May 9, 2012
Baldwin USD 348 Board of Education
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Respondents to an online survey clearly favored academics as the Baldwin school board’s top priority as it updates the district’s strategic plan. Baldwin Superintendent Paul Dorathy shared the results of the survey with board members at their Monday meeting. The superintendent said 407 district parents, students, staffers and community members completed the survey from Oct. 29 to Nov. 6.
Baldwin City Recreational Commission representatives update school board on community center project
BCRC board set to consider at its meeting Wednesday the hiring of an architect to develop preliminary plans and cost estimates for a community center.
Meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. at the Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center
Baldwin USD 348 Superintendent Paul Dorathy is hoping twice as many students, district staffers, parents and patrons will complete an online survey on district priorities before midnight Friday.
The Baldwin school board were told Monday it will cost more than $1.7 million to address problems the high school’s aging heating and air conditioning system.
The Baldwin school board agreed at a special meeting Saturday to survey district staff, patrons and residents as part of its update of the district’s strategic plan.
Three members of the Baldwin school board could not have run for their seats if a bill now being considered by an interim legislative committee had been in place when they were elected.
In a normal year, Monday would have been an important date in the Baldwin school district’s fiscal year. The state has long set aside the date of Sept. 21 as the official date public school districts report their enrollment numbers for school funding purposes. However, this year school districts are being funded through block grants frozen at the level of state funding they received a year ago.
While making quick work of its short agenda Monday, the Baldwin school board started the ball rolling on what promises to keep members busy in the months ahead. The board scheduled a work session to discuss an update of the district’s strategic plan for 7 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 3. The strategic plan was last updated three years ago.
Meeting starts at 6:30 at BESPC
Note: Board meeting starts at 7:45 p.m. rather than the normal 6:30 p.m. The 2015-2016 budget hearing is scheduled for 8 p.m.
The Baldwin school district agreed Monday to publish a proposed 2015-2016 budget that would maintain the district’s current property tax levy of 65.704 mills.
Baldwin school board approves publication of proposed 2015-16 budget that maintain current mill levy
City Council approves 2016 budget
If Baldwin school district taxpayers want a hint of how Monday’s Baldwin school board budget discussion may go, they need look no further than the school district to the north.
Meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. at the district office, 715 Chapel St.
Baldwin school district parents and guardians are encouraged to enroll students this month via the district’s upgraded online enrollment program, which became functional Monday.
The Baldwin school district is rebooting its little-used virtual school program with the hopes of attracting more students.
With the long Kansas legislative session concluded with no additional cuts to the state’s school districts, the Baldwin school district on Monday offered raises to its employees.
The Baldwin school board approved Tuesday a contract with MDH Turf to upgrade two non-varsity football fields on the Baldwin High School/Baldwin Junior High School campus. MDH will improve the north field used for junior high school games and BHS freshman and junior varsity teams and the one to the south used for practice.
Football practice field bids on agenda. Note meeting moved to Tuesday because of BJHS advancement ceremony on Monday night.
On Monday, the Baldwin school board completed adjustments needed for the district to balance its 2015-2016 budget with the state’s new block grant school funding legislation. Gov. Sam Brownback signed the block grant K-12 funding legislation into law last month, which will freeze state funding to school districts at 2014-2015 fiscal year levels.
Although it has considered them, the Baldwin USD 348 Board of Education apparently won’t take two cost-cutting measurers other state school boards have approved as they deal with the state block grant school funding plan, which will provide no additional state money to help with classroom needs during its two-year duration.
Meet Kelley Bethell-Smith, who is running unopposed for the at-large position on the Baldwin USD 348 Board of Education
Meet the candidates running for the contested Baldwin USD 348 District 3, Position 3 seat.
The Baldwin school district in the next month will survey those parents paying for in-town busing to learn how many would retain the service should its price increase three-fold. For four years, the school board has debated maintaining in-town busing as state funding has failed to keep up with the district’s increased costs.
Thanks to a timely bond refinancing, the Baldwin school district will see level funding for the next two years with no additional demands on taxpayers. At the Baldwin school board meeting on Monday, Baldwin Superintendent Paul Dorathy and district financial director Cynde Frick updated the board on the consequences of the school finance block grants that are about to replace the state’s 22-year-old school finance plan.
The plan of Gov. Sam Brownback and legislative leaders to fund K-12 education through block grants will reduce state funding to Baldwin USD 348 by $100,000 the current school year and require a local mill levy increases to avoid passing on a similar cuts to the district’s budget the next two years, Baldwin Superintendent Paul Dorathy said.
Baldwin Unified School District Board of Education March 23 agenda 6:30 p.m., Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center, 500 Lawrence St.
