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November 12, 2012 BOE Meeting

November 14, 2012


    Items revolving around the Strategic Plan highlighted the Nemaha Central Board of Education meeting on November 12.  Patron Cheryl Deters addressed the board regarding two items on the Strategic Plan – use of district-owned facilities and mascots & colors. Cheryl stated that she was speaking on behalf of some patrons on the west side of the district. She said that she doesn’t feel money is an issue as she has seen no hardships in the district yet and with that in mind, asked the board to consider having the entire middle school (grades 6 through 8) at the Baileyville facility on a permanent basis. In her opinion, students should be involved in this decision as well as choosing a new mascot and colors. She asked the board members to give all schools at least one more year which would allow time to embrace the end and also time for the students to blend. President Gary Niehues thanked Cheryl for her comments.

    Supt. Kohlman reported that the administrative team members had met with representatives from the Kansas Association of School Boards and Greenbush Educational Service Center to discuss facilities and the process to be used to decide the future of those facilities. Mr. Kohlman said the administrators were told that direction is needed before any studies or procedures can begin. The administrators, therefore, came up with three options that Mr. Kohlman shared with the board members and those in attendance. The options were as follows: (1) All 6th – 8th graders at the B&B facility; (2) Close the B&B facility at the end of this school year with students attending facilities in Seneca; and (3) Transition over time with the B&B junior high closing followed by the high school. Supt. Kohlman asked the board members for their opinions of the options - whether one should be eliminated, a fourth option added, or changes to the suggested options.

    Supt. Kohlman handed out once again, the effect of the frozen budget that the district will maintain the current and next two fiscal years. Based on the current year’s weighted student full time equivalency (FTE), the district’s general fund budget nets an $870,000 increase as a result of the frozen budget guaranteed by the State due to consolidation. Kohlman stated that the Board of Education and the administration will be developing a plan to accommodate this loss which very likely will increase before the 2015-16 fiscal year; either due to lower enrollment and/or a change in State funding.

    The timeline for review of the results of the studies conducted before making a final decision was also discussed. There were several minutes of discussion and different wording to the options suggested. The final consensus of the board members was to change the wording in the three options as follows: (1) grades PK – 5 at Seneca, 6th – 8th grades at Baileyville, and 9th – 12th grades at Seneca; (2) Close the B&B facility with all students attending facilities in Seneca; (3) Transition over time with the B&B junior high closing followed by the high school closing. A board member work session to review the results of the studies will be scheduled sometime in January, 2013.

    Supt. Kohlman led discussion regarding the request of several USD 113 Prairie Hills patrons for a land transfer to USD 115 and whether it was the desire of the board members to make a request to USD 113 for those tracts of land. In looking at the maps presented last spring, the members were in agreement that the request would not include all land owner requests. It would be the intent that all the land be contiguous with USD 115 and not include any land east of “O” Road. It was suggested that an affidavit be required of those land owners before making the request to insure the property owner is serious about the request. The consensus of the members was that an official request be made to USD 113.

    Mr. Kohlman also reported that due to the loss of Kan-ED funding, beginning in December, the district will be paying between $700 and $1,000 a month for internet service at B&B.

    Michael Hill, NVHS Art and Drama instructor, made a presentation on theater and what students
can learn through being part of a performance. Some students and parents voiced opinions in support of theater. Mr. Hill stated that he has voluntarily been directing a spring production for four of the last five years and asked the board to now approve compensation for the position. The board voted unanimously in favor of the request.

    Members approved a lease for two copiers for B&B. The two copiers will replace current machines which are no longer working or for which parts are not available. Century United submitted the low bid at $800 per year.

    January 16, which was originally set as a part day for students with an early dismissal time of 1:15 will now be a full inservice day for teachers. Students will not attend school this day.  Other items approved by the board were: a supplemental contract for Dennis Hermreck as NVHS boys’ basketball practice coach; Kelly Coup as Campus Facilitator for the PEP Grant; Ashli Niehues as Authorized Food Service Representative; request for bus transportation for a United 4 Youth group activity; and the fiscal year independent audit by Long CPA, Lawrence.

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