Sept. 19, 2022 Board Meeting

20 Sep

Proposed MHS Stadium project presented, public hearing set for Oct. 4 – watch recording
Exciting proposed upgrades at the Marshalltown High School Stadium complex were presented at the Monday, Sept. 19 Marshalltown School Board meeting. 

Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte outlined two major portions of proposed work:

  • Construction of a Tornado-Safe Team Room through a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grant: If approved, the grant would cover all eligible costs related to installing that facility. In addition to providing a safe location for players and spectators during inclement weather, the Tornado-Safe Team Room would provide improved athletic facilities, including locker room space. 
  • MHS Stadium complex upgrades using SAVE state sales tax revenue: Proposed work includes widening the athletic field and converting its surface from natural grass to turf. Additional proposed areas to be upgraded include the stadium’s bleachers, press box area, and scoreboard, as well as the lighting, sound, and digital timing systems.
    The board set a public hearing on the use of SAVE funds for the proposed project for 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 4 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave.
Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte, left, presents the Superintendent’s Star Award to longtime Marshalltown Performing Arts Center Auditorium Manager Al Paxson, right. Paxson is stepping down from the position after nearly three decades of exceptional service to the Marshalltown CSD.

Longtime Auditorium Manager’s service recognized – watch recording
Al Paxson is stepping down from his position as Marshalltown Performing Arts Center Auditorium Manager after 27 years, and his exceptional service was recognized with a Superintendent’s Star Award on Monday evening.

Dr. Schutte said Paxson played a pivotal role during his long tenure at the Auditorium, including overseeing numerous successful fine arts events.

MHS XLP teacher Susan Fritzell, left, and senior student Leticia Herrera, right, share their experiences from this year’s National History Day Summer Institute.

MHS student-teacher team share highlights from National History Day Summer Institute – watch recording
MHS Extended Learning Program (XLP) teacher Susan Fritzell and senior student Leticia Herrera shared their experiences from this year’s National History Day Summer Institute. As part of the Summer Institute program, the duo researched local World War II veteran Eugene Stegmann and visited Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.

Fritzell and Herrera were one of 15 student-teacher pairs nationwide to be chosen for the program. They were commended by the board for their selection to and participation in the NHD Summer Institute.

Certified staff lane changes gain board approval – watch recording
Dozens of MCSD certified staff were rewarded for their commitment to furthering their education at Monday’s board meeting.

The board approved lane changes for 42 certified staff members, each of whom dedicated time and resources to earning additional graduate-level credits or a full graduate-level degree. Those staff members will earn higher pay as a result of their continuing education.

Student School Board Representatives (from left) Jaxson Eisenbarth, Natalie Andrade, Abraham Madrigal Farias, and Yessenia Alvarez Zamora provide an update to the board.

Student School Board Representatives’ report – watch recording
Student School Board Representatives Yessenia Alvarez Zamora, Natalie Andrade, Jaxson Eisenbarth and Abraham Madrigal Farias shared an update on student activities and events on Monday evening.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the District by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved on Monday, click here.

Policies:
First Reading – 

  • 704.4 Gifts, Grants and Bequests (approved, second reading waived)

Initial Review – 

  • 501.7 Student Transfers Out or Withdrawals (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.8 Attendance Records (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.9 Student Absences-Excused (will come back for a first reading)
  • 501.9-E1 Request for Remote Learning Form (marked as reviewed)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Tuesday, October 4, 2022 (rescheduled from original date of Monday, Oct. 3) at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

Sept. 6, 2022 Board Meeting

7 Sep
MHS math teacher Angela Pierce, left, and Principal Jacque Wyant, right, discuss the educational benefits of the new PRISMS virtual reality platform. A container for a VR headset can be seen at center.

Virtual reality education platform, interactive playground gain board approval  –
The Marshalltown School Board approved the purchase of two exciting, cutting-edge digital learning platforms at the Tuesday, Sept. 6 regular meeting.

  • PRISMS, a cutting-edge virtual reality education platform, will supplement Marshalltown High School students’ math education. The platform includes VR headsets, which will allow students to interact with the mathematical concepts they are learning about in their real-world classroom.
    “What I really liked about [PRISMS] was the fact that it was laser-focused on using the application to supplement math curriculum and, eventually, science curriculum,” said Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte.”
    MHS Principal Jacque Wyant and math teacher Angela Pierce said they had positive, engaging experiences while testing the PRISMS platform. The high school and Miller Middle School will each receive one set of PRISMS VR headsets. (Watch recording)
  • Also purchased on Tuesday was the state-of-the-art Lu multimedia projection system, which is set to be implemented at the Lenihan Intermediate School gym later this fall.
    Using a dual projector system, the LU platform will allow students to play interactive, educational games during P.E. class. The platform offers other curriculum-related activities, which could allow Lenihan’s P.E. teachers and teachers of other subjects to collaborate in exciting new ways. (Watch recording)
  • Federal COVID learning loss funds will be used for both of these purchases.

Coaching staff approved for new MHS Esports & Girls Wrestling programs – watch recording
The board approved stipends for two new coaching positions at Tuesday’s meeting. One will take the helm as the Esports Coach, and the other will lead as Girls Wrestling Assistant Coach.

Both of these exciting programs are brand new for the 2022-23 school year.

Student School Board Representatives (from left) Jaxson Eisenbarth, Natalie Andrade, Abraham Madrigal Farias, and Yessenia Alvarez Zamora introduce themselves at their first meeting of the school year.