The Baldwin school board was given several options to consider Monday should it want to increase parking at the Baldwin junior high and high school campus. Superintendent Paul Dorathy said the discussion of parking lot options developed from the board’s ongoing update of the district’s facility plan, which will define the future needs and uses of USD 348 buildings and properties.
The Baldwin school board directed administration Monday to find cuts to approved spending to help address the Kansas Legislature’s reduction of current year K-12 education funding. Baldwin Superintendent Paul Dorathy and district financial director Cynde Frick told the board that the Legislature reduced current K-12 funding in response to the state’s $344 million 2015 fiscal year revenue shortfall. The adjustment would cost the Baldwin district $75,000.
BALDWIN CITY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT 348 6:30 p.m., Feb. 16, Elementary Primary Center 500 Lawrence Street
With the terms of four Baldwin school board members set to expire at the send of their terms on July 1, there was the chance before Tuesday’s filing deadline that the board might soon look very different. Short of successful write-in campaigns, that won’t happen. Two incumbent board members who chose to stand for re-election, Nick Harris in District 1, Position 1 and Sandy Chapman in District 2, Position 2, will be unopposed on the April 7 general election ballot. First-time board candidate Kelley Bethell-Smith will also be unopposed for the board’s at-large seat Sheryl Gill currently holds.
Meeting moved to Tuesday for MLK Jr. Day
Baldwin superintendent says additional won't flow immediately from court ruling on education funding
Despite last week’s court ruling finding the state’s K-12 education funding constitutionally inadequate, Baldwin USD 348 Superintendent Paul Dorathy doesn't expect to see additional money coming the district’s way soon.
It could be an interesting first three months of 2015 in local politics with the majority of seats on both the Baldwin City Council and the Baldwin USD 348 Board of Education up for grabs. Just how interesting will be revealed in the next four weeks.
School to start Aug. 18.
The Baldwin school board agreed Monday to put some added money into a sidewalk to the school along U.S. Highway 56 in the hopes of leveraging additional dollars from Douglas County for the project. Baldwin City Councilwoman Christi Darnell brought the issue to the board, with a request it add to the $20,000 it has budgeted for the project that would construct 2,000 feet of new sidewalk next spring from Eleventh Street to the Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center.
Meeting to be at 6:30 p.m., Monday, Dec. 15, at Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center
Although a Nov. 21 Baldwin school board special meeting was called to consider an offer for the closed Vinland Elementary School, board members signaled a willingness to sell other piece of surplus property.
In a presentation to the school board Monday, Baldwin High School Principal Rob McKim said the best way to improve ACT scores in the district was to enroll more students in the high school’s more challenging courses.
The Baldwin school board took time Monday to start discussion on how the district would respond to a cut in the amount in budgeted state aid for the current school year. Superintendent Paul Dorothy said there remained a lot of uncertainty concerning possible responses to the state’s woeful financial picture and it wasn’t yet known if the state would be forced to reduce funding for K-12 education.
Baldwin High School Principal Rob McKim was instructed Monday to bring back a recommendation to the district school board about how his school should offer an ACT Test preparation class for the 2015-16 academic year.
Baldwin USD 348 had 1,428 students in preschool through high school classrooms on Tuesday, the date the district officially reported its enrollment numbers to the Kansas Department of Education for state per-pupil funding.
Baldwin district finds 'in-town' transportation fee structure violates state statute; refunds coming
After receiving word from Kansas Department of Education officials that the district's transportation fee structure violated state statute, the Baldwin school district will refund fees wrongly charged some “in-town” students to ride buses to and from school.
In a departure from the board's regular routine, the meeting will be on a Wednesday and at the Baldwin Elementary School Intermediate Center
There was no one in the room Monday to comment on the Baldwin school district's 2014-15 budget public hearing, but there may be a few cheers around town with news the budget will reduce the district’s property tax levy by 3.16 mills. With the 5-0 vote (board members Chad Christie and Sandy Chapman were absent), the board approved the $20.3 million budget as it was published in The Signal.
The Baldwin school district is still very motivated to sell the house on the old Rhulen property west of the soccer field if a buyer can be found who is willing to move the house. Superintendent Paul Dorathy said that stipulation seems to be the sticking point. He has shown the one-story wood-frame house on seven or eight occasions and one potential buyer was interested enough to have an inspector check out the house.
Meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. Monday at the Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center
Traditional enrollment will be from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, Aug. 8, for Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center, Baldwin Elementary School Intermediate Center and Baldwin Junior High School.
About 20 percent of Baldwin school district students have been enrolled for the coming year since the district's new online option. Superintendent Paul Dorathy told Baldwin school board members Monday that 419 students had been enrolled online since the option became available July 1.
