Archive | May, 2016

May 16, 2016 board meeting

17 May

MHS students Jacqueline Wahl, left, and Victoria Johnson brought their award-winning National History Day display on the telegraph to the board meeting.

Marshalltown High School students Jacqueline Wahl and Victoria Johnson presented their third place entry in the National History Day state contest. The project was on the telegraph.

“There was nothing like it when it was first invented,” Wahl said of the telegraph.


Launa Snyder, left, and Nicole Gaughan

District Behavior Strategists Nicole Gaughan and Launa Snyder presented about their work throughout the district. The pair recently presented at the Learning Supports Conference.

Gaughan said they have participated in training at the University of Iowa that was offered by the Iowa Department of Education and pass on what they’ve learned to staff throughout the district. They get referrals from school teams and assist with behavior plans, interventions and other ways to assist staff with students.


For personnel items approved by the board, click here.

New Human Resources Director


Anthony Spurgetis

Anthony Spurgetis has been hired as the new Director of Human Resources for the district.

Spurgetis currently works in human resources at Des Moines Public Schools and also has experience in human resources at the Cedar Rapids Community School District.

He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa and a master’s degree in Human Resource studies from Penn State University.

“I am so grateful for the opportunity to lead the HR Department at MCSD and am very excited to join the team in June,” Spurgetis wrote in an email to the communications department.

Appointment of Superintendent


Dr. Theron Schutte

Dr. Theron Schutte was approved as the district’s next superintendent.

His contract calls for a salary of $204,000 per year and he will start at MCSD on July 1. Dr. Schutte is currently superintendent of the Bettendorf Community School District and served as superintendent previously in Boone.

He is a 1981 Marshalltown High School graduate, who is getting ready to celebrate his 35-year reunion with his classmates. For more information on Dr. Schutte, click here.


Out of state trip request
MHS Dean of Students Dan Terrones and student Kyli Jacobsen asked the board to approve an out of state trip for the Health Careers Club. The club plans to make a trip to Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, June 2-4.

The high school is putting together health career academies for students and continues steps in that direction, Terrones said. This trip is funded by Central Iowa Healthcare. The request was approved by the board.


Franklin Principal Tim Holmgren talks to the board. At left is Leiah Craun and at right is Elizabeth Overstake.

Franklin Elementary Attendance Center Plan
Franklin Principal Tim Holmgren and school leadership team members Elizabeth Overstake, Jade Musgrave, Blair Struble, Leiah Craun, Kathy Ferguson, Karen Mussig, Kate Pimlott and Cheri Bolar presented the annual attendance center plan for the school.

Franklin has 357 students with 44 percent of those being minority.

The group talked about reading and math scores, the data wall, SIOP (Sheltered Instruction Observational Protocol), Multi-Tiered System of Supports, Language Literacy Framework, Comprehensive Literacy Model, professional development, collaborative planning, kindergarten reading levels, writer’s workshop, model classroom teachers, RCATS (Respect, Caring, Active Learner, Thoughtful Choices, Stay Safe), PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports), students of the month and other initiatives at the school.

Transportation Handbooks
Director of Transportation Don Meyer presented new transportation handbooks for both kindergarten through sixth grade and 7th through 12th grades. This came from a plan to deal with student issues on buses. The board approved the handbooks with some minor changes that dealt with corresponding to board policy.

District Insurance Bid Waiver Request
Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz requested that the district delay the insurance bids for property and worker’s comp for one year. This has typically been done every three years. The one-year delay was approved by the board.

Board policies
310.4 – Organizational chart – Approved as presented, waived second reading
302.3 – Associates to the Superintendent – Directors and Supervisors – Appointment – Approved as presented, waived second reading.
303.1 – Building Principals and Associates – Approved as presented, waived second reading.
312-3-E2 – Fringe Benefits – Administrators/Supervisors – Request Form – Marked as reviewed
312.5- Administrative Personnel – Professional Development – Marked as reviewed
314.2- Administrative Personnel Contract Termination – Resignation – Marked as reviewed
314.3- Administrative Personnel – Termination – Dismissal – Marked as reviewed
401.1R – Grievance Procedure – Marked as reviewed

From Board President Bea Niblock:
“Last night’s meeting saw the appointment of Dr. Theron Schutte to the position of Superintendent for the school district. His contract will begin on July 1, 2016, with the departure of Dr. Marvin Wade.

Dr. Schutte tells us that his appointment is like ‘coming home.’ He graduated from Marshalltown High School in 1981, and 35 years later, returns to Marshalltown as its MCSD superintendent. The board looks forward to working with Dr. Schutte, setting district goals, creating a new strategic plan and building strong community connections.

And, the board thanks Dr. Wade for his years of service to the district and wishes him well in his continued educational journey as superintendent in Manhattan, Kansas.” – Bea Niblock

The next regular board meeting is June 6 at 5 p.m. in district offices.


May 2, 2016 board meeting

3 May

Miller Middle School Counselor John Augustine recognized Gaby Gonzalez, center, and Avy Smith for their selection into the Blank Summer Institute. Not present was Donovan Gavagan.

Miller Middle School counselor John Augustine presented two students selected for the Blank Summer Institute at the University of Iowa this summer. The students included Gaby Gonzalez and Avy Smith. Donovan Gavagan was also selected but was not present.
Gaby said she looks forward to meeting new people and Avy said she looks forward to learning on a college campus. For more information on this honor, click here.

School handbooks approval
The changes for the school handbooks were presented at the April 18 meeting. This was final approval of the handbooks with minor changes for the 2016-17 school year.

Website redesign
District Communications Director Andrew Potter proposed the district enter a contract with Global Reach of Ames for the district website redesign. The redesign will occur this summer and give the site a fresher look and increase capability for use on smartphones. The new site is expected to be up and running in early August.

Board Policies
310.4 – Organizational chart – Board Vice President Janelle Carter said the board will look at the administration chart proposed, but plans on moving the title of associate superintendent to a director of instructional services position to give the new superintendent some flexibility with this position. The board also plans to make that director position at the same level of other director positions in the district. The chart will come back for a first reading at the next meeting.

302.2 – Associates to the Superintendent – Qualifications – Marked as reviewed
302.3 – Associates to the Superintendent – Directors and Supervisors- Appointment – Change of a wording, to be brought back
302.4 – Associates to the Superintendent – Functions – Marked as reviewed.
303.1 – Building Principals and Associates – Change in wording, to be brought back
305.1 – Administrative Cabinet – Marked as reviewed.

Personnel items
For personnel items, click here. (The termination was pulled from the list of personnel approval items pending a hearing)

The board entered into a closed session to discuss the candidates for the superintendent position. The finalists are expected to be announced on May 3.

From Board President Bea Niblock
“I remember the day that the district website was launched with tabs to each attendance center and how the website has grown and changed over the years. But, the time has come for the district website to have a facelift.

Andrew Potter, district Communications Director, will work with Global Reach of Ames to develop a new design with a fresher look and better viewing capability on smartphones and mobile devices. The new design will be user friendly with up-to-date information at the fingertips of the community and our students’ families. The new website is expected to be launched by the beginning of the next school year.

The district should be commended for reaching out to make the district website fresh, user friendly and transparent to all who log on.” – Bea Niblock