EACSD Board of Directors re-organizes for new year

by Susan Cantine-Maxson

The annual re-organizational meeting of the Eastern Allamakee Community School District Board of Directors was held Monday, September 18 along with the board’s regular monthly meeting. The regular meeting was called to order by Heather Schulte, Board President. Board members present included Bobbie Goetzinger, Melanie Mauss, Kelli Mudderman and Bruce Palmborg. Dr. Dale Crozier, Superintendent;  Mary Hogan, Kee High and Middle School Principal; and Marian Verdon, Board Secretary were also present at the meeting. Chad Steckel, New Albin Elementary Principal was absent.

Primary business included the authorization of the minutes from August 21, 2017. The Board then filed and received the Certified Annual Report, the Annual Transportation Report, the Special Education Annual Report and approved the Modified Allowable Growth for Special Education Deficit. Prior to the Board’s approval, Superintendent Crozier explained each report to the Board.

Additional information about the Transportation Report revealed that the cost per mile for the district is similar to last year, and that expenditures went down a little bit in fuel cost. Rental of outside vehicles went down because of the purchase of two used vehicles. The average cost per pupil transported went down, from $1,203 last year to $919 this year. Dr. Crozier noted that Des Moines’ average transportation cost per pupil is less than $50, explaining that the average is based on total number of students in the school district divided by the number of miles traveled. Dr. Crozier said this is why there is an inequity in school funding because transportation is not considered, noting that rural, sparsely populated districts have a higher per pupil cost per student for transportation. He said there have been some legislative bills which have not gotten out of committee to revise the school funding formula to include transportation costs, but so far it has not gotten to a vote.

Marian Verdon explained to the Board that the Special Education Supplement is a complicated report because all funds for special education must be accounted for separately. Costs were higher this year than last year, which was the reason for the application for a modified allowable growth funds to cover the deficit.

The regular meeting was then adjourned and the annual re-organizational meeting was started. During the annual re-organizational meeting, the first order of business was the canvass of the Board Election, which resulted in the re-election of incumbent board members Heather Schulte and Melanie Mauss. Schulte was then selected as board president and Bruce Palmborg was selected as vice-president. The board appointed Palmborg as the IASB Delegate and Legislative Action Network Representative. Schulte was appointed Allamakee County Assessor’s Board Representative. The individuals authorized to sign checks will remain the same as the previous school year and include Heather Schulte, Bruce Palmborg, Janet Heiderscheit and Marian Verdon.

Authorizations included the usual and customary consent Items: bills for September, secretary’s financial statement, and activity and food service reports. New business included authorization to sign a resolution presented by Corey Snitker, Allamakee County Emergency Management Coordinator, which will establish plans for Allamakee County to address any concerns that might present themselves during a hazardous situation, such as a flood or tornado. The plan is to coordinate efforts among several county agencies to help with any red tape for Federal aid or FEMA funds. Snitker said there is no cost to the district but the district would have some say in the formation of those plans. Superintendent Crozier recommended authorization and the Board approved the authorization.

Other new business included a unanimous vote for Keystone AEA District Director #3 for Dr. Bill Withers to continue as the AEA board representative. A contract resignation was approved for Mary Duwe, and many board members remarked that she has always been very helpful and will be missed after working for the district for 12 years. Contracts were approved for Brad Larkin as full-time custodian and for Quinn Brennan as assistant varsity baseball coach.

Principal Mary Hogan reported that the State reports are almost ready to submit and that the comprehensive school improvement plan is in the process of being submitted and data is being sent out to the stakeholders. Information will be posted to the school’s website and will be compiled for the Scribblings newsletter. Hogan said this is also Homecoming week, with the parade scheduled for this Friday.

Superintendent Crozier  told the board that the Director of the Iowa Department of Education, Ryan Wise, would be visiting the Eastern Allamakee Community School District Tuesday, September 19. He will also tour MFL/MarMac and Decorah during his visit. The Iowa Association of School Boards will meet November 15-16 and board members Schulte and Palmborg plan on attending. Dr. Crozier will be making a presentation at the conference about being a shared superintendent, and Kee High School alum and Keystone Area Education Agency (AEA) Administrator Pat Heiderscheit will make a presentation from the AEA perspective. Another retired superintendent from the Sumner-Fredricksburg area will also speak on a different approach to sharing superintendents. Dr. Crozier encouraged board members from both districts to attend the session so they can also present board perspective, as he hopes it will be an interactive session. There is also a smaller session for board orientation in Decorah scheduled for October 18 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Dr. Crozier suggested that Schulte also sign up for the board president’s workshop at the IASB convention in November.

 

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