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Aurelia Board approves trip

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

The Aurelia School Board approved a trip by the High School music students to Arlington, Texas, April 25-29, 2007. The action was taken at the regular monthly school board meeting Monday night.

The Music Department takes a trip every four years. They will perform in a festival-type setting in Texas next spring. Funding for the trip will need to be arranged.

The Board also approved sharing junior high football with the Alta school district this fall. Aurelia will have only 12 boys in the seventh and eighth grades this year, and it was felt that there would not be enough players to field a team without sharing.

Superintendent Tom Vint and High School Principal Dave Hickman presented the proposed changes to the Middle School and High School student handbooks for this school year. The only change in the Middle School code involves the dress code, where students will not be permitted to wear "flip-flops" or sandals between the dates of November 1 and March 1. Proposed changes to the High School handbook involved the criteria for Open Campus privileges for Seniors, where Seniors must have at least a 2.0 GPA for the previous nine weeks (second quarter) and maintain that 2.0 GPA each quarter during their Senior year to receive Open Campus privileges.

Also, the student dress code has been changed to include recommendations made by the School Improvement Advisory Committee. The added statements are: "Students must recognize that brief and revealing clothing is not appropriate apparel in school," and "Every student must be clothed from shoulder to mid-thigh."

Several other business items are things which are approved annually at the July Board meeting, including the approval of appointments, approval of the Free and Reduced Lunch program (a Federal program), and the approval of Student fees. The Student breakfast fee and the Adult lunch fee were each raised a nickel, and other fees will remain the same as last school year.

The pay rate for substitute teachers will be raised by $5/day, to enable Aurelia to keep up with increased competition in hiring substitutes. The mileage rate of $0.29/mile will stay at that rate, and the school policy encouraging the use of school vehicles rather than private vehicles will also remain.

Bids for the bread and milk contracts were reviewed, and the Board approved the awarding of the dairy contract to Anderson-Erickson, whose bid was much lower than the other bidder. The bread contract was awarded to Wonder Bakery, the only bidder.

House File 2792 requires school districts to have a qualified K-12 teacher librarian by July 1, 2006, or file a one-year waiver request by August 1. The Board approved filing the waiver, then looking into sharing a teacher librarian with another district through a 28E Agreement. Vint thought this solutiion would make much more economic sense for the district.

Vint has notified teacher Tim Ireland that the District has not been able to find a "suitable replacement" for his position after advertising and interviewing two candidates. He will not be released from his contract for this reason. Ireland said he was fine with that, and looking forward to returning to Aurelia this fall.

The Aurelia Foundation has approved a donation of $5000 to the school, to be used for equipment purchases at all grade levels.The approval was for technology purchases as well as the Accelerated Reading Program. The Foundatiion also discussed some possible fund-raising activities, such as having an "Aurelia Night" at the BV Raceway or a golf tournament next summer.

Vint reported on summer projects. The new playground equipment arrived today, and the new school bus should be delivered in mid-July. Two of the older, high mileage buses will be used as trade-ins.

The new padding for the stage area should be installed by mid-July, and roofing work on the shop area will be done about that same time.

The second grade classroom, which is moving to the second floor, has had new carpet installed, and new linoleum has been installed in the Home Economics room.

Desks in the High School science and foreign language rooms have been replaced and the new bleachers have been installed at the softball field.

Vint is concerned that the water line replacement and installation of drainage tile have not yet been accomplished, but is hopeful that this will occur soon, as the start of school is only a month away.

Vint reported that all of the District's "Adequate Yearly Progress" goals have been met, which is especially important because this is the determining factor in the state's identifying "schools in need of assistance."

The Board discussed the Aurelia District's priorities for the IASB Legislative platform, and agreed that "non-funded mandates," "K-12 school funding issues," "budget guarantee," and "sharing incentives for school districts" were the District's highest priorities.

The meeting adjourned following a discussion about the Board's trip to the Woodbury Central weight room. They were impressed with much of what they saw and heard, and they will continue looking into options for a Wellness Center at the Aurelia school.

The next regular meeting of the Board will be on Aug. 14, although a special meeting may be called when the Dept. of Education's feasibility study report arrives, so that they can review the report.

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