The Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn School Board met with an extra busy agenda Monday evening, June 18th. The first order of business dealt with opening up a number of sealed bids on extra school equipment that was no longer needed which range from basketballs to kitchen and office equipment to mowers.
The Cherokee County Road Department had the top bid of $1,000 for a 1995 International school bus. A 1991 Chevy station wagon went to Dave Stodden for $662. Numerous items were sold while a few others had no bid. It is uncertain what will happen to the remaining items.
The board approved the naming the MMC baseball field, "The Ed Smith Field" to honor Smith for the many, many hours of donated time and effort to make it a standout over the last 30 years. He was head baseball coach for as many years until he retired a couple of years ago.
The board had a lengthy discussion on whether to give a full credit to students participating in vocal and band. It was noted of the time students put in to each activity and many felt it was worthwhile to do so. A survey will be taken of music booster organization to get some feed back from the parents before taking action. Many schools give a letter grade. Some let the grade affect the student's GPA while others do not.
The board set fees for milk by rising it from 25 to 30 cents per carton; meals for Kindergarten through 5th grade rose 10 cents; grades 6 through 12 meals rose 25 cents; extra entrees will cost 75 cents. The price of food is up and with fewer students to feed, the lunch program will need to watch expenses and income. Last year they served an average of 392 lunches a day. The board permanently transferred $17,000 from the general fund to the lunch fund.
Activity fees for adults will be $60 which board members felt were still reasonable when it allows one into a good number of activities. It still runs half price to per game admission.
The board accepted four resignations: Leah Jacobs, instrumental instructor; Sheila Remington, math instructor; Kathy Bork, art instructor; and Shane Williams as boys' track coach. Replacements have been found for instrumental and art department and someone has volunteered to fill in for track for a year. The math is still open as is an English position.
At this point, board member Jeff Gross spoke up to say he is bitter how the staff went about negotiations and felt they certainly didn't put their best foot forward. He hoped the coming year wouldn't be the same. Due to their demands and waiting for insurance costs, contracts did not get out in a timely matter. They have a certain amount of time to turn them back in and this year, it is unfortunate the board learned of these vacancies so late. The later it is, the more difficult it is to find a new hire. Gross added the process left him with a bad taste.
Supt. Jan Brandhorst asked the board to pay $2,080 to Vickie Rainboth for taking on the transportation records which has saved the district hiring another person. The board approved.
The board heard an update on the construction progress. He told the board that the main contractor and subcontractors will meet monthly to stay in sync.
The board discuss whether cell phones should be allowed in school. The elementary level doesn't have a problem with it. The high school is another story. The phones will need to be left in their car or locker with them turned off or else they will be taken from them.
The board discussed Eagle Time when the staff wants to help students who have a problem of understanding and are receiving poor grades. These students will report at 3:15 until 3:45 p.m. to receive extra help. Sports will begin at 3:30 p.m.