Thanks to a Kansas Supreme Court ruling in March, the Baldwin school district will ask less of its taxpayers in the coming fiscal year. At its Monday meeting, the Baldwin school board approved publication of the 2014-2015 budget that would reduce the district’s overall property tax levy by 3.492 mills.
Baldwin USD 348 Board of Education agenda for July 21, 2014 Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center Community Room 6:30 p.m
Baldwin USD 348 Superintendent Paul Dorathy said the local district did not need a larger personnel pool, which was apparently the motivation behind a recent change in teacher licensing. Last week, the Kansas Board of Education voted to to allow state school districts to hire individuals as teachers without a teaching degree or certification if they could demonstrate professional experience in the subject matter they would be instructing.
The Baldwin school district is making progress in its effort to correct a problem with the competition running track at Baldwin High School. The outside lane of the running track, which was built as part of the 2008 bond issue, was not installed at the right width. The board was vocal last fall about making progress to resolve the issue.
As has been the recent custom, the Baldwin school board was presented last week with a first draft of the district's capital outlay plan in advance of July’s 2014-2015 fiscal year budget considerations. The draft that district financial operations director Cynde Frick shared with the board on June 17 broke out budgets of both 7 and 8 mills for the capital outlay fund. The district has the authority to levy up to 8 mills to support capital outlay, but boards in recent years have chosen to set the levy at 7 mills.
IPads have become so important at Baldwin High School that is essential problems are addressed early to maintain teacher enthusiasm for using the devices in the classroom, the Baldwin school board was told Tuesday. Baldwin High School Principal Rob McKim gave the board an update Tuesday the high school’s first year iPad experience. The district handed out newly purchased iPads to 445 high school students last August.
The Baldwin school district and a local technology company plan to start testing a one-of-a-kind online enrollment program this week for a planned July 1 roll out. Mike Bosch, CEO of the Reflective Group, told the Baldwin school board Tuesday that the Baldwin City company and the district would carry out a mock enrollment to fine tune for the districtwide roll out of the online software.
The Baldwin school board agreed Tuesday the two football fields the junior high and high school sub-varsity teams use west of the Baldwin High School are in bad shape and need to be upgraded, but did not agree to allow those teams to play games on the district’s soccer field.
Apparently, Baldwin High School math teachers are not alone in their concerns about the less-than-challenging content of contemporary math textbooks.
Although it is facing a tight 2014-2015 budget that will likely reduce the number of teachers in the district while increasing class sizes, the Baldwin school board passed Monday on a possible opportunity to secure more revenue from its local option budget.
The normally routine matter of Baldwin board members approving classroom materials district faculty recommends for their curriculum hit a snag Monday when two board members questioned the well-used appearance of textbooks proposed for use in high-level math and science classes.
WIN CITY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT 348 BOARD OF EDUCATION AGENDA Baldwin Elementary Primary Center 500 Lawrence Street April 21, 2014 6:30 p.m.
The Baldwin school district would see about $30,000 more in state general fund aid should Gov. Sam Brownback sign a school funding bill the Kansas Legislature passed earlier this week. Baldwin USD 348 Superintendent Paul Dorathy said the bill took away some existing funding, added $14 in per pupil state aid to local districts and provided "equalization" revenue for poorer districts to help with their local option budgets and capital outlay funds.
Property sale on agenda for both meetings
By this summer, parents or guardians should be able to enroll their children in Baldwin schools online. Baldwin USD 348 Superintendent Paul Dorathy said the district was working with Reflective Group, the creator of the district’s operating software system, on the development of the online enrollment service
The Baldwin school board started dealing with the district’s 2014-2015 budget crunch by passing on some of its transportation fees to in-town student bus riders and reducing teacher positions through attrition.
Anyone looking for a definitive answer about what the ruling the Kansas Supreme Court released Friday on K-12 education funding means for the Baldwin City school district will have to ask someone other than Superintendent Paul Dorathy.
The Baldwin USD 348 Board of Education has called a special board meeting for 6:30 p.m., March 6, at the district office, 715 Chapel St.
A bill to kill Common Core educational standards in Kansas has Baldwin School Superintendent Paul Dorathy concerned a $100,000 district investment could be lost.
In anticipation of another summer of grim budget deliberations, the Baldwin school board started consideration Monday on how it might find additional dollars or cut costs. District director of financial operations Cynde Frick told the board that Gov. Sam Brownback's proposal presented last month at the start of the legislative session would provide the district wtih just $30,000 in added state aid for the 2014-2015 school year.
