Archive for Thursday, October 11, 2007

Board meeting laden with reports

October 11, 2007

Baldwin School Board members heard several reports at their monthly meeting Monday night.

The reports that were given covered the district's curriculum, financial situation and architect's update. All were presented at Monday's meeting, which saw little, to no action.

Supt. Paul Dorathy gave his monthly curriculum report, which included information on science and health curriculum. His main item was the MAP (Measure of Academic Progress) assessments.

At the August meeting, Dorathy originally reported the district is looking into purchasing the MAP assessments to replace several other standardized tests. On Monday, he reported that the district is continuing to look into the new tests. He also said most of the teachers welcome the new assessment.

"The preliminary feelings have been very positive," Dorathy said. "Most of the staff wants us to take a deeper look into it before diving into it. A few staff members have some concerns, but we are moving along with those."

Dorathy also reported things are also moving along smoothly with the science and health curriculums. He said the science curriculum is almost finished and the teachers will be making textbook recommendations later this year.

He said the district is trying to align the health curriculum with state and national standards. They are holding a meeting on Nov. 14 to further discuss the curriculum.

Another report Monday night was the financial update. Cyndi Frick, director of financial operations, presented her annual report.

Frick reported the 4-year-old program recently enrolled a couple of more students and is not self-funded. She also said the district received some of its tax revenue in September and the first pay period of the year went well.

"We had the first payroll of the year and it went smoothly," Frick said. "We had to make sure nothing went wrong with the new staff members. I was very pleased."

The final report of the night was an update from the architects. John Fuller and Kevin Greischar gave a brief report on how the facilities' meetings have been going.

"We are close to creating a proposal ready for the school board," Fuller said. "We hope to have a proposal for you within the next month or so. Then we'll be taking that back and revising that to fit your needs."

Fuller and Greischar were concerned about the attendance at the meetings, which has slipped to fewer than 20 people. They were hoping for nearly 50 people at each meeting.

He isn't sure how to attract more people to the meetings, but he joked about getting district parents' attention.

"The only time I've gotten phone calls from parents in this community is after we talked about closing Marion Springs or Vinland or what we might do with those schools," Fuller said. "We need to strike that kind of nerve, but about a different subject, and get those people here to the meetings."

Board Member Scott Lauridsen said most patrons will probably wait to see what the bond issue might look like before expressing their opinions.

"I think a lot of people are sitting back waiting to see what recommendation we make," Lauridsen said. "It's easier for people to sit back and say why not, instead of helping you build it. We will get more input when we look like we have an idea of what we want."

The facilities' committee met Wednesday night. There will be a story in next week's Signal reporting on the meeting.

After executive session Monday, the board accepted the personnel report. It included the resignation of Art Cederholm as Baldwin High School custodian. The hirings included Brooke Shorb (Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center para-professional 4-year-old program), Amy Cooper (Baldwin Junior High School Target Area Chairperson), Sheryl Burgraff (BJHS Building Co-Chairperson), Ronda Schulte (BJHS Building Co-Chairperson), Danielle Augustine (BHS Sophomore Class Sponsor), Katherine Allan (BHS/BJHS District Accompanist), Jessica Endersbe (BHS Food Service), Jonathan Hofman (BHS Custodian), Coy Weege (BHS Assistant Soccer Coach), Joel Eberhart (BHS/BJHS Assistant Wrestling Coach), Kip Clark (BHS Assistant Wrestling Coach) and Fred Toot (Bus Driver).

The next school board meeting will be at 7 p.m. Nov. 12 at the District Office.

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