All posted Board of Education minutes are unofficial until approved at the succeeding regular BOE meeting.
EXCERPTS of USD #384 Regular Board of Education Meeting
A Regular Board of Education meeting for USD #384 Blue Valley was held on August 9, 2021 at 6:00 p.m. in the Board Room. Members present were Mitch Innes, Stephen Corkill, Reo Shultz, Tim Innes, Jason Hartman, and Ginger Blaske. . Administration present was John Cox, Superintendent, Marion Mazouch, Middle School/High School Principal, and Melody Pfaff, Board Clerk.
CALL TO ORDER: President, Mitch Innes called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m.
APPROVE THE AGENDA: The Board approved the agenda with following changes: Change 7. Recognitions of Students to 7. Recognitions of Students and Staff; Add 8. Special Reports.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE: Board and guests recited the Pledge of Allegiance.
WELCOME GUESTS: President, Mitch Innes welcomed our guests.
OPEN FORUM: Luke Dumler addressed the Board regarding youth being allowed to practice in the school gyms. This was not allowed last year due to CoVid. April Brenner reiterated and added kids lost a critical year last year not being able to practice. Randy Dumler did not like the District Pandemic Response Plan that the district has published. The district is not following other local 1A schools plans that she has read. It is too hot for kids to be riding the bus with a mask on. She felt that surveys should be done to find out what parents want. Jason Anderson stated that Blue Valley did an excellent job with outbreaks during the 2020-2021 school year but mask wearing was not necessarily handled very well. District should not dictate. Not enough credit is given to the kids. They are very aware of what is going on. Kelli Nelson is glad to see that masks are optional in classroom. Safety is important but, what are the repercussions to our kids of wearing masks. April Brenner asked the question “Is wearing masks on buses federally mandated and what is the consequences for not following it?” The Board thanked everyone for their input.
POSITIVE BOARD COMMENTS:
1. It is very positive to see parents attend board meetings and support their kids.
2. The welcome back breakfast for staff went well. Kelly Gillespie did an excellent job with her presentation.
3. Online enrollment has gone very well. The patron feedback is positive.
RECOGNITION OF STUDENTS/STAFF: Anthony Meals was in attendance to present highlights from the Agriculture Education department. Jasper Spillman has done great writeups in the youth section of the Riley Countian. Vet camp went very well with 30 students attending. The leadership retreat will be held August 13 and August 14. Thank you to Stuco and Booster Club for the support.
Lexi Vogt placed fourth out of 100 participants at FCCLA Nationals. Congratulations to Lexi!
Ruth Hutson presented exciting things happening in the biology department. Blue Valley will be a piloting school with mber biology. This is an exciting opportunity for Blue Valley which is the smallest school participating. Ruth will be co-horting with 30 teachers throughout the state during this two-year project. The Board thanked Ruth for her dedication for the betterment of Blue Valley.
SPECIAL REPORTS: It is a federal mandate to wear masks on public transportation and school buses fall in that category This is just a bus mandate not a classroom guideline but, that is subject to change. Blue Valley’s district office is in Riley County therefore the district will follow the Riley County Health Department’s guidance.
Drew Venum presented a letter from Pediatric Associates regarding the recommendation of wearing masks. This is good to see local doctors’ recommendations. He understands masks are not ideal but, for the safety of others it is a small sacrifice to help protect those that have a compromised immune system. Wearing masks has proven lower transmission. Those countries that are requiring masks be worn are not spreading the disease as rapidly.
Reo Shultz thanked everyone for their input. They are all fantastic points. Keep in mind that the Pandemic Response Plan is a living document. We are all navigating this but, want what is best for all students.
Jason Hartman stated that the goal of the board is to make kids follow what they are required to do in school. We appreciate everyone’s input.
PRINCIPAL REPORTS: Marion Mazouch is recommending that cross country is offered for middle school and high school students. The cost to the district would be the coach’s salary and transportation expenses. The middle school and high school students would be able to train together.
SUPERINTENDENT REPORT: John Cox reported on the following items:
· Propane and diesel have been contracted with Wanklyn Oil.
· The district mission statement has been printed and will be put in frames and hung up before the first day of school.
· The administration schedule will be published soon. Mr. Schreiber will need to continue to help Sheri Shultz with counseling duties.
· The new teacher in-service went very well and a chance to build comradery.
· Welcome back celebration was a success. Kelly Gillespie did a fantastic job leading the in-service.
· The remainder of the in-services for the week will be routine items.
· Water fountains have been installed and are ready for use.
· The back-to-school night will be held on Tuesday, August 11.
· A full report on baseball and softball will be given at the September board meeting.
· The leadership retreat is an awesome idea and will be exciting to get some feedback from students.
CONSENT AGENDA: The Board approved the Consent Agenda as follows:
a. Approved Minutes of: July 12, 2021 Regular Board Meeting
b. Approved Receipts
c. Resignations - None
d. Approved Hirings: Miranda Depenbusch – Agriculture Education Paraprofessional; Emily Cassel-Middle School Head Volleyball Coach; Anthony Meals-Cross Country Coach
e. Approved Out of District Student: Allison O’Shea
District Goals: The district goals have been updated and the leadership team will compile a finished copy to distribute to teachers for input and feedback.
Re-opening Plan: The re-opening plan has been published.
Mission Statement Signage: Signs have been made and will be posted in all buildings and classrooms.
Pandemic Response Plan: The only update to the Pandemic Response Plan is adding the federal mandate to wear masks on the buses.
Drainage at McCormick Elementary School: The contractor will complete the work at McCormick Elementary School by August 16. The process was slowed down due to permit issues which have been resolved. A bubbler system will be installed to funnel the water. An additional $3,505 is estimated to add the bubbler system. The board discussed the additional money and would like John Cox to visit with the contractor about reducing that figure.
Approve Warrants/Transfers: The Board approved the warrants/transfers as presented.
Executive Session: The board did not need to hold an executive session.
Board Policy Updates: The KASB recommended Board Policy Updates have been distributed to members. Each member needs to review the policies so board action can take place at the September meeting.
Budget Publication: The Board approved the 2021-2022 Budget for publication.
Revenue Neutral Rate: The Board approved the 2021-2022 Revenue Neutral Rate for publication.
Annual Tour of Buildings: The board set September 13 at 3:45 p.m. for the annual tour of the district buildings.
Bus Driver Insurance: Superintendent John Cox proposed offering health insurance to bus drivers as a benefit. The Board approved offering bus drivers a full paid single insurance plan.
Retreat Items: The retreat was a great opportunity for the board to come together and plan the upcoming year. Great feedback from everyone.
Premium Pay: The board discussed using ESSER2 funds to compensate staff. Superintendent John Cox will present a proposal at the September board meeting.
District Activity Signup: A document has been distributed to the board for sign up to attend district events.
Huddle Camera System: The board discussed the installation of a huddle camera system. This would allow patrons to view all activities held in the gym and on the football field. The cost is $8,000 a year. The resolution would surpass what the district was able to provide last year.
State Assessment Data: The Board reviewed the 2020-2021 state assessment results. The numbers are good and comparable to the 2019-2020 school year.
BVBA Volleyball Practice: The board discussed the protocol for groups using the buildings. A cleaning protocol checklist will be made for each group using district facilities to follow. Only coach and players will be allowed at this time.
Future Agenda Items:
a. Board Policy Updates
b. Premium Pay
c. Budget and Revenue Neutral Rate Hearing
Adjournment: Meeting adjourned at 8:53 p.m.