New Student School Board Representatives introduced – watch recording
New Student School Board Representatives Yessenia Alvarez Zamora, Natalie Andrade, Jaxson Eisenbarth and Abraham Madrigal Farias introduced themselves to the school board at Tuesday’s meeting. 

The student leaders will share regular updates with the board throughout the 2022-23 school year.

Miller XLP teacher Ann Jackson speaks about the Society for Science Advocate Program

Miller XLP teacher recognized for selection to Society for Science Advocate Program – watch recording
The board recognized Miller Middle School Extended Learning Program (XLP) teacher Ann Jackson on Tuesday. Jackson was one of 84 teachers nationwide to be selected to the Society for Science Advocate Program.

“I wanted to increase my skills and be a better advocate for all students, and especially those who are underrepresented,” she said, adding the Society for Science is providing training and resources to aid her advocacy efforts.

Increased substitute teacher pay gains board approval – watch recording
An increase in daily substitute teacher pay – from $130 to $140 – gained board approval Tuesday evening. In addition to the increase in base pay, substitute teachers will be able to earn an even higher pay rate – $160 per day – for substituting for 50 or more days in any one school year.

Learn more about this and MCSD’s other exciting incentives here!

Details shared on MCSD Mentor Program – watch recording
Director of Instruction Shauna Smith and Mentor Program Curriculum & Professional Development Leader Julie Thede presented on the District’s Mentor Program for new certified staff.

Thede said the purpose of the Mentor Program is to ensure new teachers have as successful an entry into the education profession as possible. The program focuses on providing a welcoming climate, encouraging collaboration, and improving through self-analysis and reflection.

Director of Instruction Shauna Smith, left, and Mentor Program CDPL Julie Thede, right, present on the District’s Mentor program for new certified staff.

2022-2023 board and superintendent goals approved – watch recording
The 2022-23 Superintendent and Marshalltown School Board goals were approved on Tuesday, each with three areas of focus. See the full goals document here.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved on Monday, click here.

Policies:
First Reading – 

  • 501.15 Open Enrollment Transfers-Procedures as a Receiving District (approved, second reading waived) 

Initial Review – 

  • 501.4 Entrance – Admissions (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.5 Attendance Center and Program Assignment (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.6 Student Transfers In (marked as reviewed)
  • 704.4 Gifts, Grants, and Bequests (will come back for a first reading)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 19, 2022 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

Aug. 15, 2022 Board Meeting

16 Aug

To watch the full board meeting discussion of the below items, please click the “watch recording” link next to each item. The links will take you to the start of each of the below agenda items/topics from the board meeting recording.

District Lead Nurse Stacey Tool-Crawford presents updated communicable disease procedures for the 2022-23 school year.

District Lead Nurse presents updated communicable disease procedures – watch recording
The Marshalltown School Board heard an update on the District’s communicable disease procedures for the 2022-23 school year at the Monday, Aug. 15 regular meeting. The procedures include what students should do when sick, as well as guidance on returning to school after an illness. 

District Lead Nurse Stacey Tool-Crawford, who presented the updated procedures on Monday, also shared information specific to COVID-19. The District will continue to support following CDC and Marshall County Public Health recommendations, including:

  • Frequent hand washing and social distancing to the extent possible.
  • Staying up to date with COVID-19 vaccines and boosters.
  • Getting tested if you have symptoms. If you are at high risk for severe illness, talk to your healthcare provider about other precautions.
  • Wearing a mask indoors in public when community COVID transmission levels are high.
  • Following CDC recommendations for isolation and masking if you have symptoms or test positive for COVID-19 – MCSD Guidance for COVID-19 isolation.

Tool-Crawford said MCSD will continue to stay up-to-date on guidance from local, state, and CDC public health guidelines going forward.

MHS Principal Jacque Wyant discusses updated information in the 2022-23 MHS Student Handbook.

Board approves updated 2022-23 MHS Student Handbook watch recording
An updated Marshalltown High School Student Handbook gained board approval on Monday evening. MHS Principal Jacque Wyant said the handbook includes an updated bell schedule to reflect four lunch periods, a closed campus lunch period, and additional narrative regarding search and seizure.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved on Monday, click here.

Policies:
Initial Review – 

  • 501.3 Compulsory Attendance (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.3-E1 Attendance Requirements (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.3-E2 Attendance Regulations-table (tabled, will come back at a later meeting)
  • 501.15 Open Enrollment Transfers-Procedures as a Receiving District (will come back for a first reading)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022 (due to Labor Day on Monday, Sept. 5)  at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

Aug. 1, 2022 Board Meeting

2 Aug

To watch the full board meeting discussion of the below items, please click the “watch recording” link next to each item. The links will take you to the start of each of the below agenda items/topics from the board meeting recording.

Four Student School Board Representatives approved for 2022-23 – watch recording
Four Bobcat high school students were named Student School Board Representatives at Monday’s meeting, including Natalie Andrade, Abraham Madrigal Farias, Jaxson Eisenbarth and Yessenia Alvarez Zamora.

These four student representatives will attend regular Marshalltown School Board meetings throughout the 2022-23 school year, and will provide updates on student life and school events. Congratulations to this year’s student representatives!

New District logo gains board approval – watch recording
The Marshalltown CSD will sport a new, refreshed logo after Marshalltown School Board action at the Monday, Aug. 1 regular meeting. The approval came after the logo (see image below) was presented by Communications Director Adam Sodders in July.

