Archive | July, 2017

July 17, 2017 Board Meeting

18 Jul

New Fisher Elementary School Principal Mark Lee introduced himself to the school board at the July 17 meeting.

Introduction of the new Fisher Elementary School Principal Mark Lee
New Fisher Elementary School Principal Mark Lee introduced himself to the board.
“I’ve been at Fisher for a few weeks and am getting to know some of the staff.” Lee said.
“Everyone has been super supportive.”


MHS students Isabel Paredes, left, and Nayeli Barajas talk about a recent business program they participated in at the University of Iowa.

Students participate in University of Iowa business program
Marshalltown High School students Isabel Paredes and Nayeli Barajas talked about their participation in the recent Gateway Program at the University of Iowa’s Tippie College of Business. For more about their experience, click here.

For personnel items approved by the board, click here. Director of Human Resources Anthony Spurgetis said Laurie Mullen is rescinding her resignation.
Spurgetis said they still have six teaching spots to fill this summer.

2016-17 End of the Year report
Director of Instruction Dr. Lisa Stevenson presented this report to summarize measured data points collected at the state and local level. For the presentation document, click here.

Dr. Stevenson’s presentation had the following areas of focus: Attendance, Bullying & Harassment, Drop Out & Graduation, Iowa Assessments, PK-6 FAST & IGDIs Reading (tests), Attendance Center Plans and School Improvement Goals

Attendance is listed number one on her executive summary for a reason, Dr. Stevenson said. Chronic absences (missing 18 or more school days) have continued to increase during the past four years.

“We are going to have a really hard time moving the needle for student achievement for kids who are not there,” Dr. Stevenson said.

The following are goals set for 2017-18

The percentage of chronically absent students will be no more than 15% of all PK-12 students.

The percentage of chronically tardy students will be no more than 10% of all PK-12 students.

The percentage of students who bully/harass will be no more than 2% of all PK-12 students.

Drop Outs
The number of students who drop out will be no more than 80.

Graduation Rate
The percentage of students who graduate will be 90%.

Iowa Assessments Reading
The percentage of students considered proficient in Reading in 17-18 will be:                  4th grade – 60%
8th grade – 62%
11th grade – 68%

Iowa Assessments Math
The percentage of students considered proficient in Reading in 17-18 will be: 4th grade – 69% , 8th grade – 71%, 11th grade – 75%

IGDIs Spring
The percentage of preschool students considered proficient on Spring IGDIs in 17-18 will be 40%

The percentage of K-6 students considered proficient on Spring FAST in 17-18 will be 60%
Board President Bea Niblock said a goal of 5 percent increase in proficiency on Iowa Assessments is energetic and worried that would be put on the teachers.
“I don’t want them to feel that by having that expansive goal that we are saying you’re not working hard enough,” Niblock said.

“Our teachers work extraordinarily hard, we are trying to give them the support that they need,” said Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte.

Other discussion was held around goals, attendance and reporting on progress toward goals. Board Member Ross Harris said everyone has to get on board and work together to help boost scores, from the board to the staff to the parents.

“We have to work together,” Harris said.

Legislative Priorities 2018
Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte presented the Iowa Association of School Boards legislative priorities. The board will bring forward some recommended resolutions to discuss at the Aug. 7 board meeting. The board will approve priorities for the district at a future meeting.

School Board Meetings 2017-18
The board approved the meeting dates for the 2017-18 school year. Click here for the dates. Of note, the first September board meeting will be held the Tuesday after Labor Day instead of the following Monday as has been the practice in recent past.

Transfer of Funds
Administration recommended the transfer of $52,061.00 from the general fund to activity fund to refund the activity fund for the general fund’s portion of expenses that were paid by the activity fund.

This helps cover half of the cost of transportation and weight training expenses, taking it out of the general fund, said Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz. Discussion was held regarding how the activity fund purchases were made in the past and why issues arose.

The board approved the transfer of funds and Board President Bea Niblock suggested a group of board members meet with district administrators to look at the approval process of purchases in activities.   Board members Mike Miller and Janelle Carter volunteered to be part of this committee.

iMac Lab Purchase (MHS)
This is for 22 iMac computers for $27,876.64 for the MHS art department (graphic design). This replaces computers that are in that lab. The board approved  the purchase.

Resolution of Plans and Specifications of MHS gym and wrestling addition project (Roundhouse Phase 2)
The board set a public hearing to approve plans and specs on the project for the August 21 meeting.

Board Policies

First reading
409.1 – Licensed Employee Vacation- Holidays-Personal Leave- Marked as reviewed.
409.2 – Sick leave – Changes to cumulative days, amended and waived second reading.
407.4 E- Disciplinary Guidelines – Licensed Personnel- Several changes made. Amended and waived second reading

Initial review
301.4 – Evaluation of the Superintendent – Marked as reviewed
301.4- R- Evaluation of the Superintendent – Marked as reviewed
301.4. E- Formal Superintendent Evaluation Report- Marked as reviewed
406.6 – Annuities- Licensed- Marked as reviewed.
413.3 E -Disciplinary Guidelines- Classified Personnel- Lessened amount of offenses before discharge as recommended by attorney. Approved as amended.
504.11- Wellness- A Wellness committee has formed and recommended discarding old policy and adding new policy which mirrors the  IASB policy. Board approved adoption of new policy.
504.11- R- Wellness-Regulation- Added three goals from the Wellness Committee.- Board approved adoption of new policy.
603.12 – Internet – Appropriate and Safe Use- Old one deleted and new one added, after recommendation by technology department.
603. 12 – R- Internet- Appropriate and Safe Use Regulation- Adopted
804.2 – Video Surveillance – Amended and approved
804.2 R – Video Surveillance Regulation – Amended and approved
804.2-E – Video Surveillance and Electronic Monitoring Exhibit- deleted-
409.3 R-2- Licensed Employee Family and Medical Leave-Definitions- Marked as reviewed
409.3- E1 – Licensed Employee Family and Medical Leave Notice to Employees- Marked as reviewed.
409.3 E-2 – Licensed Employee Family and Medical Leave – Request Form -Old form deleted- changes to form to come back before board
409.7- Licensed Employee Military Service -Marked as reviewed
409.8- Absence Without Pay- Licensed– Old one deleted- new one adopted
410.1- Substitute Teachers- – Marked as reviewed

Recognition of Monica Schneider

Board Recording Secretary Monica Schneider was recognized for 15 years of service. This was Monica’s last board meeting as she resigns from her post. Cake was served and a gift was given to Monica by Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte. Thank you Monica!

The next regular meeting of the board will be at 5 p.m. August 7. The board will hold a special work session at 5 p.m on July 24 for board and superintendent goal setting.

From Board President Bea Niblock
“Summer time is thought to be the time that everything moves at a relaxed pace. But, that certainly wasn’t the case at the recent board meeting.

The board had the opportunity to hear about the indicators of student achievement and to ask questions regarding the energetic goals set by the district for the new school year. There is a sense of urgency to move student achievement forward. The board and administration supports the hard work that our staff already does and will provide the necessary curricular and technology supports to continue that work.

The board also had discussions surrounding the finances of the district, the iMac lab purchase for the high school, and the resolution of plans for the MHS Phase II addition. A full agenda filled our meeting. There was no relaxed pace for our board.

Enjoy the remainder of your summer away from books, marker boards and lesson plans.” – Bea Niblock