Dundy County Stratton Schools
March 13, 2017 6:00 PM
Board of Education Regular Meeting
1. Opening Procedures
Rationale

 

1.A. Call to order
1.B. Roll Call
1.C. Excuse absent member(s)
2. Open meetings law
Rationale

  1. The Board of Education reserves the right to enter into Closed/Executive Session for 1) the protection of public interest or 2) the prevention of needless injury to the reputation of an individual, and the individual has not requested a public meeting. When making a motion to enter into Closed/Executive Session, the member making such a request should be as specific as possible keeping the previously listed stipulation in consideration. 
  2. If the Board is in agreement, a motion maybe to enter into Closed/Executive Session to 1) discuss a personnel matter, or 2) for the prevention of needless injury to the reputation of the individual, or 3) to discuss litigation and for the protection of the public interest.
  3. Action concerning matters discussed in Closed/Executive Session will be acted upon in open session

3. Awards and Recognitions
Attachments
4. Public comment
Rationale

Welcome to the Dundy County Stratton Public Schools Board of Education Meeting.  The Board welcomes citizens to attend board meetings to become acquainted with the programs and operations of the district.  Members of the public are also encouraged to share their ideas and opinions with the Board during the agenda item labeled “Public Items”.  Comments or questions from the audience at any other time during the meeting except for the agenda item “Public Items” will out of necessity be declared out of order.

The Nebraska Open Meetings Act prevents the board from speaking to a matter that is not on the agenda.  Please understand that the board may be unable to address your issue during the meeting.  It is not permissible for the board to comment on items not listed for the protection of the public’s right to know and participate in the discussion of items that do come before the board and stated appropriately in the meeting agenda.  

During this agenda item “Public Items” we ask that you abide by the following rules:

Public Comment Protocol and Procedures

  1. Anyone wishing to speak to the board on specific agenda items or on other topics relevant to board business must complete a Public Comment Request Card and submit it to the Board President prior to the opening of the meeting.   The public will only be recognized and their comments heard at Item “Public Items” on the board agenda.  The total time allotted for the public comment will not exceed thirty minutes and each member of the public will be allotted not more than five minutes to address the Board.  If a group wishes to speak, please designate one spokesperson for the group.

  2. Please state your name and the topic you are addressing before you begin.  

  3. Speakers are asked to direct their questions and comments to the chair.  A member of the Board of Education or the Superintendent may direct clarifying questions to the chair, but the board will not under any circumstance enter into a debate with any the member of the public.

  4. Speakers may offer objective criticism of district operations and programs, but the Board would encourage members of the public to address complaints concerning individual district personnel through the proper chain of command.  The chair may direct the member of the public to the appropriate means to address concerns brought before the Board; however, the board will not respond with action but will take comments under advisement and direct the comments to the appropriate staff member to address outside of the board meeting.

  5. Please remember that is a public meeting for the conduct of business of the Dundy County Stratton Public School District. Offensive language, personal attacks and hostile conduct will not be tolerated. You should further be advised that there is no legal protection for any comments that are made. 

  6. As stated in NEB. REV. STAT. § 79-570 Class I, II, III, IV, or VI school district; president; meetings; maintenance of order.  

    If any district meeting of a Class I, II, III, IV, or VI school district any person conducts himself or herself in a disorderly manner and persists in such conduct after notice by the president or person presiding, the president or person presiding may order such person to withdraw from the meeting and, if the person refuses, may order any person or persons to take such person into custody until the meeting is adjourned.

  7. As stated in NEB. REV. STAT. § 79-571 Class I, II, III, IV, or VI school district; meetings; disorderly conduct; penalty. 

Any person who refuses to withdraw from such meeting on being so ordered as provided in section 79-570 or who willfully disturbs such meeting shall be guilty of a Class V misdemeanor. 

5. Consent Agenda
Recommended Motion

Motion to approve the consent agenda as presented with the exception of removing items _______

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  Motion to approve the consent agenda as presented. passed with a motion by Mr. Mike Blecha and a second by Mr. Brad Baney.