The new logo was created by Juicebox as part of the District’s new website project, and was recommended with input from student, parent, staff, and community branding perspectives. Importantly, the new logo will only replace the logo featuring the District’s name alongside a star – no changes will be made to other MCSD logos, including the Bobcat logo.

RACOM HR Manager Carrie Loney, right, accepts an MCSD Career Readiness Partner award from Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte, left.

RACOM recognized as MCSD Career Readiness Partner – watch recording
For many years, RACOM has been a vital partner in the Marshalltown CSD’s Bobcat Ready efforts, and the company was recognized with an MCSD Career Readiness Partner Award at Monday’s board meeting.

“RACOM has been a long-standing partner in providing human capital and volunteer service, as well as financial support, for many of the different STEM and CTE initiatives that we have going on in the District,” said Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte.

For the full story on this incredible MCSD partner, click here!

Tech purchase supports high-quality learning – watch recording
The board approved the purchase of Go Guardian Teacher, a premium feature of the District’s filtering software, at Monday’s board meeting. Director of Technology Amy Harmsen said the platform will allow teachers to customize their students’ online browsing environments during class time, including setting parameters specific to the subject being taught in the classroom.

Board sets 2023 legislative priorities – watch recording
Five key 2023 MCSD legislative priorities gained board approval on Monday evening.

The listed priorities emphasize the importance of sufficient, timely, and equitable funding of public schools. Also advocated are comprehensive community mental health systems and additional resources to help address the pandemic-related student achievement gap.

The full, detailed 2023 MCSD Legislative Priorities document can be seen here.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved on Monday, click here.

Policies:
First reading – 

  • 401.13 Staff Technology Use (amended, second reading waived)
  • 501.14 Open Enrollment Transfers-Procedures as a Sending District (amended, second reading waived)
  • 507.2 Administration of Medication to Students (amended, second reading waived)
  • 507.2-E1 Authorization for Asthma or other Airway Constricting Disease Medication or Epinephrine Auto-Injector Self-Administration Consent Form (amended, second reading waived)


Initial Review – 

  • 500.1 Student Rights & Responsibilities (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.1 Resident Students (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.2 Non-Resident Students (marked as reviewed)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 15, 2022 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

July 11, 2022 Board Meeting

12 Jul

To watch the full board meeting discussion of the below items, please click the “watch recording” link next to each item. The links will take you to the start of each of the below agenda items/topics from the board meeting recording.

New District logo recommendation presented – watch recording
Communications Director Adam Sodders presented a proposed new MCSD logo on Monday evening. The logo was created by Juicebox as part of the District’s new website project, and was recommended after gaining input from student, parent, staff, and community branding perspectives.

Sodders noted that the proposed logo is intended only to replace the current logo featuring the District’s name alongside a star – no changes are recommended for other MCSD logos, including the Bobcat logo.No action was taken on the item on Monday – a vote will take place during an upcoming regular board meeting. 

Mechdyne supports MHS Esports program with generous donation – watch recording
An excellent community partner is again showing support for Bobcat students and programs. Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte thanked Mechdyne Corporation – the Marshalltown-based technology company – for a generous donation of $2,500 toward the brand new MHS E-Sports program.

The E-Sports program is among a slate of new, high-quality opportunities for MHS students coming this fall.

Food Service Director Lynn Large shares an annual departmental overview, including data on meals served last school year and upcoming changes for 2022-23.

Food Service Director delivers annual report, 2022-23 adult meal price set – watch recording
Director of Food Service Lynn Large shared a departmental overview on Monday. Her report included statistics on the number of meals served, the processes followed by the Food Service department, and changes coming in the 2022-23 school year.

The board also approved an increased adult meal price of $4.13 for the upcoming school year. Large noted that the new price was necessary to remain compliant with the USDA’s Paid Lunch Equity Tool and federal regulations.

Another record-breaking Bobcat Golf Fundraiser celebrated – watch recording
MHS Activities Director Ryan Isgrig highlighted this year’s successful Bobcat Golf Fundraiser. Turnout and fundraising records were broken for the second year in a row, and Isgrig thanked the hundreds of community members and alumni who participated. For full information on this year’s Bobcat Golf Fundraiser, click here!

Wireless authentication software purchase approved – watch recording
Connecting to the MCSD wireless internet network will be faster and easier, while remaining highly secure, after board action on Monday.

Director of Technology Amy Harmsen said the Aruba ClearPass software will speed up the wireless authentication process for users, with fewer errors and better compatibility with digital devices. She also said the long-term cost of using the software will be reduced compared to the  current authentication system.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved Tuesday, click here.

Policies:
First reading – 

  • 804.5 Stock Prescription Medication Supply (adopted, second reading waived)

Initial Review – 

  • 401.13 Staff Technology Use (will come back for a first reading)
  • 402.2 Child Abuse Reporting (marked as reviewed)
  • 501.14 Open Enrollment Transfers-Procedures as a Sending District (will come back for a first reading)
  • 507.2 Administration of Medication to Students (will come back for a first reading)
  • 507.2-E1 Authorization for Asthma or other Airway Constricting Disease Medication or Epinephrine Auto-Injector Self-Administration Consent Form (will come back for a first reading)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 1, 2022 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

June 20, 2022 Board Meeting

21 Jun

To watch the full board meeting discussion of the below items, please click the “watch recording” link next to each item. The links will take you to the start of each of the below agenda items/topics from the board meeting recording.

