October 2, 2017 board meting

3 Oct

Principals Honored as part of National Principals Month


Several of the Marshalltown Schools principals were in attendance at the school board to be recognized as part of National Principals Month. Pictured, from left, Tim Holmgren (Franklin), Mick Jurgensen (Rogers), Liz Jurgensen (Lenihan), Deb Holsapple (MHS), Amy Williams (Hoglan), Anel Garza (Woodbury), Ronnie Manis (Anson) and Kyle Young (Lenihan).

Principals in the district were recognized as part of National Principals Month. Board Member Sean Heitmann read the proclamation for National Principals Month. They were presented a certificate of recognition by Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte.

Personnel items
For personnel items approved by the board, click here.

Annual Appointments
The board approved the following annual appointments:
– Brian Bartz as Board Secretary for the District for 2017-2018 school year.
– Cartwright, Druker and Ryden as School Attorney for 2017-2018. John Veldey as collective bargaining counsel spokesman.
– Ahlers, Cooney, PC as Additional Legal Counsel for selected legal issues for 2017-2018.
-Designate by resolution the name and location of Iowa located financial depository institution(s) to serve as the official school district depository/depositories

Policy Review Schedule
Dr. Schutte presented the new board policy review cycle, which is built on a five-year review cycle instead of a three-year cycle. Changes were made to policy 203.1 to reflect the change in schedule. Policy  203.1 will come back at next meeting for board approval.

Board Committee Representatives
The board will look through committees and give their top five choices they want to be on to Board President Bea Niblock. Assignments will be approved at the Oct. 16 board meeting.

Boardroom laptops
The laptops utilized by the board at meetings are approximately 6 years old. Director of Technology Josh Wesley proposed replacing them with Chromebooks. The board gave the approval to move forward with Chromebooks.

2017-18 Strategic Plan
Dr. Theron Schutte presented this new strategic plan for the district including the goals and objectives for the next 3-5 years. Past survey research, open forums and a Thought Exchange survey helped shape the direction of the plan.
The plan has five primary goals: student achievement, staff development, communication & engagement, learning environments and resources. The board discussed the plan and gave feedback to Dr. Schutte.
Target dates will be established for action items within the areas. Updates to the board on plan progress are expected 2-4 times a year.
The board approved the plan as presented.

2016-17- Year End Financial Statements
Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz presented this document, which overall was a positive report on the financial state of the district.
Total revenues for 2016-17 were at $61,067,587 with toal expenditures are at $61,020,018.
“We are still in a good financial position at this time as far as cash on hand,” Bartz said.
The board approved the financial statements as presented.

Special Education Deficit
Director of Special Services Matt Cretsinger said the current special education deficit is at $1.9 million, up from $1.2 million the previous year. Most school districts operate on a special education deficit as funding does not match up with the cost of serving the varied needs of special education students.
“The cost to educate per special ed student continues to rise,” Cretsinger said.
For his presentation document, click here.
Cretsinger asked the board to be able to seek spending authority from School Budget Review Committee for allowable growth and supplemental aid. The levy would be approved by April 15 budget.
The board approved the action.

Title 1 Chromebook RFP
Director of Instruction Dr. Lisa Stevenson and Director of Technology Josh Wesley  presented this item. They sought approval to publish a Request for Proposal to purchase 131 Chromebooks for use by Title I students.
Current Chromebook allocations do not meet the needs of TItle I and there are carryover funds available in the Title I budget. Title I carryover funds will pay for this technology.
Total estimated cost is $59,296 for 131 Chromebooks with licenses, 126 headphones and six carts.
The board approved the publishing of an RFP for the Chromebooks.

Board Room Video Upgrade
This is a continuation from the last board meeting. Josh Wesley requested a video portion to upgrade the board room. Previously, the board approved the audio upgrade portion to upgrade the sound for those in attendance at the meetings and those watching the delayed broadcast. The board approved to upgrade the video system, 4-1, for a cost of $21,195 from local company Mechdyne.

Board Policies

First reading
414.8- Absence Without Pay – Classified – Changes to align with Iowa Association of School Board policy- Changes will come back before board.

Initial Review
203.1 -Formulation, Review and Revision of Policy – T0 be adjusted based on change in review schedule of policies- Marked as amended.
414.10 – Classified Employees Immediate Family Illness- Recommended changes align with IASB language. To come back before board.
414.11 -Classified Employees Personal Leave-  Change number of days that can be accumulated in sick leave from 200 to 140. To bring back before board.
414.12 -Temporary Disability –  Marked as reviewed – no changes recommended
415.1- Drug and Alcohol Testing Program- “Adding superintendent or designee,” change transportation phone number to reflect 641 area code. To come back before board.
415.1- E1- Drug and Alcohol Testing Program Notice to Employees – New policy- To come back before board.
415.1- E2 -Drug and Alcohol Program and Pre-Employment Testing Acknowledgment Form- New policy. To come back before board.
415.3- Relations to Pupils and Public- No changes
415.4- Classified Staff – Professional Development Leave- Changes to reflect IASB language- To come back before board.
801.6- Selection of an Architect-  Policy deleted (not required).

The next regular board meeting will be at 5 p.m on Monday, October 16 in district offices.

From Board President Bea Niblock
“For a number of years, the district has been without a strategic plan. But, the district now has a ‘road map’ to steer our journey. The board adopted 5 goals last night that make up a living document to give us a direction, a focus, a path to provide students with the best possible educational experience.

Goals surrounding achievement, staff development, communications, learning environments and resources are the basis for the plan. Strategies to accomplish these goals have been identified and metrics have been determined to define the growth that we are making toward the achievement of the 5 goals.

The strategic plan is meant to be a ‘living document’ that can be amended and changed as determined. If we find that the strategies selected are getting us the desired results we will be encouraged, but, at the same time, adjustments can be made if we determine that something is not working as planned. Our district has begun a journey guided by a strong strategic plan.” – Bea Niblock

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