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August 12, 2013 Budget Hearing & Regular Meeting

The budget hearing for the 2013-14 budget was held prior to the regular monthly meeting on Monday, August 12. The general fund budget, which is based upon a “weighted” student enrollment , will be very close to last year’s budget, mostly due to the frozen budget allowed by consolidation. 2013-14 is the third of four years that the general fund budget base state aid per pupil and weighted FTE is frozen. If any of the current year weightings exceed the frozen weightings, the district is allowed to use the higher number.

Weighted student full time equivalency (FTE) includes the total of: (1) count of students in grades 1-12; (2) one-half the students in kindergarten; (3) a formulated count for low enrollment, vocational education, transportation, and at-risk students; and, (4) special education students. The weighted FTE in 2012-13 was 941.4. The estimated weighted FTE for 2013-14 is 947.3. The annual State Department of Education audit will occur later in the year after the September 20 official student count date. The combined weighted FTE for the former two districts was 1144.8 in the 2010-11 school year.

Preliminary calculations show that the district will net an additional $916,531 in the general fund as a result of the frozen budget this third year of the consolidation. Cost cutting measures continue to be implemented to offset the deficit the district will see at the end of the four-year freeze.

The total mill levy rate will remain virtually the same for patrons in each of the former districts. The general and supplemental general funds combine mill levy will be 31.95 as compared to 31.92 last year. The bond & interest mill levy for the elementary building will remain the same at 7.04.

Employment contracts were approved for four new support staff members. New special education paraprofessionals hired were: Chad Jones and Linda Buss. Two new classroom aides were also hired – Shirley Hammes and Kimberly Sudbeck, both part-time. These staff members will fill positions created with the resignation of former personnel with the exception of Shirley Hammes, who will work part-time in the pre-school due to an increase in the number of students.

A former student of NVHS and current employee of Cummins, Kent Henry, approached Mr. Bruce Stanley about the donation of a diesel engine for instructional purposes. The donation was approved by the board.

Members approved 43 out-of-district students who will attend Nemaha Central Schools this school year. Forty-one of the students reside in USD 113 and two reside in USD 380.

A discussion was held regarding the current practice of providing two after-activity practice bus routes if eight or more students per route sign up to ride. If less than eight students sign up, the route is not run.  During discussion, members requested that Supt. Kohlman provide data for 2012-13 including the cost, miles driven and the number of times the route was run. Members will use this data when they revisit the issue next school year. It was the consensus to follow the past practice for the current year.

During review of the Strategic Plan, Supt. Kohlman stated that he has added eleventh graders in the final voting process. Gary Niehues suggested including students from the Sts. Peter & Paul 2013-14 8th grade class in the voting process. Discussion followed. Gary Niehues moved that the Sts. Peter & Paul 8th grade students be included in the voting process. Dave Clements seconded the motion; motion carried, 5 voting aye and 2 voting nay. Roger Hermesch and Ilene Enneking cast the opposing votes.

Following a lengthy discussion about colors and mascot, Jean Placke moved to approve the colors purple and a blue that fits with purple, and silver; Ilene Enneking seconded the motion. Before the vote,Jason Hammes requested further discussion. Jean Placke then withdrew her motion and moved that purple and blue be the primary colors beginning next school year. Ilene Enneking seconded the motion.The motion carried, 6-1. Dave Clements cast the opposing vote. Clements voiced opinion that the district should have totally new colors.

The board next addressed the name of the buildings. Owen Zinke moved that the name be Nemaha Central for all buildings starting 2014-15. Dave Clements seconded the motion; motion carried, 7 voting aye.

The board approved the update of several policies for the district as recommended by the Kansas Association of School Boards.

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