MHS Activities Director Ryan Isgrig, left, and Director of Technology Amy Harmsen, right, share their recommendation for the purchase of a new display board for the MHS Pool. The board approved the purchase at Monday’s regular meeting.

New MHS aquatics display board purchase approved – watch recording
An exciting upgrade is coming to the MHS Pool! The Marshalltown School Board approved the purchase of a new aquatics display and scoreboard from Daktronics Inc. at the Monday, June 20 regular meeting. 

The new display will enhance the MHS aquatics area for Bobcats Swimming student-athletes and fans alike. MHS Activities Director Ryan Isgrig said the new display installation will follow other improvements to the pool area, including ceiling and lights upgrades, as well as the installation of a new air conditioning unit.

We would like to thank the Booster Club and local donors Brendan & Kristina Dulaney, Colette Lothe, Dr. Thomas Rinehart, Edith Hodges-Cornwell, James & Candy Hunt, Jeff & Ann Isgrig. Joe & Janelle Carter, Katherine Sinning, Madilyn Abernathy, Matt & Kimberle Schryver, Paul & Frances Hermanson, and Ryan & Stephanie Isgrig for their donations to this project!

Students’ National History Day exhibit featured in special showcase in D.C. – watch recording
MHS students Yessenia Alvarez Zamora and Leticia Herrera were recognized on Monday after their 2022 National History Day (NHD) national contest exhibit – “La Huelga: The Struggle That Earned Farm Workers Rights” – was competitively selected and featured in a virtual showcase at The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C.

Congratulations to these incredible students!

Board supports new MHS e-sports program with purchase of computers – watch recording
An exciting new e-sports program is coming to Marshalltown High School next school year, and  the board supported the program by approving the purchase of six gaming computers on Monday. Participating students will be able to use the high-quality computers to practice and compete in e-sports beginning this fall!

Danielson, right, and Johnson, left, share an update on “Scherzo.”

Update shared on “Scherzo” artwork, community invited to unveiling event – watch recording
Marshall County Arts & Culture Alliance Executive Director Amber Danielson and artist Stephen T. Johnson shared an exciting update on Monday – “Scherzo,” a colorful, music-inspired sculpture created by Johnson, has been installed outside of the Marshalltown Performing Arts Center. 

A “Scherzo” Reveal Celebration is scheduled for  5-7 p.m on Thursday, June 30 at the Marshalltown Performing Arts Center (east side of Marshalltown High School, 1602 S. 2nd Ave.). Danielson encouraged community members to join the celebration, which will feature a ribbon-cutting ceremony and live music performed by MHS students and the Marshalltown Municipal Band. More information can be found here.

“Scherzo” stands in front of the Marshalltown Performing Arts Center.

New K-12 music curriculum approved – watch recording
New music curriculum materials for K-6 general music and 5-12 performance music are coming to MCSD after board action on Monday. 

The curriculum approved for K-6 general music was Quaver, while the MusicFirst and SmartMusic platforms were approved for performance music at grades 5-12.Both programs were presented and discussed at the June 6 regular board meeting.

Digital Mapping service agreement moves forward – watch recording
The board approved an agreement with Collaborative Response Graphics (CRGs) to perform site-specific digital mapping of District buildings at Monday’s meeting. 

Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte said the service will support school safety by enabling better communication in the event of an emergency. Monday’s recommendation came after consulting with Marshalltown Police Department Chief Mike Tupper. 

The MPD paid for digital mapping at MHS to allow school officials to become familiar with the service. MHS was the first building in Iowa to use the CRGs digital mapping services.

District Lead Nurse Stacey Tool-Crawford presents the annual student health report on Monday evening.

Annual student health report presented – watch recording
District Lead Nurse Stacey Tool-Crawford presented the student health report for the 2021-22 school year on Monday evening. 

Tool-Crawford provided an overview of the important role school nurses play at each school building, as well as student health data collected throughout the year. She also discussed the schools’ health plans and state health requirements.

Contractor selected for Fisher Elementary walking path project – watch recording
Another step was taken on the Fisher Elementary walking path project on Monday evening. The board voted to approve a contract with Tim Nichols Construction to install the new path. 

ELPA 21 assessment overview shared – watch recording
MCSD English Language Learner & Migrant Program Coordinator Rachel Inks reported on the 2021 ELPA 21 assessment results at Monday’s meeting. Each year, the ELPA 21 assessment measures English-learning (EL) students’ proficiency in the language, as well as progress toward proficiency.

Employee handbook and appendices approved – watch recording
The board voted to approve the 2022-23 MCSD employee handbook and appendices on Monday. The documents had been presented by Director of Human Resources Dr. Nora Ryan at the June 6 regular meeting. The handbook covers the following groups: 

  • Nutrition professionals
  • Buildings and Grounds staff
  • Paraeducators
  • School bus drivers and monitors
  • 10- and 12-month secretaries, administrative assistants, bilingual attendance specialists, youth counselors, and hourly staff in the Business, HR, and IT departments.
  • Staff who are part of the Marshalltown Education Association (MEA), including teachers, school counselors, librarians, school nurses and special resource personnel.
Manis shares a Ladders to Learning update.

Ladders to Learning program data presented – watch recording
Anson Elementary Principal Ronnie Manis shared updated data from the Ladders to Learning program on Monday evening. Ladders to Learning focuses on helping elementary students fill learning gaps by meeting targeted, individualized goals.

