• Last modified 3288 days ago (July 14, 2010)


Hillsboro school board tables renewing membership in lawsuit group

Want to make decision with full board present

Staff writer

A decision to renew membership in Schools for Fair Funding, a group that is suing Kansas about school funding was tabled Monday by USD 410 Board of Education.

If the district renews membership, its dues for the 2010-11 school year would be $1,864.

Board member Eddie Weber said he had a problem continuing in Schools for Fair Funding because the state made an effort to improve school funding.

Board member Rod Koons said district residents have spoken to him about Schools for Fair Funding more than any other school topic in the past year — more than cutting school programs or staff.

Superintendent Steve Noble said improved school funding passed in the legislature by a slim margin. The state also has shown lack of long-term willpower to provide school funding, he said.

Board member Gary Andrews recommended tabling the decision until the next meeting Aug. 9. He said he wanted to have the full board present to decide. Board members Dale Klassen, Mark Rooker, and Joe Sechrist were absent.

In other business:

  • Vince Jantz of Jantz Construction showed board members drawings of a proposed remodeling of the new district office, which currently is occupied by Midway Motors. Remodeling will begin after Midway Motors moves to its new location, currently under construction.
  • Meal prices for 2010-11 remain unchanged from 2009-10. Breakfast costs $1.25, and lunch costs $1.90 for kindergarten through fifth grade, $2.25 for grades six through 12, and $3.50 for visitors.
  • The price for drivers’ education was increased from $120 — or $60 for students eligible for reduced-price meals and $25 for students eligible for free meals — to $150 or $75 for students eligible for reduced-price or free meals. The original recommendation was $150 across-the-board, but Koons said he didn’t want students to miss out.
  • Textbook fees for 2010-11 will be $15 for kindergarten and $25 for all other grades. Students eligible for reduced-price meals will pay $10 for kindergarten or $15 for all other grades. Students eligible for free meals will pay nothing for kindergarten or $5 for all other grades.
  • Fees for negligent damage to school-issued laptops were established. The fees are $25 for damage under $50, $100 for damage $50 or more, and replacement cost if a computer must be replaced.
  • Retiring employee Ralph Janzen received a plaque commemorating 21 years in the district’s maintenance department.
  • KK Office Solutions will provide and service copiers for the district for four years at an annual cost of $34,052. Digital Office Systems bid $38,654. The district makes 1.56 million copies per year.
  • The board voted to renew membership with Kansas Association of School Boards for $7,082 and to continue as part of the organization’s legal assistance fund for $1,400.
  • Hourly pay rates for short-term noncontracted employees will remain the same for 2010-11.
  • The substitute teacher rate will remain the same at $87.50 per day or $43.75 for a half day. The rate is higher than average in the area, and the district doesn’t have problems finding substitute teachers, Noble said.
  • Maintenance and transportation director Keith Goossen presented mileage reports and vehicle replacement plans. District vehicles were driven about 7,000 miles fewer in 2009-10 than in 2008-09. The district plans to replace two SUVs in 2010-11. The next planned bus replacement is in 2012-13.
  • Accounting firm Swindoll, Janzen, Hawk & Loyd will perform the district’s audits for 2009-10, 2010-11, and 2011-12 at the same rate as before. The firm also will conduct a single audit, required for federal funds, for a minimum of $5,000.
  • Contracts were approved for middle school yearbook sponsor Michele Melton, elementary and middle school English-as-a-second-language aide Marcia Findeiss, and culture club sponsor Jill Hein.
  • The district plans to use a student teacher from Bethany College assigned to music teacher Lynn Just as the pep band sponsor. High school principal Max Heinrichs wants to meet the student teacher before making a recommendation to the board.

Last modified July 14, 2010