Archive | March, 2018

March 19, 2018 Board Meeting

20 Mar

Woodbury Elementary School Principal Anel Garza presents an update on the school’s dual language program to the board. Also pictured are Woodbury instructional coach Julie Thede, left, and teacher Becky Jacobson.

Brian Bartz was recognized for his work for the district as Director of Business Operations and Board Secretary.  This was his last board meeting with the district as he heads to the Marion independent School District.
“Unquestionably the district has been in great hands,” Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte said of Bartz’s work.

The new video “Proud to be Diverse” was shown at the meeting. Recognized was MHS teacher Jocelyn Frohwein, who wrote the poem years ago and the video produced by Communications Director Andrew Potter shows students throughout the district reciting the inspirational poem “I AM.”


MHS state speech participants Bianca Nuradrina, left, and Phoebe Osgood, presented their state-qualifying speeches.

Public hearing
The board held a public hearing for the sale of obsolete chromebooks and tablets. No public comments were made.

Personnel items
For personnel items approved by the board click here.
Personnel items included retirements of Merlyn “Kaye” Ruport, who is currently in food service at Lenihan and worked for the district for 21 years and Sammi Jo Luse, current instructional coach at Miller, who has worked  in the district for 19 years.

Woodbury Elementary School Presentation
Woodbury Principal Anel Garza, teacher  Becky Jacobson and instructional coach Julie Thede presented this for the school.
The focus of the presentation was on the dual language program Woodbury, particularly how they use the bridge program. The premise is that content can be taught in one language and bridges into the other language, without having to reteach the entire content again in a different language.
“The bridge is a phenomenal time to see as a teacher,” Jacobson said.
They then showed this video of this work in action at Woodbury.

Bobcat College & Career Readiness Dashboard Update
Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte presented on this item including this flyer with more information. Dr. Schutte said this is based on the national effort to redesign college and career readiness for students with certain indicators.
No one test score or grade point average defines readiness, Schutte said.
Students who meet the criteria would be recognized as being Bobcat Ready or college and career ready through a recognition on their transcript.
The board approved the Bobcat Ready, College and Career Readiness dashboard.

College and Career Readiness and Senior Dismiss
MHS Principal Jacque Wyant spoke on this presentation, related to college and career readiness and the current practice of senior dismissals. Jacque said they continue to focus on Individual Career and Academic Plans, which exposes students to career exploration in high school.

As far as senior dismissal goes, it will not go away but proof of work experience, volunteer experience or other activities as they leave school for open periods will need to be provided. “We just want their senior dismiss to be very purposeful,” Wyant said. This was an information item only.

2016-17 Audit Report
Jason Noonan from auditors Nolte, Cornman and Johnson to presented the 2016-17 audit report for review.

New Policy for Student School Board Representatives
Dr. Schutte presented this policy, with an idea of having 3 high school students serve as board representatives starting this fall.  Dr. Schutte said he  thinks it will be great leadership experience and provide student voice on issues the board discusses. Students would not be voting members or be part of closed sessions and other confidential matters. The board agreed that this was an idea that is welcome. This will come back at next meeting as a first reading board policy

Marshalltown Community School District Hall of Honor Program
Dr. Schutte proposed this program he would like to start and Alumni Hall of Honor program which will recognize graduates who have gone on to do great things.
“With as many great things that our graduates have done I think it would be very good for us to start recognizing our graduates” Dr. Schutte said.
The board approved the hall of honor program.


Paulette Newbold, right, is sworn is as the new board secretary-treasurer by Board President Bea Niblock.

Appointment of Secretary-Treasurer
Paulette Newbold, the new Director of Business Operations, was appointed as Board Secretary-Treasurer and sworn in. Paulette joins us on Monday, April 2.
She has served as Business Director and Board Secretary at the Boone School District for the past 10 years.

Board Book Study “Teaching with Poverty in Mind” by Eric Jensen
The board continued its book study discussion this time with Chapter 4.

eRate Updates
Josh Wesley, Director of Technology, presented this update on bid tallies and bids awarded which will utilize eRate funds for wireless access points, internet access and a new firewall for the district.
For wireless access points a bid was awarded to SMS Tech Solutions  for 306 wireless access points for $153,91.60. With the eRate discount the district’s estimated cost is $30,792.32.
For internet access, a bid was awarded to Mediacom Business for a three-year contract at $60,500. With the eRate discount the district’s estimated cost is $12,100.
For the firewall, a bid was awarded to Heartland Business Systems for $55,276.58. With the eRate discount the district’s estimated cost is $11,055.32.

Board Policies
First reading
503.120-R- to become new number 504.8-R – Private Activity Camps Regulation- Accepted as amended, waived second reading
504.1 now 507.1- Student Health and Immunization Certificates. Changes as recommended by lead nurse, Approved and waived second reading

Initial review
504.4- now 508.6- Use of Bicycles-  Marked as reviewed
504.5 now 502.10 -Use of Motor Vehicles- Changes to align with IASB policy. To come back before board.
504.6 -Work Permits- Policy deleted
504.7 now 507.10 -Weather-Related School Closings, Delays, and Early Dismissals. Rewrote based on current weather communication, to come back before board
504.8- becomes 507.6- Student Insurance – 504.8 and 504.9 made into this policy – (to delete 504.9) To come back before board

The board went into closed session to discuss the sale of real estate.  The board also held an exempt session for negotiations.

The next regular meeting of the board is at 5 p.m. on April 2 in district offices.