Agreement for financial statement audit services approved – watch recording
A three-year contract with Hogan-Hansen for financial statement audit work gained board approval on Monday. The contract will cover fiscal years 2022-2024.

2022-23 Marshalltown School Board regular meeting schedule set – watch recording

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved Tuesday, click here.

Policies:
First reading – 

  • 200.3 Responsibilities of the Board of Directors (adopted, second reading waived)


Initial Review – 

  • 405.5 Licensed Employee Work Day (marked as reviewed)
  • 405.6 Licensed Employee Assignment (marked as reviewed)
  • 405.7 Licensed Employee Transfers (marked as reviewed)
  • 405.8 Licensed Employee Evaluation (marked as reviewed)
  • 804.5 Stock Epinephrine Auto-Injector Supply (marked as reviewed)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, July 11, 2022 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. It will be the only regular meeting in the month of July, and available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

June 6, 2022 Board Meeting

7 Jun
Chromebook technician Jose Ramirez (left), MHS Dean of Students Dan Terrones (center), and District Server Specialist Sebastian Ramirez (right) discuss plans for providing e-sports opportunities to high school students.

Board approves exciting new MHS student activities – watch recording
There will be even more unique, high-quality activities available to MHS students starting in the 2022-23 school year after Marshalltown School Board action at the Monday, June 6 regular meeting, including:

  • E-sports (electronic sports): Students will have the opportunity to play video games in a highly competitive, organized environment. E-sports competitions have become very popular, and the activity will grow students’ organization, teamwork, and planning skills, all of which are highly valued in many career paths.
  • Girls wrestling: After being sanctioned by the Iowa Girls Athletic Union recently, girls wrestling is now available separate from boys wrestling. MHS will include girls wrestling starting next school year, and only one team member is required to have the program. MHS Activities Director Ryan Isgrig said three girls went out for wrestling with the boys team last year, and more interest could come now that a girls wrestling team is available.
  • Career Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs): The board approved two new CTSOs to be offered at MHS next school year – Future Farmers of America (FFA) and Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA). Along with offering valuable work-based learning experiences, the organizations will also help foster community partnerships and support the ongoing career and technical education underway at MCSD.

Research shows that students who participate in school activities tend to have improved academic performance and school engagement compared to non-participants. The three activities approved on Monday will add to the great, enriching opportunities available to Bobcat students!

Class of 2022 Seal of Biliteracy earners (from left) Rebekah Stone, Siang Tial, and Miguel Becerra demonstrate their language skills at Monday’s board meeting. They are among the record-breaking 53 graduates who received a Seal of Biliteracy this year.
Click here to see all of this year’s Seal of Biliteracy earners!

Record-breaking 53 Class of 2022 grads earn Seal of Biliteracy – watch recording
A record-breaking 53 graduates from the Class of 2022 earned a Seal of Biliteracy this school year, and three biliterate graduates demonstrated their skills during a board recognition on Monday.

Seal of Biliteracy earners Miguel Becerra (Spanish), Rebekah Stone (French), and Siang Tial (Hakha Chin) each gave an introduction in their languages and shared their future plans with the board. Every year, the Seal is awarded to students for attaining proficiency in English and one or more languages by the time they graduate from high school.

The future of the Seal of Biliteracy at MCSD is bright, with 28 juniors having already qualified to earn the Seal upon graduating as part of the Class of 2023.

New music curricula recommended – watch recording
Director of Instruction Shauna Smith and Curriculum and Professional Development Leader (CDPL) Julie Thede were joined by Miller Middle School Band Instructor Mary Potter and MHS Vocal Music Instructor Amy Ose to recommend new music curriculum materials for K-6 general music and 5-12 performance music on Monday.

The curriculum recommended for K-6 general music was Quaver, while the MusicFirst and SmartMusic platforms were recommended for performance music at grades 5-12.

The board heard a recommendation for new music curricular materials at Monday’s board meeting. Pictured, from left: MHS Vocal Music instructor Amy Ose, Director of Instruction Shauna Smith, Miller Middle School Band instructor Mary Potter, and CDPL Julie Thede.

HumanEx Culture Survey results presented – watch recording
HumanEx CEO Brad Black presented an executive summary of the 2022 District-wide employee culture survey on Monday evening. The summary includes the District’s scores on 15 culture dimensions, a comparison to previous scores, and much more.

The top five scoring dimensions this year were Engage-Inspire, Pride, Continuous Improvement, Innovation, and Quality.

New preschool literacy curriculum approved – watch recording
The board voted to approve a four-year agreement for the Frog Street preschool literacy curriculum at Monday’s meeting. The approval vote came after the curriculum was presented by Director of Instruction Shauna Smith in May.

MCSD receives clean financial statement audit for FY 2021 – watch recording
Kristi Wick of Hogan-Hansen, CPAs and Consultants gave an overview of the MCSD Fiscal Year 2021 financial statement audit at Monday’s board meeting. The independent firm found no issues in their audit of the District’s finances, and the board voted to approve the statement as presented.

2022-23 school meal price changes approved – watch recording
The board approved a set of school meal price changes recommended by Director of Food Service Lynn Large on Monday. Large said the slight price increases were necessary to remain compliant with the USDA’s Paid Lunch Equity Tool and federal regulations, and to keep up with challenges created by supply chain shortages and rising food supply costs.