Member Votes
Mr. Brad Baney Yes
Mr. Mike Blecha Yes
Mr. Jason Frederick Yes
Mrs. Amy Haines Yes
Mr. Craig Kerchal Yes
Mr. Kevin League Yes
Mr. Kent Lorens Yes
Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger Yes
Mr. Shad Stamm Yes
5.A. Verification of publication and notice
Rationale

To verify that notice of the meeting was given by publication in the Benkelman Post, a legal newspaper for Dundy County Stratton and by written notice to each member of the board, the designated method of giving notice

Recommended Motion

Motion to verify the publication and notice of the meeting was properly given

5.B. Adoption of the agenda
Rationale

To adopt the agenda of this meeting. The board reserves the right to change the order of items within the agenda.

Recommended Motion

Motion to adopt the agenda

5.C. Approval of the minutes
Attachments
Recommended Motion

Motion to approve the minutes of the February 13, 2017 regular board meeting

5.D. Payment of the bills
Attachments
Recommended Motion

Motion to approve the payment of the General Fund bills in the amount of $460,821.09, Activity Fund bills in the amount of $13,737.76 and Lunch fund bills in the amount of $11,769.28.

5.E. Advanc-ED Accreditation
Rationale

After conversation with the board last fall we have notified the Department of Education that we will be switching our accreditation from Advanc-ED to the Department of Education. This change will not affect anything we do or how we go about running and improving our school, it will simplify how we have to go through the process. 

Recommended Motion

Motion to change from Advanc-Ed Accreditation to the Nebraska Department of Education Accredition

5.F. Records disposal
Rationale

We have boxes of old records to dispose of. Before they can be destroyed we must advertise so that people can have the chance to claim them. We are asking you to approve this disposal. 

Recommended Motion

Motion to advertise the disposal of old educational and special education records and to dispose of any unclaimed records in the legally prescribed manner

6. Business Meeting
6.A. Financial Report
Rationale

Presentation of the financial status of the district, balances in various funds, recent/impending activity therein, anticipated expenses and planning for future considerations.

Attachments
Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  Motion to approve the financial report as presented. passed with a motion by Mr. Jason Frederick and a second by Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger.

Member Votes
Mr. Brad Baney Yes
Mr. Mike Blecha Yes
Mr. Jason Frederick Yes
Mrs. Amy Haines Yes
Mr. Craig Kerchal Yes
Mr. Kevin League Yes
Mr. Kent Lorens Yes
Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger Yes
Mr. Shad Stamm Yes
6.B. School Calendar 2017-2018
Rationale

The proposed calendar is attached.

Attachments
Recommended Motion

Motion to adopt the 2017-2018 school calendar as presented

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  Motion to adopt the 2017-2018 school calendar as presented. passed with a motion by Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger and a second by Mr. Kevin League.

Member Votes
Mr. Brad Baney Yes
Mr. Mike Blecha Yes
Mr. Jason Frederick Yes
Mrs. Amy Haines Yes
Mr. Craig Kerchal Yes
Mr. Kevin League Yes
Mr. Kent Lorens Yes
Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger Yes
Mr. Shad Stamm Yes
6.C. Drivers Education
Rationale

This agenda item to make some determination regarding how we offer drivers education. When we no longer had a certified drivers education teacher on staff, we contracted with Rich Wilson and moved the class to summertime. We now have a staff member who is certified. The questions are: 1. Do we want to offer drivers education in the summer or school year. 2. If we offer it in summer do we continue to use Rich or our staff person? If we offer it during the school year our staff member is the only option. 

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  Motion to remove as a graduation requirement, offer it in the summer, and have the district pay for the cost. passed with a motion by Mrs. Amy Haines and a second by Mr. Jason Frederick.

Member Votes
Mr. Brad Baney No
Mr. Mike Blecha No
Mr. Jason Frederick Yes
Mrs. Amy Haines Yes
Mr. Craig Kerchal No
Mr. Kevin League Yes
Mr. Kent Lorens Yes
Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger Yes
Mr. Shad Stamm Yes
6.D. Teacher resignation(s)
Rationale

We currently have one resignation and I anticipate another prior to the meeting. 

