to Castle Dale City because the District donated these water shares for the building of the Children's Justice Center.
Black presented a proposal for the purchase of two school buses. He explained that the District has only one vendor for these buses which is Bryson's out of Centerville. The quote this year came in at $100,694 per bus ($201,392 total). Members of the Board reviewed the bid and asked questions to clarify aspects of the bid.
Black presented bids for the resurfacing of the running track at Emery High School. This project was approved by the Board last Spring as a capital project.
It has taken the District several months to get bids, and only two vendors submitted bids. LE Renner submitted bids for three different surfaces, the RSS-100 ($113,500), the RSS-2000 ($161,557), and the RSS-3000 ($193,600).
Mondo submitted a proposal estimating the cost of their surface-which is top-of-the-line-at $500,000 plus ground work.
Black met previously with Emery High Principal Larry Davis and the track coaches at Emery High to discuss the options. Their recommendation is to resurface with the RSS-3000 option. This would provide a better long-term solution as it has an estimated life of 25-30 years. The top coat would have to be reapplied each 8-10 years at a cost of approximately $50,000 in today's dollars.
Black mentioned that it is important in the current budget climate that he explained the funding for this project is budgeted from capital monies, which by law are specific to facilities maintenance and upkeep, and cannot be used for salaries and benefits. This is the type of project these monies are intended to be used for.
Board President Laurel Johansen presented an award plaque to member Royd Hatt for 20 years of service as a Board member. The award was originally presented to Hatt at the Utah School Boards Association convention in January and he was the only Board member in the State to receive the 20 year award this year. Other members of the Board congratulated Hatt on his years of service.
District Director of Technology Jon Crawford gave a demonstration of the new District website, which he has been working on over the last year.
Principal Dennis Jones welcomed the Board to Cottonwood Elementary School. He welcomed teacher Lori Labrum to give the Board members a SmartBoard demonstration, after which he reported on several good news items from Cottonwood Elementary.
Citing several examples of improvement initiatives, Principal Jones emphasized that school improvement is an ongoing process at his school. The PTO has been a great help to the school, assisting in a variety of ways. The student action team gives many students the opportunity to be assigned a teacher and help with any needs the teacher has, including tutoring younger students.
The faculty uses a new DIBELS board to track testing information and provide students better individual instruction. The "200" club rewards students for practicing good public actions and the school has a new motto.
Principal Jones thanked and recognized his faculty and staff as well as the Board of Education for their continued support of Cottonwood Elementary. Johansen thanked Principal Jones for his report, noting his evident enthusiasm for school improvement.
Superintendent Sitterud reported that due to recent Legislative actions, the District has lifted the freeze on purchasing, field trips, travel and teacher enhancement payments for the remainder of the school year. It is anticipated that the District will see a 2-4 percent cut in funding this year, which can be covered by transferring qualifying maintenance and operation purchases to Capital Outlay and by using the Secure Rural Schools funding that the district should receive soon.
He explained that much of the funding for this year is one-time, meaning that the District will begin Fiscal Year 2010 with a larger deficit than just the 2-4 percent. The district will know more when revenue projections are received by the Legislature on Feb. 17 and budget decisions are then made.
Sitterud also reported the performance compensation program has been cut by 75 percent, so only 25 percent of districts will receive funding for this program and he does not know if Emery will be selected or not.
Black briefly reported that if the Federal Stimulus package is passed, the District is anticipating some revenue that can be used for building modernization, renovation and/or repairs. The funding does come with requirements and the District is currently preparing projects so that they will be ready to go if and when the funding arrives.
The March school board meeting will be on March 4 at Huntington Elementary.