THOMSON – The West Carroll School Board considered the renewal of several lease agreements, among other business, at its May 15th, 2013 meeting at the Thomson Intermediate School.
Board members Mike Highland, Bev Kilpatrick, John Brigham, Dawn Rath, and Mark Klein were in attendance, with Jennifer Rice and Jerry Anderson absent. Also attending were District Superintendent Craig Mathers, Principals Jeannette Ashby, Bob Lamb, Julie Katzenberger, and Pam Delp as well as Technology Director Brad Field and Recording Secretary/Business Office Manager Sandra Aude.
Mathers led off the night with the news that the State of Illinois is currently $229,000.00 behind in its funding to West Carroll, and that the District had received a letter from the IHSA informing them that the West Carroll Music Department was a winner in the Class B Sweepstakes.
Lamb told the Board that Kaylee Vos was a State Track qualifier, and congratulated the April Students of the Month; Tessa Ehlers, Ninth Grade, Rachel Dykstra, 10th Grade, Darby Rumler, 11th Grade, and Kaylee Vos, 12th Grade. Principal Lamb also congratulated the following students at the Highland Community College Art Exhibit: Darby Rumler, Best of Show and Honorable Mention, Kaitlin Rabuck, Best of School, and Valerie Johnson, 2nd Place Aspiring Artists at Freeport Art Museum.
Mrs. Ashby told the Board that $6,800.00 was raised in the annual Bike-a-thon.
Delp informed the Board that the Pre School has received $620,770.00 out of the total $773,091.00 grant funding they are expecting, or 85 percent of total. She also noted that the Special Education department has received a rating of 4 in all categories, which indicates that West Carroll meets requirements set by the State of Illinois.
Leases, Leases, Leases . . .
The Board discussed and ultimately approved a technology lease with Providence Capital Network to secure 400 laptop computers for a total of just under $200,000.00 (not counting added costs such as personnel, wireless connections and infrastructure). Rath questioned what the “downfall” of not going ahead with this agreement would be, and most present agreed that technology such as the 1:1 Initiative was absolutely the wave of the future and that as Mathers put it, they could “do it this year or be forced to do it next year.” The welfare of the students’ education was also cited as a key reason for going ahead with this lease.
The District’s Building leases were also discussed briefly, with the Board ultimately electing to renew their lease with Hillcrest Family Services for $40,000, and to renegotiate their lease with Head Start next year.
The Board agreed to table, for the time being, the renewal of their current bus garage leases.
The Board listened to a brief presentation by Laurie Miller of Buettner, Miller and Parrott, on the District’s health insurance coverage. No action was taken in the wake of this presentation.
The Board reviewed the various bids for the District’s Property and Casualty Insurance coverage, and ultimately decided to go with the bid from Selective Insurance (Lockhart and Law).
Mathers asked for permission to amend the District budget thusly; Since the current Operations and Maintenance Fund is running short, he wanted to put some of the General State aid funding into this fund instead of the Education fund and this was unanimously approved the the Board.
The Board’s final action item was a motion by Klein to approve the submission of a maintenance (up to $100,000.00) grant to replace the Middle School boilers and lock security (total costs, $66,682.00) for the district buildings.
The Board then recessed into executive session to discuss items relating to employees, collective bargaining, the purchase or sale of real property, and student discipline cases.
Executive Session Action
The Board approved the hiring of Joseph Hansen as the new district athletic director/assistant high school principal. Among other personnel moves, the Board approved the hiring of Lindsay Naumann as a middle school math teacher, and Roger Ellerbrook as a high school special education teachers.