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August 13, 2012 BOE Meeting

August 20, 2012

The Nemaha Central Board of Education met for the regular monthly meeting on Monday, August 13. One of the first orders of business was the appointment of Roger Hermesch to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Duane Osborne in May. Mr. Hermesch previously served on the Nemaha Valley school board for eight years. He will begin in September and can file in the 2013 general election to complete the unexpired term which ends June, 2015.

Members heard from NVHS Principal, Pat McKernan, that a meeting will be held later in August with officials from Highland Community College.  Mr. McKernan and other staff members had contacted Highland and Manhattan Area Technical College last fall regarding our students participating in Career & Technical Education classes concurrent with their high school curriculum. In the 2012 legislative session, Senate Bill 155 was passed offering incentives to community colleges, technical colleges, and school districts who have students enrolled in and graduate from that district with an industry-recognized credential in a high-need occupation, as identified by the Kansas Secretary of Labor. Due to this legislation, Highland Community College has expressed renewed interest in offerings to local high school students.

Mr. McKernan also informed the board members that staff at NVHS will implement a Senior Project this school year. The Project will have four phases: (1) a research project approved the Senior Project team; (2) an electronic portfolio; (3) presentation of the portfolio to a group which includes a mentor; and (4) 15 hours outside of school to complete their project in addition to time within the school day. Funding through the Rigorous Programs of Study (RPOS) grant will be used to contract with two outside individuals who will oversee and guide the Senior Project team.

Members continued discussion from the prior month’s meeting regarding transporting out of district students to Sts. Peter & Paul School. Supt. Kohlman informed members that after consulting legal counsel, it was found that the district has no authority to enter another district to transport students to a private or parochial school. Those students can be transported if they come within our home district to be picked up.  The board did, however, approve transportation of Sts. Peter & Paul students to extra-curricular activities at the rate approved at the July meeting.

Members discussed the disposition of the mobile units at St. Benedict. Several options were discussed including keeping the units for storage. The board directed Supt. Kohlman to explore the details of selling the units on the Purple Wave Auction and bring the information to the next meeting.

Supt. Darrel Kohlman led discussion relating to the district’s Strategic Plan. Discussed at length was involvement in Early Childhood Education including day care. The owner of Teddy Bear Day Care recently announced that she will be closing the facility on October 1. Several patrons have contacted board members and Supt. Kohlman regarding the situation. Board members expressed an interest in teaming with other employers in town to determine a solution – at least until the end of the school year. Members directed Supt. Kohlman to organize a community meeting for discussion of the issue.

Members were also informed that they may want to consider an Information Technology director for the future. The district currently contracts with outside firms to perform technology work. Supt. Kohlman stated that it has become more difficult to stay current with the changes in technology using district staff and outside contractors.  Central office personnel will put together a summary of current costs that could be eliminated with the hiring of an IT director.

Several individuals were approved for employment beginning the new school year: James Sudbeck, regular route bus driver; Glenn Osterhaus and Richard Sudbeck, substitute bus drivers; Bridget Davis, Special Education Office Secretary; Angelia Steiner, para at NVHS; Maggie Little, para at NVEMS pre-school; Jennifer Rohlmeier and Deanna Wullschleger, part-time paras at NVEMS pre-school; and Dani Reinecke, 4th grade teacher.

Board policy updates as recommended by the Kansas Association of School Boards were reviewed and after further study by the board members, will be presented for approval at the next board meeting.

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