Attachments
6.D.1. Teacher resignation
Rationale

We have a resignation from Paige (Stute) Strand. We have already interviewed prospective teachers for Second Grade at Benkelman Elementary. 

Attachments
Recommended Motion

Motion to accept the resignation of Paige Strand and thank her for her two years of service to the district.

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  Motion to accept the resignation of Paige Strand and thank her for her two years of service to the district. passed with a motion by Mr. Craig Kerchal and a second by Mr. Kevin League.

Member Votes
Mr. Brad Baney Yes
Mr. Mike Blecha Yes
Mr. Jason Frederick Yes
Mrs. Amy Haines Yes
Mr. Craig Kerchal Yes
Mr. Kevin League Yes
Mr. Kent Lorens Yes
Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger Yes
Mr. Shad Stamm Yes
6.D.2. Teacher resignation
Rationale

We did receive a second letter of resignation. 

Attachments
Recommended Motion

Motion to accept the resignation of Kathy Blecha and thank her for her 16 years of service to the district

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  Motion to accept the resignation of Kathy Blecha and thank her for her 16 years of service to the district passed with a motion by Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger and a second by Mrs. Amy Haines.

Member Votes
Mr. Brad Baney Yes
Mr. Mike Blecha Abstain
Mr. Jason Frederick Yes
Mrs. Amy Haines Yes
Mr. Craig Kerchal Yes
Mr. Kevin League Yes
Mr. Kent Lorens Yes
Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger Yes
Mr. Shad Stamm Yes
6.E. Teacher contract
Rationale

We may have a contract to approve for the second grade position. 

Recommended Motion

Motion to offer a teaching contract beginning for the 2017-2018 school year to ____________________

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  Motion to offer a teaching contract beginning for the 2017-2018 school year to Morgan Fisher. passed with a motion by Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger and a second by Mr. Mike Blecha.

Member Votes
Mr. Brad Baney Yes
Mr. Mike Blecha Yes
Mr. Jason Frederick Yes
Mrs. Amy Haines Yes
Mr. Craig Kerchal Yes
Mr. Kevin League Yes
Mr. Kent Lorens Yes
Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger Yes
Mr. Shad Stamm Yes
6.F. Lawn care
Rationale

We have the option of having Pankonin Ag Services take care of portions of our grounds or doing it ourselves. We do have a staff member with a license for those applications. 

6.G. Pre-school in Stratton
Rationale

When the pre-school in Stratton ceased to operate it was missed by parents there. While we have no desire to compete or close a local pre-school, we do need to look at our options. This agenda item is to allow us to discuss those potential ideas and see what we can do to provide or assist in the provision of that educational opportunity for our students. 

6.H. Lunch: summer serving program
Rationale

This item is to allow for the discussion of possible summer lunch offerings. 

6.I. Lunch: meat serving program
Rationale

We continue to work on serving farm beef and other from the farms meats. We would like to do a trial run before the year ends. 

6.J. NASB Legislative proposals
Rationale

NASB is seeking legislative proposals or ideas from it's membership. The deadline for submission of those proposals is July 1. I have attached the 2017 NASB Advocacy Handbook, which contains the timeline and the NASB's standing position on various issues. If we wish to make a proposal to NASB the board should approve those requests. 

Attachments
6.K. Legislation
Rationale

Item intended for the discussion of legislation pending or being debated in the Nebraska Legislature. Bills of note per NRCSA

LB 409 (Groene) was heard in the Education Committee last Monday.  No one testified in support of the bill, which Senator Groene expected.  The bill was intended to reduce costs to match the estimated reductions that may be needed in the state budget given the budget shortfall projections for the coming two years.  Our opposition was based upon how lesser equalized districts were particularly reduced, the focus on net option enrollment reduction, the reduction in base spending, and the appearance of forcing districts to increase their property tax request.  There is a competing bill, LB 540 that takes a different approach to the same end.  This bill has been introduced by GNSA and will be heard later. 
 