From Board President Bea Niblock
“Dr. Schutte presented the board with the possibility of adopting new policies which would allow up to 3 high school students (sophomores, juniors, seniors) to participate as non-voting board members.  To apply for these positions, students must fulfill certain requirements and demonstrate leadership, listening and communication skills.

The board is interested in seeking out and considering student ideas, viewpoints and opinions regarding the district’s educational programs.  The student representatives would be eligible to participate in discussions, but not vote, during all regular board meetings held in open session.  Not only would students bring ideas to the board, but they would also be responsible for communicating board decisions and information back to the student body.

The board looks forward to the participation of student representatives in September.” – Bea Niblock



March 5, 2018 board meeting

6 Mar

Healthcare Careers Club plans trip to Kansas City


Marshalltown High School Dean of Students Dan Terrones talked to the board about a planned trip to Kansas City for the Marshalltown Area Healthcare Careers Club. Also pictured are students in the club, from left, Aracely Aguilera, Juliana Ibarra Lemus, Daisy Klaas and Geovany Rivera

MHS Dean of Students Dan Terrones, who leads the Marshalltown Area Healthcare Careers Club, presented a request for a trip to Kansas City along with students in the club. They have a trip planned to Kansas City from April 5-7 to get on-site learning at the Truman Medical Centers. For more information on the trip, click on this link. Terrones said he is excited about the real world experience the students are going to get on this trip. The trip, which is paid through fundraising and contributions from the McFarland Clinic Physicians Group,  was approved by the board.



Three members of the MHS Class of 1977 presented a donation check to the district totaling $1,600. From left, Ann Isgrig, Jeff Isgrig and Grant Brintnall presented the check with $800 going to the Roundhouse Phase II project and $800 going to the fine arts programs.


Members of the Class 3A state runner up boys bowling team were recognized along with coaches Roger Taylor and Stacy Galema. Present from the team were Ray Wiegand, left, and Lucas Kramer. Also present was ShayeLyn Pickett representing the girls team.  Coach Taylor called it a fantastic season for the bowlers.

For personnel items approved by the board, click here.

Paulette Newbold was approved as the next Director of Business Operations and Board Secretary.  Paulette has been the Director of Business Services and Board Secretary/Treasurer of the Boone Community School District since 2008. Prior to that, she was the District’s Accountant/Office Manager, a Board member, and a Certified Public Accountant for an accounting firm.  She will begin at MCSD on April 2, replacing Brian Bartz who is leaving at the end of this month.

2019 MHS graduation date
The Marshalltown HIgh School graduation date for 2019 was approved for Sunday, June 2, 2019.  


Board Book Study
The board continued its book study discussion on “Teaching with Poverty in Mind,” this time with Chapter 3 of the book. Chapter 3 is titled “Embracing the Mind-Set of Change.”
One of the many takeaways from the chapter is the fact how exposure to the arts can help expand the mental capacity for children coming from low income homes.

E-Rate Bid Tally
Director of Technology Josh Wesley said bids received for wireless access points, firewall and internet services will need further clarification from vendors.
Due to the timing of this and the E-Rate funding deadline, he proposed the board exercise policy 705.1, which allows the superintendent to approve purchases on the board’s behalf. He will submit a summary to the board at a later meeting.

MCSD Phone System Upgrade
Mr. Wesley also presented this item. He said the current district phone system is 13 years old, is no longer supported and replacement parts are difficult to obtain. He asked for approval to do a Request for Proposal for a phone system upgrade. The board approved publishing an RFP as presented.

Auditor Selection for the 2017-18 School Year
The district received four bids for auditors and business office staff went through a matrix on the bidders. They recommended auditor’s Nolte, Cornman and Johnson of Newton for a 1-year contract for $15,700. The firm has served as auditors for the district for several years.  It was approved by the board.

Certified Budget for 2018-19
Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz presented this as an information item on the budget projection. The budget needs to be approved by the county auditor by April 17. Taxable valuation is $1,044,212,286, which is up approximately $25 million. The proposed tax rate for 2018-19 is $17.95 per thousand valuation, which is steady from the previous year. A public hearing for the certified budget will be held at the April 2 board meeting.

Board Policies

First reading
503.3 becoming 504.3 -School Publications. Approved as amended and waive second reading
503.2 becoming 504.2- Student Organization. Changes as suggested by attorneys, approved as amended and waived second reading

Initial reading
503.11 – becomes 504.7 -School Sponsored Camps. Marked as reviewed
503.12 – becomes 504.8  Private Activity Camps- Marked as reviewed
503.12-R- becomes 504.8R-Private Activity Camps Regulation- Slight change, to come back before board.
504.1 becomes 507.1- Student Health and Immunization Certificates- District Nurse making proposed changes- to come back before board
504.2- becomes 507.3-Exclusion for Communicable Diseases. Marked as reviewed
504.3- becomes 507.4- Injury or Illness at School.  Marked as reviewed.

The board then went into closed session for a quarterly evaluation of the superintendent. The next regular board meeting is at 5 p.m. March 19.

From Board President Bea Niblock
“ I want to take this opportunity to talk a bit about my colleagues on the board.  They are, indeed, a professional and caring group of people who come to each board meeting to do what they feel is best for all kids.

At last night’s board meeting, we continued our discussion of Eric Jensen’s “Teaching with Poverty in Mind.”  If you had the opportunity to listen to that discussion, you would have heard the passion in the voices and comments of the board members.  They ask thoughtful questions to understand. You would have known that this is a group of individuals with compassion and concern for providing the best education possible for every student in the district.

It is a pleasure to sit on the board with such a great group of individuals.  They truly believe that all children can learn and it is our responsibility to provide the environment and opportunities for each child to do that.” – Bea Niblock