Employee handbook and appendices discussed – watch recording
The recommended 2022-23 MCSD employee handbook and appendices were presented by Director of Human Resources Dr. Nora Ryan for information and discussion on Monday evening. The handbook covers the following groups: 

  • Nutrition professionals
  • Buildings and Grounds staff
  • Paraeducators
  • School bus drivers and monitors
  • 10- and 12-month secretaries, administrative assistants, bilingual attendance specialists, youth counselors, and hourly staff in the Business, HR, and IT departments.
  • Staff who are part of the Marshalltown Education Association (MEA), including teachers, school counselors, librarians, school nurses and special resource personnel.

No action was taken on the employee handbook and appendices on Monday, and an approval vote is scheduled to take place at a future meeting.

MEA Supplemental Pay schedule, MOA approved – watch recording
The board approved the 2022-23 MEA Supplemental Pay Schedule, as well as a memorandum of agreement regarding Career and Technical Education (CTE) instructors with a limited teaching authorization on the current salary schedule.

Security camera purchase gains approval – watch recording
A set of 10 AVA security cameras will be installed at Miller Middle School after board action on Monday. 

The new cameras can record to the cloud or to a cloud-hybrid system. Secure and Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) funds will be used for the camera purchase.

Summer projects set to move forward – watch recording
Director of Buildings and Grounds Todd Goulding gained board approval to move forward with planned summer projects on Monday. The projects will take place across the District and will include renovations, replacements, and upgrades both inside of buildings and on outdoor school grounds.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved Tuesday, click here.

Policies:
First reading – 

  • 415.1 Drug and Alcohol Testing Program (amended, second reading waived)
  • 415.1-E1 Drug and Alcohol Testing Program Notice to Employees (amended, second reading waived)
  • New Exhibit 403.6-E3 Drug and Alcohol Program and Pre-Employment Testing Written Consent Information (adopted, second reading waived)

Initial Review – 

  • 415.3 Relations to Pupils and Public (deleted)
  • 415.5 Classified Substitutes (deleted)
  • 200.3 Responsibilities of the Board of Directors (will come back for a first reading)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, June 20, 2022 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, as well as our Facebook, and Twitter pages.

May 16, 2022 Board Meeting

17 May

To watch the full board meeting discussion of the below items, please click the “watch recording” link next to each item. The links will take you to the start of each of the below agenda items/topics from the board meeting recording.

Several of this year’s MHS dual graduates share their areas of study with the school board. Pictured, from left: Alivia Eaton, Marcus Barker, Erin Stanley, Cassidy Wedemeyer, Zoe Johnson, Hunter Block, Paige Wertzberger, Jackie Bravo, Rochelle Avalos, Taylor Jones, and Veronica Herrera.

Class of 2022 dual graduates recognized – watch recording
The Marshalltown School Board recognized 18 MHS seniors who will graduate with a college degree, diploma, or certificate in hand at the Monday, May 16, 2022 regular meeting. The students recognized on Monday evening included:

  • Rochelle Avalos (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Marcus Barker (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Hunter Block (Fire Science Certificate – Kirkwood Community College)
  • Jackelyn Bravo Hernandez (Early Childhood: Child Development Certificate – MCC)
  • Uriel Botello (Architecture, Construction, & Engineering Career Academy Certificate – MCC)
  • Lilly Duff (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Alivia Eaton (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Brenna Hempy (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Veronica Herrera (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Zoe Johnson (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Taylor Jones (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Jonah Landas (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Jose Manuel Vergara (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Levi Ogston (Manufacturing Welding Practitioner Diploma – MCC)
  • Alejandro Rivas Alanis (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Erin Stanley (Associate of Arts – MCC)
  • Cassidy Wedemeyer (Associate of Arts – MCC)

Congratulations to all of these exceptional students!

2021-22 Marshalltown School Board student representatives (from left) Haley Reed, Aaron Seberger, Phoebe Hermanson, and Taylor Jones were presented with certificates of recognition at Monday’s regular meeting.

Student School Board representatives thanked for their service – watch recording
Student School Board representatives Phoebe Hermanson, Taylor Jones, Haley Reed, and Aaron Seberger were recognized and thanked for their service during the 2021-22 school year on Monday evening.

The four student representatives also shared their final presentation on MHS happenings with the board. All four seniors will graduate with their Class of 2022 peers later this month. Learn more about these exceptional student leaders here!

NIET professional learning proposal approved – watch recording
The board approved an agreement with the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching (NIET) to provide professional learning services in the 2022-23 school year.

Director of Instruction Shauna Smith, Director of Special Services Matt Cretsinger, College & Career Readiness Curriculum and Professional Development Leader (CDPL) Jenny Allen, and PK-6 CDPL Erica Finders presented on NIET and how it will fit in with the District’s initiatives.

Director of Instruction Shauna Smith (left), PK-6 CDPL Erica Finders (center), and Preschool Coordinator Emily Banks (right) discuss the proposed Frog Street preschool literacy curriculum on Monday evening.

Preschool literacy curriculum recommendation presented – watch recording
District Director of Instruction Shauna Smith, PK-6 CDPL Erica Finders, and Preschool Coordinator Emily Banks presented a recommended new preschool literacy curriculum – Frog Street – on Monday evening.

The three education leaders described the highlights of Frog Street, and said they were joined by preschool teachers and PK-4 instructional coaches in the process of narrowing down curriculum options to come to a recommendation.

