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Paynesville Press - August 21, 2002

District #741 School Board

The Paynesville Area School Board took the following actions at their meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 13.

*The board reviewed the transportation arrangement for students living within the triangular area formed by Highways 23, 55, and 124. Elementary school students in that area will have to walk to school this year, as there will be no bus pick-up, except at Pumpkin Patch, a daycare on Highway 124 without a sidewalk.

For middle and high school students living in that triangular area, there will be two pick-up spots for transportation to the middle/high school: at the elementary school and at St. Louis Catholic Church.

*The board approved not using the eight-way light system and stop sign on school buses at six stops for 2002-03. The stops are recommended to the school district, based on safety concerns that make not using the lights safer. The flashing bus lights, which halt traffic, will not be used at the following residences: Jerry Humbert on Highway 55, Delwin Liebrenz on Highway 55, John Frederick on Minnie Street, Grace United Methodist Church on River Street, Ron Mergen on Mill Street, and Ted Kilanowski on Highway 55.

*The board approved a one-year contract for Lew Storkamp, as building and grounds supervisor, during the 2002-03 school year. The vote was 4-3, with Maurice Dosdall, Pat Flanders, Gretchen O'Fallon, and Allen Schmidt voting in favor of the new contract, which includes a 4.9 percent salary increase. Mark Dingmann, Deb Glenz, and Tami Stanger voted against the contract, arguing that other employees settled for raises of just more than two percent. Supporters of the contract noted that Storkamp intends to retire after this year, which they felt justified the higher salary amount.

*The board directed superintendent Howard Caldwell to investigate the school district's legal options for the effect of the zoning for a new airport on the southern portion of the school's property at its middle/high school campus.

*The board received a financial report for the fitness center, showing a $5,407.88 profit in 2001-02, its first year of operation. The fitness center had 516 memberships, 12,452 visits, and 2,217 hours of operation, according to Community Education director Matt Dickhausen. It had $26,278.90 in revenue and $20,971.07 in expenses, including $16,842.21 for staffing, $1,153.20 for repair and maintenance, and $2,975.66 for equipment.

*The board approved its goals for 2002-03: to continue to pursue a balanced budget and be fiscally responsible and to examine various organizational structures so that all students will be challenged to reach their academic potential. Possible projects, as identified by the board at a special meeting on Monday, Aug. 5, were: to increase advanced course offerings; to develop an advisor/advisee program for grades 7 through 12; to differentiate instruction; to have the board, administration, and staff encourage open communication and public involvement; and to review and update the employee improvement processes.

*The board received information regarding a recent indoor air quality evaluation of the school district's facilities. From the evaluation, four of the 12 air ventilation units in the high school building needed to be cleaned. This was done, using the lowest quote, around $45,000. Evaluations of indoor air quality now will occur on an annual basis.

*The board approved dairy and bakery bids for the 2002-03 school year, accepting the lowest bid. Food Service of America had the lowest dairy bids again: 17 for a pint of whole milk, 15 for two percent, 13.25 for skim, and 14.75 for chocolate. Pan-O-Gold offered the lowest bread bids: 60 for a loaf of white bread, 63 for a loaf of white sandwich bread, and 66 for a loaf of wheat bread.

*The board approved moving its meeting dates in December from the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month to the first and third Tuesdays. The board plans to meet on Tuesday, Dec. 3, at 8 p.m. and on Tuesday, Dec. 17, at 2 p.m. in order to meet with their student advisory council in the media center at the middle school.

*The board scheduled a public hearing on its 2002 property tax levy for Tuesday, Dec. 3, at 7 p.m. at the media center at the elementary school.

*The board approved the following 2002-03 school year schedule athletic assignments: head football, Kyle Nehowig; assistant football, Ron Fuchs and Tim Woehler; ninth grade football, Jerry Hunt; head volleyball, Sheila Mayer; assistant volleyball, Dawn Knoll; ninth grade volleyball, Krysta Gunderson; head cross country, Darrel Carstens; assistant cross country, Rick Houske; and football cheerleading, Cindy Fuchs.

*The board approved an employment assignment for Joan Blonigen, as a part-time special education instructional assistant (nine hours per week) during the 2002-03 school year.

*The board approved adjustments to the following food service positions for the 2002-03 school year: high school cook (from 40 hours to 32 hours per week) and high school cook/dishwasher position (from 15 to 23 hours per week).

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