April 4, 2016 Board Meeting

5 Apr

Anson Elementary Preschool teacher Samantha Randall talks to the school board about tablet use by preschool students in the district on April 4. Demonstrating tablet use are Zoey, left, and Quinlan Pals, preschool students at Anson.

District Preschool Program Coordinator Emily Banks, along with Anson Elementary Preschool teacher Samantha Randall, led demonstrations of tablet use in preschools as part of the Digital Conversion in the district. Also taking part in the demonstration were preschool students Quinlan Pals and Zoey Pals.

“Tablets help us with problem solving and learning the sequence of events,” Randall said.

Public Hearing on the fiscal year 2017 certified budget
No one from the public commented during this budget public hearing.

For Personnel items, click here.

Miller Middle School attendance center plan
Miller Principal Jacy Large delivered this presentation. He said technology is a major thrust at Miller, where there are 780 students.

Teachers are using technology up to 80 percent of the time during class to deliver instruction.


Jacy Large 

Large said “creativity is allowed” when it comes to teachers presenting their lessons at Miller. Large said he often asks staff, “What are we doing to make a student want to come back?”

His presentation included videos made by the students of the recent Career Fair at the school and the corresponding Project Day. Each student the past two years has been exposed to 26 different careers during these career fairs,Large said. Large also talked about Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports and other strategies utilized at Miller.

Explanation of Financial Statements
Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz went over a current snapshot of the financial statements including revenues and expenses. Bartz said the budget is right on target as far as the revenues.

Actions Based on Audit Report
Bartz gave an update on findings from the audit report and the changes that have been made since that report to rectify each issue.
For more information on this item, click here.

Purchase of New School Buses
Director of Transportation Don Meyer requested the purchase of three new buses as part of the replacement schedule. Three new buses were approved for purchase from School Bus Sales and Hoglund Bus Company, including an 11-passenger (from Hoglund) and a 65-passenger and 77-passenger (both from School Bus Sales). The total cost of the three buses is $218, 369, including trade-ins of four buses.

Budget Guarantee
Bartz said this allows the school district to receive 1 percent new money if for some reason the 2.25 percent increase in state aid is not approved by the governor. The board approved this.

Fiscal Year 2017 Certified Budget
The board approved the fiscal year 2017 certified budget, presented by Brian Bartz. Districts in the state are still waiting on the governor’s signature on the proposed 2.25 percent supplemental aid increase for schools, which has been approved by the Iowa House and Senate. If that approval goes through, the tax rate is expected to be $17.93 per $1,000 valuation, a decrease of 40 cents from the current rate of $18.33. If there is no supplemental aid increase, the tax rate would be approximately $18.69.

Board polices
603.12-RElectronic Resources and Electronic Mail – Appropriate Use Regulation- Approved, waived second reading.
603.12 – Internet – Appropriate and Safe Use – Approved, waived second reading
204.1 – Regular Meetings– Marked as reviewed
204.2 – Special meetings –Marked as reviewed
204.3 – Closed Sessions – Marked as reviewed
204.4 – Annual Meeting – Marked as reviewed
204.5 – Organizational Meeting –Marked as reviewed
310.4- Organizational Chart – A new chart from the board was proposed as a platform for discussion. Board member Mike Miller said he would like to get the new superintendent on board before moving forward with the chart. No action was taken by the board, with future discussion planned.

Committee report
Board member Ben Stansberry said the Roundhouse public art committee has made the selection of “Drills” by Gail Folwell, a sculptor from Colorado. He said it could be installed as early as November outside of the Roundhouse. This is being paid for by an Iowa Great Places grant.

From Board Vice President Janelle Carter
“Tonight the board continued with the budget process begun at the last meeting. Following the public hearing, the board voted to increase the district’s levy from $18.33 per thousand dollar valuation to $18.69 per thousand. This represents an increase of $.36 in property taxes for those within the district for the next fiscal year. In the absence of supplemental growth, which is where we are right now, the increase is something the board felt was necessary to allow the district the ability to levy should there be no increase. That done, should the state come through with the Iowa House and Senate approved 2.25 percent increase, the levy will be lowered to approximately $17.93 per thousand. So, what looks like a tax increase today, will potentially be a decrease upon the signing of the 2.25 percent increase in supplemental aid by Governor Branstad. The budget process will, however, continue over the next several meetings.

On a lighter note, the board heard an uplifting report from Miller Middle School Principal Jacy Large on many of the exciting projects and programs happening at MMS this year. Included in this report were video clips from students broadcasting daily announcements and field reports on Bobcat Broadcast, a report on the recent Career Fair and Project Day, and also updates on progress and goals for MMS. Also guests tonight with District Preschool Coordinator Emily Banks and Anson preschool teacher Samantha Randall, were preschoolers Quinlan and Zoey to help demonstrate some of the uses of tablets in the classroom.” – Janelle Carter

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