Residents Urged to Take On-line Survey in Search for New Superintendent
By LYNNETTE FORTH | For The Prairie Advocate News
MORRISON – The search for a new Superintendent of the Morrison Community School District is underway. Board of Education members met for a regular meeting on December 16th with many items up for discussion, one of which involved learning the process and schedule of the plan to begin looking for Dr. Suellen Girard’s replacement at the end of this school year.
Representatives from ExecConnect informed board members of the planning process which includes developing a profile which explains the qualities wanted in a candidate, advertising, deciding on a liaison, and developing focus groups to aid in the selection process.
An online survey will be posted on the District website, available from December 27 thru January 10th with a link for residents to take the survey. The application process will end on January 15th.
ExecConnect Representative Ed Olds of Mount Carroll stated, “With the survey, everybody gets a chance. We have ads on several websites already - 14 so far. You could very likely be ready to name your new Superintendent at the February meeting.”
Board member Erin Luckey replied, “I think we would get more honest responses with a survey.”
Board members decided to form two focus groups which would consist of members of selected committees, that are parents or community members. Olds will be contacting board members, and a special board meeting will be held on January 21, 2014 to adopt a profile.
Kathleen Vegter was in charge of the meeting, due to the recent shoulder surgery of acting President Jim Prombo. Approval was granted for the previously held meetings of regular board meeting of November 25th 2013, finance committee meeting of November 25, 2013, and the Citizen’s Advisory committee meeting also of November 25, 2013.
Superintendent Girard informed the board that the Technology committee has stopped meeting as a whole, and has instead divided into sub-groups. Girard noted that she has heard from several surrounding districts that there will be many changes to the IEP process (Individualized Education Plan), which will need to be implemented next year. Staff members completed AED and CPR training last week.
“The budget seems to be fine,” Girard added. “The transportation fund has fallen behind a little, but we didn’t get one payment [from the state.] The school calendar survey results were comparable to last year. Some exciting news is that we have had one of our Sophomore’s chosen as the winner of the Harvest Hammer’s t-shirt contest. That’s pretty neat.”
Principal Scott Vance’s report stated that several teachers, Darryl Hogue, and Vance himself had recently attended a CCSS/PARCC workshop at Northern Illinois University. Several concepts and ideas which will benefit Morrison students were learned. Semester exams at the High School will be given on December 19 and 20. Plans are being finalized for an ACT prep seminar with Erie High School. The tentative date is set for April 11, 2014.
At the Junior High level, Principal Hogue reported that Jan Scott attended a one day workshop with area new teacher induction coordinators. The workshop focused on helping new teachers and mentors support each other. The Junior High wrestling season began on December 9, with 18 wrestlers.
Sara Tenboer, Heather Stoudt, and Rebecca Covell hosted a Thanksgiving feast through a Bi-County mini-grant. The meal was prepared and cooked by Junior High and Bi-County students, and was enjoyed by parents, grandparents, and community members.
Joe Robbins informed board members that a recommendation has been made for the Northside office manager. The long-term substitute for second grade will be made shortly, and the search for a new Northside nurse in underway.
Red Ribbon poster winners were treated to a pizza party for their fine efforts, and were also given prizes. A refund check was received for recycled printer cartridges.
“We received $170.00 for the activity account, and then another $50.00 for collecting the 3rd most cartridges for the month of October,” Robbins said.
Donated hand sanitizing station from CGH arrived and will be installed over winter break. The Rotary Club donated dictionaries to all 3rd grade students, with Drew Hoffman leading the presentation.
Discussion items included the Financial Report as of November 30, 2013. Girard reported, “Because we are budgeting closer this year, the report shows that percentages are up. For this time of the year, we are where we should be. December is a month of three pays.”
Also discussed were the Treasurer’s report as of November 30, 2013; Financial comparisons FY11, FY12, FY13; Cash flow projection; Bills as of December 16, 2013; and Enrollment Update.
Discussing the Junior High swimming cooperative, Fulton has expressed interest in having some of their swimmers join the Morrison team. Girard stated that caution will need to be taken about the absorption of additional transportation costs. More discussion will take place, following Fulton’s board meeting.
The Board’s self-evaluation meeting was rescheduled for March or April.
The 2014-2015 School calendar survey is similar to last year. Adoption to take place at January meeting.
Board members adjourned the meeting at 8:15 p.m., with the next regular meeting scheduled for January 27, 2014.