Federal health care reform will require the Baldwin school district to find $100,000 in next year’s budget to provide health insurance to uninsured employees. The added expense will come from the East Central Kansas Cooperative in Education. Patti Bishop, ECKCE director, said the special education cooperative currently doesn’t offer health insurance to the 108 para-professionals who work in the Baldwin, Wellsville and Eudora school districts.
The Baldwin school board voted 5-1 on Tuesday to start school two days early next school year to help equalize the fall and spring semesters. The vote comes seven months after the board agreed to shorten the school year by five “student-contact days.” With that decision, schools opened five days later in August for the 2013-2014 school year.
Meeting starts at 6:30 in Primary Center
Board approves district funding girls soccer program
District receives rare 'clean' audit
Move made after requests for proposals
School board to have special meeting Monday on submittals
Current attorney retained for ongoing cases
Hungry squirrel causes delay
Lawrence Journal World story sparked interest buildings
Board rolls back capital outlay funding to 2012-13 level
Board delays decision on where to deposit district's operating account
Hearing for 2013-14 budget at 8 p.m.
Baldwin board asks superintendent to investigate new legal representation during annual reappointments
Nick Harris re-elected board president
District to see only $18,000 in classroom money for 2013-14
The proposal would require the district to pay only 25 percent of the officer’s salary and benefits, or $15,908 annually.
2013-14 budget consideration, annual board reorganization highlights of meeting
Move one of a number of budget-trimming measures the board approved Monday
Days trimmed from August.
Architect's estimate exceeds money available
Baldwin Junior High auditorium remodel to be discussed
Large first-grade class for next year prompts request
Next year's fees, discussion of elementary class sizes among items on agenda
Kruger prevails in contested race, Huntoon wins seat through write in
Ebel, Kruger contest District 1, Position 4 position
Sequester, Affordable Care Act and state tax changes of concern
Owners don't yet have plans for $90,000 purchase
Law vague regarding write-in winners
School and all activities cancelled
Project to be bid at end of March
475 iPads purchased for high school students
Board to receive iPads recommendation
City approaches district about restarting school resource officer program
The deadline for candidates to get their names on the April 2 ballots for Baldwin City Council and school board passed this week. But there’s one big hole.
Republicans look for possible constitutional amendment in response to ruling
The spring elections for Baldwin City Council and USD 348 Board of Education got more interesting in the last week.
Two council seats, four board positions expire this year
Action will provide immediate property tax relief
The Baldwin school board and the district teacher’s union ended an impasse Monday as the board approved a contract that provides teachers a 1.4 percent salary increase and an immediate $400 stipend.
Reviews, drills coming
BJHS Auditorium also on agenda
Collapsed sewer pipes cause move to Baker's Collin's Center
Meeting 6:30 p.m. Dec. 12 at district office
Move could save district as much as $600,000
Baldwin City residents pleased with the end of detours with the completion Friday of construction on North Sixth Street should be prepared for construction closing down another main entrance to the city next construction season.
Superintendent instructed to contact firms interested in marketing buildings
Meeting for workshop on facilities
Six cases have been confirmed
Budget impact limited
All district schools earn standard of excellence in reading, writing
Meeting to be Oct. 10
Bus video camera bids on agenda
BHS performance contrasts with stagnant state results
The Baldwin school board unanimously approved Monday the district’s 2012-2013 budget after shaving a mill of support from the capital outlay fund.
Action passes on 4-3 vote
Kit Harris tells Baldwin school board South Gym better than proposed space in junior high auditorium
Board to consider capital outlay 2012-2013 funding, which has 8 mills of support in published budget, before approving 2012-2013 budget.
Assignments approve July 17
Board makes no change to in-town busing policy
District overall valuation increases 'slightly'
Publication of 2012-13 budget on agenda
As the 2012-2013 budget season nears, the Baldwin school board reviewed Monday a draft five-year capital improvement plan that would set next year’s capital outlay budget at 8 mills.
Remodel estimated to cost from $475,000 to $800,000
Contract busing proposal, facilities and capital outlay budget on busy agenda
Neosho County interested in leasing gym at Vinland Elementary
Building and grounds to be sold to Lighthouse Baptist Church of $200,000
As special meetings go, Baldwin’s school board meeting Monday will have a busy agenda.
Board to discuss proposal at June 11 special meeting
Plan to provide all BHS iPads starting with 2013-2014 school year
Use of remaining bond money to remodel old junior high auditorium discussed
Facilities, capital outlay on agenda
Tony Wedel leaving district for job opportunity
The USD 348 Board of Education special meeting Monday on district facilities ended on a to-be-continued note, but not before it became clear there is little support for constructing a center to house district offices, maintenance, a bus barn and other functions.