The board did not take action on this item on Monday evening. A vote on the recommended curriculum will take place at an upcoming board meeting.

Marshalltown Learning Academy showcase presented – watch recording
Marshalltown Learning Academy Principal Eric Goslinga gave an overview of the school’s programs and philosophy. He said MLA’s four primary student learning focus areas include core instruction, work-based learning, dual credit & transition, and social-emotional learning.

Goslinga said MLA serves as an alternative learning environment for high school students, offering several pathways to academic success. He said a semester at MLA is defined by a set of standards for a student to master – not as a function of time.

High school graduates list approved – watch recording
The board approved a list of 350 soon-to-be high school graduates at Monday’s meeting, pending fulfillment of graduation requirements. The Class of 2022 MHS Commencement Ceremony will be held at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 29 at Leonard Cole Field, and will be available to watch via live stream.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved Tuesday, click here.

Policies:
Initial Review – 

  • 415.1 Drug and Alcohol Testing Program (will come back for a first reading)
  • 415.1-E1 Drug and Alcohol Testing Program Notice to Employees (will come back for a first reading)
  • 415.1-E2 Drug and Alcohol Program and Pre-Employment Testing Acknowledgment Form (marked as reviewed)
  • New Exhibit 403.6-E3 Drug and Alcohol Program and Pre-Employment Testing Written Consent Information (will come back for a first reading)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, June 6, 2022 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, as well as our Facebook, and Twitter pages.

May 2, 2022 Board Meeting

3 May

To watch the full board meeting discussion of the below items, please click the “watch recording” link next to each item. The links will take you to the start of each of the below agenda items/topics from the board meeting recording.

School Board Recognition Month celebrated – watch recording
May is School Board Recognition Month, and Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte shared the District’s appreciation for the significant contributions made by the seven members of the Marshalltown School Board at the Monday, May 2 regular meeting.

Board members are elected by their school community members to manage our local schools. Along with overseeing the District’s annual budget, board members make key decisions in the interest of our 5,200 students and nearly 900 staff spread across 10 school buildings and a virtual academy. These elected volunteers create school policy, approve curricula, develop innovative opportunities, and maintain school facilities. They spend many hours in board training programs and personal study, while also advocating for public schools with their local legislators.

Thank you to all seven Marshalltown School Board members!

  • Sean Heitmann, President
  • Sara Faltys, Vice President
  • Karina Hernandez
  • Bonnie Lowry
  • Jan McGinnis
  • Leah Stanley
  • Zach Wahl

Great appreciation shown for educators – watch recording
Also highlighted at the May 2 regular board meeting were the hundreds of teachers and educational staff who serve Bobcat students every day. Tuesday, May 3 is Teacher Appreciation Day, with Teacher Appreciation Week continuing through Friday, May 6.

Dr. Schutte gave special thanks to teachers for providing quality learning environments for students. He also thanked staff members who support students’ learning every day alongside the District’s outstanding teachers, who play a key role in developing the leaders and thinkers of tomorrow.

$5,000 sign-on incentive approved for XLP, 7-12 science teaching positions – watch recording
A $5,000 sign-on incentive will be offered for newly-hired, full-time Extended Learning Program (XLP) teachers and science teachers at grades 7-12 after board action on Monday.

As with other positions approved for the $5,000 sign-on incentive, a candidate must commit to at least three years of employment. 

Other teaching positions currently approved for the incentive include 7-12 math, industrial arts, and special education. Reach out to nryan@marshalltown.k12.ia.us for questions about this incentive.

Students who had impressive showings at the recent National History Day state competition share about their projects with the board. Pictured, from left: Lucas Hagen, Charles Gilbertson, Leticia Herrera, and Yessenia Alvarez Zamora.

Students’ National History Day state competition successes highlighted – watch recording
Four Bobcat students were recognized for their outstanding performances at the National History Day state competition in April.

MHS students Leticia Herrera and Yessenia Alvarez Zamora qualified for the NHD national competition for their group exhibit “La Huelga: The Struggle That Brought Farmworkers Rights.” Fellow MHS student Charlie Gilbertson won the Military History Award and was a runner-up for Nationals with his documentary “How the U-2 Incident Eroded Super Power Diplomacy.”

Additionally, Miller Middle School eighth grader Lucas Hagen’s National History Day performance, titled “The Caning of Senator Charles Sumner,” earned a top-three finish in the state competition’s junior individual performance division. Lucas was selected as an alternate for the upcoming NHD National Contest as a result of his excellent performance.

Senior Manuel Castellanos, left, and junior Journee Blaylock, right, share the positive impacts the iJAG program has had on their journey toward graduation.

iJAG students share successes as board approves continued partnership – watch recording
The board heard about the positive impacts the Iowa Jobs for America’s Graduates (iJAG) program has had on two MHS students at Monday’s meeting. Senior Manuel Castellanos and junior Journee Blaylock said the program has helped them find success in their journey toward graduation.

As part of Monday’s consent agenda, the board approved continuing the District’s partnership with iJAG at Miller Middle School, MHS, and Marshalltown Learning Academy in the 2022-23 school year.

MHS early graduates list approved – watch recording
Several Class of 2023 Marshalltown High School students were approved to graduate early, pending completion of graduation requirements. Some of the students are set to graduate a year early, and others plan to graduate after the fall semester of 2022-23.

