Vol. 12 | Issue 17

16 Apr

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‘Team Genius’ leads state in First in Math competition

Skyler Rush, 5,955 points; Austin Shomo, 6,664 points; Lily Martin, 6,902 points; Alonzo Ceren, 7,370 points; Seth Derby, 7,790 points (8th in state); Jay Drummer, 12,548 points (2nd in state).

Six students from Fisher, Rogers and Woodbury elementary schools are leading the state in the online math competition First in Math, a lead they have held for most of the school year.

Marcia Plett, who facilitates the Extended Learning Program in those schools, brought Skyler Rush, Austin Shomo, Lily Martin, Alonzo Ceren, Seth Derby and Jay Drummer to the Board meeting Monday night to be recognized for their success in First in Math.

First in Math is an online program that allows students to complete math problems and earn points according to varying degrees of difficulty. Students can access the program from any computer with Internet access. Plett said students spend a lot of time out of the classroom working on problems and improving their skills.

Besides being the top team in the state, two students are among the top 10 individuals in First in Math. Seth Derby from Rogers Elementary is 8th in Iowa and Jay Drummer from Woodbury Elementary is ranked second.

Board approves 2011 audit report

Representatives from Nolte, Cornman, & Johnson, P.C., presented the Board with an overview of the 2011 audit report for the district.

The audit showed general fund revenues increased by $4.5 million in FY2011 and general fund expenditures increased by $2.4 million. The increase in revenue was due to an increase in state grant and state aid revenue, while increased expenditures were attributed to an increase in the instruction and support services area.

The district has a solvency ratio of 6.21 percent. Mary Babinat from Nolte said in the current economic climate they see 5 to 8 percent as an acceptable range.

MHS track to be resurfaced this summer

Midwest Tennis & Track will complete the Marshalltown High School track resurfacing.

The project will cost $129,063, which includes resurfacing the track, resurfacing the team and coach boxes with artificial turf, and an extension of the west track straightaway.

Work will be done in July so it does not conflict with athletics and community events scheduled at the complex in June and August.

French language immersion trip approved

Students in French IV and French Club have the option to attend a French language immersion weekend in Bemidji, Minn., May 10-13, 2012.

The Concordia Language Villages in Bemidji offer a program called “Les Voyageurs”, which takes students through the life of a French-Canadian fur trader. Diane Strehlow, who teaches French at Marshalltown High School, says the program not only offers language immersion, but also lessons in history.

Since the trip is not required for students, they are responsible for the cost ($287/student).


By Dr. Marvin Wade, Superintendent of Schools

This evening the Board of Education approved a contract with RDG Planning & Design to serve as the architectural/engineering firm for the Roundhouse Renovation Project. RDG Architect Joe Benesh joins 11 other individuals on the MCSD Design Advisory Committee that provides oversight to the Roundhouse renovation project.

In early May RDG will begin a three step process to create a Facility Master Plan for the Roundhouse. A needs assessment will be conducted, variables will be analyzed, and drawings of proposed scenarios will be presented for consideration.

With CPMI as Project Manager and RDG as Architect, the Marshalltown community has a talented, experienced and proven design team. It is exciting to begin the long overdue process of honoring the significant past of the Roundhouse AND creating a new icon that will act as a catalyst for renewed community pride.


By Kay Beach, Board President

We took care of some pretty hefty business tonight (authorizing the refinancing of bonds, hiring an architect for the Roundhouse,) but the highlight of the meeting for me came early-on when we met the members of “Team Genius.”  This group of 4th-graders has put our schools in the limelight with their #1- in-Iowa ranking in the First in Math online competition.  These youngsters were introduced to the competition through the Extended Learning Program at their various schools, but then they individually accepted the challenge of doing math problems at home in their spare time “for fun!”  The ELP provides new and unusual opportunities for students who might otherwise find their grade-level work less than challenging—and lets them soar as high as they want to fly.   It’s just one more way that our system “nurtures” students to become “intellectually and personally empowered.”



Peggy Schoer, Anson paraeducator, effective at the end of the 2011-2012 school year, has been paraeducator at Anson for 35 years.


Lisa Glenn, Director of Special Services, effective June 30, 2012.

Cynthia Rolfes-Eggers, MHS English/drama teacher, effective at the end of the 2011-2012 school year.

Tina Nelson, Rogers half-time nurse, effective at the end of the 2011-2012 school year.

Denise Smith, B&G warehouse/receiving supervisor, effective May 31, 2012.

Pam Gulbranson, MHS counseling office 10-month secretary, effective at the end of the 2011-2012 school year.

Mary Miller, MHS counseling office 10-month secretary, effective June 5, 2012.

Briana Spurlin, Anson paraeducator, effective April 8, 2012.

Claire Hanken, Miller Learning Supports Specialist, effective May 31, 2012.


Mark Busch, MHS chemistry teacher. Start date: Aug. 15, 2012. Salary: BA Step 5 (TBD).

David Wadle, Miller 8th Grade math teacher. Start date: Aug. 15, 2012. Salary: BA+15 Step 11 (TBD).

Jacob Borton, Miller paraeducator. Start date: April 9, 2012. Salary: $8.47/hour.

Julie Giannetto, MHS food service. Start date: March 19, 2012. Salary: $10.04/hour.

Jennifer Hufford, assistant 8th grade girls track coach. Start date: April 9, 2012. Salary: $2,242/year.

Change of Contract

Rod Hassler, bus driver. Change from substitute to regular route driver. Start date: March 7, 2012. Salary: $605.91/month.


Second Reading: 201.7 Organization of the Board, approved

Initial Reading: 202.2 President Vice-President, 202.3 Secretary Treasurer, mark reviewed

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