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STC Schools cut 10 positions

Await State Funding Decisions

May 25, 2011
By Joyce Wiese, News Correspondent
TOLEDO CHRONICLE - Budget concerns have forced the South Tama School Board to eliminate a total of 10 educational associate and other support positions. The actions were approved by board members Ron Hala, Mark McFate, Anne Michael and Michelle Yuska meeting in regular session on Monday, May 16. Member Jackie Dvorak wa absent.

The reduction in force at the end of the current school year includes Holly Backen, pk educational aide / special education, Michelle Davis, pk transportation aide, Dalene Hala in the central office print shop, Jennifer Kucera, high school educational aide, Diane Bidwell, April Farley, Diane Reeder, Cassandra Sokol and Amber St. John - elementary educational aides / special education.

"The Iowa legislature has not settled on the final level of funding for schools this next school year or on the availability of preschool funding. This has left the district in the position of making some difficult and yet necessary decisions about staffing," Superintendent Kerri Nelson told The Chronicle in an email seeking comment.

"We do not anticipate further reductions at this time," Nelson wrote.

Four transfers were approved for the 2011-12 school year including:

•Mary Sherwood will transfer from director of curriculum and assessment to the elementary assistant principal post effective for the 2011-2012 school year.

•Michelle Behounek from the high school library to the secondary library and media integration coordinator position.

•Theresa Fisher from Middle School Dean of Students to the alternative high school, refocus program.

•Pam Thomas will transfer from high school special education aide to middle school special education aide.

Two contracts were approved. Those were for Sarah Skinner as assistant varsity softball coach, effective in June at a salary of $2,862 and Kris Collins for middle school softball coach, effective in May at a salary of $2,120. Ron Hala will be a middle school softball team coaching volunteer.

Resignations were accepted from Brittany Hopkins, 4th grade teacher effective at the end of this school year and Sarah Beyer as Dance Team sponsor, effectively immediately.

In other business on Monday the school board:

•conducted a public hearing on the proposal to increase the current fiscal year budget from $18,688,574 to $19,088,574, an increase of $400,000. There were no public comments. The increase was approved 4-0.

•accepted the bid of Brandon Dvorak, rural Toledo, for $4, 800 for the rental of 40 acres of hay ground south and west of the STC High School. Other bidders were Gerald Husak, Toledo, bid of $1,410 and Kenneth Ward, Chelsea, bid of $4,710.

The STC Community Board of Education met Monday evening with all present except Jackie Dvorak. A Public Hearing was held at 5:30 p.m. for an amendment to the budget as published increasing the total budget from $18,688,574 to $19,088,574, an increase of $400,000. No comments were made so the motion for the amendment passed.

• conduced a second public earing to receive public comments regarding the Board's request to the Director of the Department of Education to commence classes for regularly established elementary and secondary schools prior to September 1, 2011, the starting date specified by Iowa Code. The board requests starting school, both elementary and secondary on Aug. 24. This will allow students who participate in the state fair to have that time and still start a week earlier than the regularly scheduled date. The board then approved set the 2011-12 school calendar. The first day of school will be August 24 and the last day on June 1, 2012. Early out/professional development days are scheduled for the second and fourth Wednesday of each month. Parent teacher conferences are scheduled for Nov. 1 and 3, and April 3 and 5. Professional development days are scheduled for Aug. 19, 22 and 23, Sept. 23, Oct. 21, Jan. 16, Feb. 20, and May 31. These dates are subject to change.

•accepted the bid from Oskaloosa Glass & Millwork in Oskaloosa totaling $21,700 for replacing three entrance doorways at the high school. This was in the five-year plan. The outside entrance to the south educational wing, the entrance doors to the west side of the cafeteria and the entrance door to the "ramp" hallway west of the food service loading dock are included. The successful bidder is required to remove the old doors and install the new ones with a deadline of Aug. 12. Also submitting a bid was Allen Glass Company of Waterloo totaling $22,000.

•accepted the bid of Bolton Hay, Inc., Des Moines, totaling $16,305.29. for a Hobart dishwashing machine to replace the machine in the high school kitchen. Bids included the machine itself, an accompanying tray slide, and delivery of all merchandise. The South Tama maintenance staff will install the machine. Also submitting bids were were Martin Bros. Distributing, Cedar Falls at $16,741 and Rapids Food service Contract & Design, Marion, 16,328.

•approved addition of Algebra I prep course. Denise Fletcher, Roy Frakes and Mary Sherwood, and the math department have been evaluating the math courses offered at the high school for the past year and recommended the course. The group presented a flow chart for review and feel this addition will be an extra plus to the math program.

•Sherwood reported the science department and herself have spent the school year evaluating the curriculum and instructional resources used to teach science in Kindergarten through 12th grade. They have requested $11,924.64 for biology and life science courses, $23,270.64 has for middle school chemistry, 9th grade science and physics, $6,259 for physiology and advanced biology, $729 for environmental science, $7,572 for elementary 2nd - 5th grade FOSS Kits and $75 for sound and light materials, for a total of $49,831.

Article Photos

Kerri Nelson
Superintendent - South Tama Schools



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