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Discipline is an addition at Hillsboro Elementary School

Schools may benefit from new state funding formula

News editor

Hillsboro Elementary School always has had rules about what kids can and can’t do at school, but now they’ve been written down along with discipline strategies for this fall’s children and parents.

Principal Evan Yoder told board of education members about the changes at Monday’s meeting.

“I didn’t have a whole lot in the handbook about discipline, and I had a couple of questions about being consistent with various things,” Yoder said. “This just kind of lays it out as the things you shouldn’t do in school, here’s what we can do to get it corrected, and here’s what will happen if we don’t get it corrected. I think it’s as positive as it can be for a discipline policy.”

Parents won’t find many new rules, Yoder said. Having rules and consequences written down will help with communication when situations arise.

“In the handbook formerly it said things you don’t bring to school — electronic toys, knives — but that’s all it said,” Yoder said. “I had a couple of knives that were brought to school. They were being mischievous; they weren’t brought in to do malice. Now when I talk to that parent I can say, ‘Here’s what can happen when your child brings a knife to school,’ and it lays it out.’”

Superintendent Max Heinrichs said grade schools in other districts had created similar written rules and procedures. Yoder will have leeway to adapt discipline in individual circumstances, but the rules also place limits on his options.

“He can’t do more than what it says; he’s held to that,” Heinrichs said.

Funding

Preliminary estimates based on a pending funding formula show Hillsboro could receive $45,000 more in state aid for 2-17-18, Heinrichs said.

If Gov. Sam Brownback agrees to the formula, the state Supreme Court will have to rule on its constitutionality. If the court finds the formula to be insufficient, districts could be forced to stop operating July 1.

Closings are unlikely, Heinrich said, but formula shortcomings could be passed along to the next legislative session to be fixed.

District budgeting and contract negotiations are largely on hold until state funding issues are resolved, Heinrichs said.

In other business:

  • Policy on what to do when a child’s balance due for meals exceeds $10 was revised.
  • Luke Moore was hired to do summer painting for $8.50 an hour, 40 hours a week, for 10 weeks.
  • A slate of supplemental activity assignments was approved.

A special meeting at 6 p.m. Monday at the district office will address budget revisions.

Last modified June 14, 2017

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