Approval given to seek bids for a new aquatic scoreboard – watch recording
The board granted approval for the MHS Activities Department and District Technology Department to seek bids on a new, upgraded scoreboard for the MHS Pool. Scoring equipment will be sought along with the new scoreboard.

Pictured, from left: Hogan Principal Amy Williams, third grade teacher Hannah Pfantz, instructional coach Mallory Kern, and school resource specialist Angela Pelham share a showcase of their school at Monday’s board meeting.

Hoglan Elementary showcase presented – watch recording
Hoglan Elementary Principal Amy Williams was joined by third grade teacher Hannah Pfantz, instructional coach Mallory Kern, and school resource specialist Angela Pelham to give an overview of the school’s programs on Monday.

The Hoglan educators described the significant social-emotional learning (SEL) efforts underway at the school, including Morning Meeting, Bobcat Buddies, and more.

Student School Board reps (from left) Phoebe Hermanson, Aaron Seberger, and Taylor Jones share an update on the happenings at Marshalltown High School.

Student School Board representatives’ report – watch recording
Student School Board representatives Phoebe Hermanson, Aaron Seberger, and Taylor Jones shared the latest happenings and upcoming events at Marshalltown High School.

2022-23 school handbooks approved – watch recording
School handbooks covering the preschool and elementary levels, Lenihan Intermediate School, Miller Middle School, Marshalltown High School, Marshalltown Learning Academy, Marshalltown Virtual Academy (elementary & secondary levels) and the Transportation Department were approved by the board on Monday.

The handbooks provide students and families with important information on expectations, rules, policies, procedures, and curriculum at each school. The handbooks were approved after being presented to the board in April.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved Tuesday, click here.

Policies:
Initial Review – 

  • 414.11 Classified Employees Personal Leave (deleted)
  • 414.12 Temporary Disability (deleted)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, May 16, 2022 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, as well as our Facebook, and Twitter pages.

April 18, 2022 Board Report

19 Apr

To watch the full board meeting discussion of the below items, please click the “watch recording” link next to each item. The links will take you to the start of each of the below agenda items/topics from the board meeting recording.

Several employee agreements, wage increases approved – watch recording
Five agreements with Marshalltown CSD employee groups gained board approval at the Monday, April 18 Marshalltown School Board meeting. Each of the agreements included an increase in wages. The agreements approved on Monday included the following employee groups:

Students enjoy learning how to scuba dive at the MHS Pool during P.E. class.
MHS P.E. teacher Chris Ehlert describes the scuba diving P.E. unit at Monday’s meeting.

Details shared on unique scuba diving P.E. unit at MHS – watch recording
Marshalltown High School P.E. teacher Chris Ehlert gave an overview of the unique, exciting scuba diving unit provided to students for the first time this month. 

Ehlert described how the unit positively impacted students. The scuba diving unit was made possible thanks to a partnership with STC Dive Center, and students received instruction at the MHS Pool.

Public School Volunteer Week, Administrative Professionals Day recognized – watch recording
Two important groups within the Marshalltown Schools community were recognized on Monday.

This week, April 18-22, is National School Volunteer week. The Marshalltown CSD is blessed to have parents and community members who give their time to support Bobcat students’ education and extracurricular activities.

Administrative Professionals Day is next Wednesday, April 27. Administrative Professionals Day is an opportunity to highlight the critical work done by the administrative assistants and secretarial staff spread throughout the District. These professionals serve as crucial points of contact for parents, students, fellow staff members, and community members.

2022-23 school handbooks presented – watch recording
School handbooks covering the preschool and elementary levels, Lenihan Intermediate School, Miller Middle School, Marshalltown High School, Marshalltown Learning Academy, Marshalltown Virtual Academy (elementary & secondary levels) and the Transportation Department were presented to the board on Monday.

The handbooks provide students and families with important information on expectations, rules, policies, procedures, and curriculum at each school. The handbooks were up for discussion only at Monday’s meeting, and are set to be voted upon by the board at a future meeting.

Marshalltown High School showcase presented – watch recording
Marshalltown High School Principal Jacque Wyant was joined by Associate Principal Michael Dale, and  Instructional Coaches Brad Weidenaar and Janelle Hawk to present on student data and programs. 

The group touched on the high school’s overall vision and goals, and included information on student involvement in extracurricular activities.

Student School Board representatives Phoebe Hermanson, Aaron Seberger, and Taylor Jones present at Monday’s meeting.

Student School Board representatives’ report – watch recording
Student School Board representatives Phoebe Hermanson, Aaron Seberger, and Taylor Jones shared the latest happenings and upcoming events at Marshalltown High School.

Communications
Communications Director Adam Sodders reviewed the good news from the district by sharing newspaper articles as well as school communications articles. That list can be seen here.

Personnel items
For a list of personnel items approved Tuesday, click here.

Policies:
Initial Review – 

  • 411.5 Classified Employee Assignment (adopted, second reading waived)
  • 411.6 Classified Employee Transfers (adopted, second reading waived)
  • 411.8 Classified Employee Probationary Status (adopted, second reading waived)
  • 413.2 Classified Employee Retirement (amended, second reading waived)
  • 413.3 Dismissal and Suspension of Classified Employees (amended, second reading waived)

First Reading – 

  • 414.2 Personal Illness (deleted)
  • 414.10 Classified Employees Immediate Family Illness (deleted)

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, May 2, 2022 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave. The meeting will be available to watch via live stream through the MCSD website, as well as our Facebook, and Twitter pages.