LB 640 (Groene) remains his view of how to reduce property taxes and have a source of replacement funds.  This has certainly received attention, both positive and negative.  He has communicated his thoughts to you in his regular emails.  Several Friesen bills also address similar possibilities.  Everyone should keep a close eye on the rural efforts to reduce property taxes, ag in particular, as they are combined with finding replacement funds. 
 
LB's 312 and 313 (Briese) and 563 (McCollister) are among the bills promoting changes in sales taxes as the replacement funds for property tax reductions.  The collaboration Nebraskans United for Property Tax Relief and Education has generally focused on sales taxes as the crucial back-fill replacement for reduced property taxes.  This is a tough sell in an environment of cutting taxes, but we are fortunate that we have rural senators that have a firm grasp on supporting their rural schools and recognize the back-fill is critical. 
 
LB 484 (Kolowski) creates the School Finance Review Commission that sets a two-year window to examine the revenue and needs side of TEEOSA, even to the point of major changes.  NRCSA has supported these efforts for obvious reasons dating back ten years.  There is a growing dissatisfaction among school representatives and senators with TEEOSA.  There is an implied directive to examine other state's approaches as part of this complex discussion.  Our concern will be the membership of the commission and their ability to recognize bias, address the formula for all students, and work toward something that does not get tinkered with every year or two. 
 
NRCSA has not testified on the school choice bills.  Our opposition on those, including the grading of schools, is simply based upon rural districts are capable of working toward excellent education for all students that come.  We do not see slicing off public funds, vouchers, charters, etc. as productive for the statewide education effort.  Our option enrollment and our availability to have home and private schools seem to us to provide very well for the state's rural students.  
 
Regarding reading improvement and school district grading bills, NRCSA believes additional testing is not the path to a continually improving education.  The Nebraska Department of Education and local districts are aggressive on the constant effort to educate our students and meet the challenges of the future. 
 
I will always remind everyone that one does not have to speak on every bill, whether in support or opposition.  The hearings offer opportunity and I welcome your participation if you choose to testify.  Prioritizing is well underway, senators and committees have until March 9.  That is always a benchmark as far as what has a stronger path to move forward.  The other side is that education is not the only item of tremendous significance. 
 

7. Reports
7.A. Technology report
7.B. Elementary principal report
Attachments
7.C. Secondary principal report
Attachments
7.D. Transportation report
Attachments
7.E. Superintendent report
Rationale

  1. Summer maintenance: We have some preliminary summer maintenance ideas:
  1. Northeast High School parking area/sidewalk drainage
  2. Lighting around the buildings
  3. Floor finishing (doing gym floors ourselves)
  4. Drainage on south end of football field
  5. Complete the fencing around the Benkelman Elementary playground

Attachments
7.F. Board and committee reports
7.F.1. Board information
Rationale

  1. Meeting reports:

    NRCSA Legislative: Shad

    LB 312 &313 Testimony: Kent, Shad

     

  2. Upcoming meetings:
    1. NASB School Law Basics: Gering Mar. 7, Kearney Mar. 14, Norfolk Mar. 16, Lincoln Mar. 21
    2. NRCSA Spring Conference: Kearney March 23-24
    3. NSBA National Conference: Denver, Co, March 25-27
    4. NASB SWEAT (School Wellness Education & Training): Kearney April 12-13

 

Attachments
7.F.2. Finance/Budget/Legislation committee
7.F.3. Transportation/Facilities/Grounds committee
7.F.4. Curriculum/Activities/Staff Development committee
7.F.5. Americanism committee
7.F.6. Negotiations committee
8. Adjourn
Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  Motion to adjourn at 7:55 passed with a motion by Mr. Mike Blecha and a second by Mrs. Amy Haines.

Member Votes
Mr. Brad Baney Yes
Mr. Mike Blecha Yes
Mr. Jason Frederick Yes
Mrs. Amy Haines Yes
Mr. Craig Kerchal Yes
Mr. Kevin League Yes
Mr. Kent Lorens Yes
Mrs. Sandy Noffsinger Yes
Mr. Shad Stamm Yes