Archive for Thursday, June 29, 2006

Meal prices stay same in White’s swan song

June 29, 2006

Several items that affect next year's budget were approved at Supt. James White's final Baldwin Board of Education meeting Monday night.

White is officially retired as of Saturday, after seven years in the district.

"When you've worked in a district and seen many changes, it does make it sad to move on," White said. "I do think the district is in good shape and should continue its tradition."

At the meeting, the school board took action on meal prices, a new vehicle and a computer lease.

The only subject that was not voted on was the proposed track that would go around the Baldwin High School soccer field. There will be a bid opening at 10 a.m. Thursday for the facility north of BHS.

White presented the board with a list of meal prices from all other districts around the state. After the board reviewed the list, White gave his recommendation.

"Anita (Faddis, food service director) and I talked after looking at that and thought the recommendation should be to subsidize where needed and leave the price the same," White said.

The Baldwin district did rank very high on the list on meal prices, so the board voted 5-0 to keep the prices the same for next year. Board Members Blaine Cone and Scott Lauridsen were not at the meeting.

"I don't see any reason for us to have the highest price in the state," Board Member Ande Parks said.

Board Member Ruth Barkley agreed.

"I know Anita works very hard to deliver the best products you can for the kids," Barkley said. "It's just a tough time with food prices escalating the way that they have. If there is any way we can defray those costs, we are going to try and do that. We are already charging plenty according to other districts in the state."

At the beginning of the meeting, White added a vehicle purchase to the agenda. He received a bid from the state for a new Ford Taurus that would only cost between $11,000 and $12,000.

"The only problem is it takes two or three months to build it after we order it," White said. "Do you want me to order a new one or try and get a trade-in car."?

The board then voted 5-0 to approved the purchase of a new Taurus.

"Let's get a new Taurus," Board Member Alison Bauer said. "I would prefer to get a purple one."

Barkley thought the car would be a good purchase.

"I thought it was a good value and it is definitely something that the district needs," Barkley said. "We've been limping for a long time."

The last major decision from the board was about a computer lease from Apple. This item was recessed from two weeks ago.

The district will be purchasing 180 computers for $244,776. It will have a four-year lease from Apple.

Technology Director Steve Hemphill said the lease follows the technology plan, as far as getting computers to BHS and the Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center.

"It all fits in with the current need of technology that we have in the district," Hemphill said.

The beginning of meeting was the republished budget hearing. The district will be republishing the driver's education and food service budgets, because both spent more money than the budget called for. The board approved the republished budget's 5-0.

Other action at the meeting included accepting the audit from last meeting. The board forgot to do it two weeks ago, but approved it 5-0 Monday.

Near the end of the meeting, Barkley told the board that the policy review group met last week and has begun to review the new policies that were adopted.

"We are very fortunate to have a committed group of people," Barkley said. "It's pretty much an undesirable task, but the most important thing that the board does is that policy. There is a great group that is committed to reviewing the policies and making them our own, because they do need to be personalized for the district.

"Our goal is to work with the new superintendent, administrative team and the board to get that completed as quickly as possible," Barkley said.

The final piece of action was the personnel report, which was approved 5-0. The two resignations were Joe Serna (BHS baseball coach) and Nikki Burnett (BHS assistant volleyball coach).

There were several hires. Those were Diane Pittenger (Baldwin Junior High School cheerleading coach), Bernie Bierman (BJHS assistant football coach), Ronda Schulte (BJHS QPA co-chair), Sheryl Burggraf (BJHS QPA co-chair), Amy Cooper (BJHS target area chair for problem solving) and Kathy Johansen (BJHS target area chair for reading and writing).

The next school board meeting will begin at 7 p.m. July 10 at the District Office. It will be the first meeting for new Supt. Paul Dorathy.

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