The Aurelia School DIstrict had its official registration for the 2007-2008 school year on August 6, and Superintendent Tom Vint said the in-building enrollment total of 290 students (K-12) is exactly the same number as last year's anticipated total. Vint reported these figures at Monday evening's monthly meeting of the Aurelia School Board.
The elementary (TK-4) enrollment is 107, an increase of two from last year's figure; the Middle School (5-8) has 79 students enrolled, an increase of 13 students from last year; and the High School (9-12) has 104 students, a decrease of 15 from last year. There will also be four students, from two families, who will receive home schooling this year.
Vint also provided the Board with an update on the progress of summer maintenance projects. A new boiler is being installed, and will be completed by Sept. 1. The air conditioning has been installed in the server room and High School offices, and has been very appreciated by High School Principal Dave Hickman and Elementary Principal Ann Sandine, who have been able to close their office doors when meeting with students and parents and be comfortable. The new air conditioners are also very quiet. The gym floor has been sanded, painted, and refinished, and Vint was very impressed with this work. New stage curtains are also being installed in the gym at this time. Carpet has been installed in the Second Floor Conference Room, as well as in the entrance area to the Wrestling room and shop. New landscaping has been done at the west entrance of the 1920 building, and trees will be trimmed before the start of school on August 21.
Board member Jim Hultgren reported on the July meeting of the Wellness Center Committee. The committee has recommended to the Board that the facility use an automatic door lock, where the doors will automatically open and close at a certain time each day. They also recommended a yearly membership fee of $95 for families and $50 for individuals. A list of members will be posted at the Center, and if non-members are seen using the facility and equipment, members will report this to Myron Radke, who has agreed to be in charge of the Wellness Center. The committee also discussed the possibility of applying for a Iowa Foundation Grant to help with the purchase of extra equipment - probably those pieces which are most popular with members. The Wellness Committee had a meeting on Tuesday and on the agenda were setting rules for the Center's use, sanitary procedures, and setting up dates for Open House(s) and classes on using the equipment.
The Wellness Center is about ready to open, The town said they would remove a light pole on Tuesday, and this will allow the pouring of the cement for parking. Some type of security lighting will be attached to the building.The architect has also agreed to draft a plan which will fix a problem with the level of the entrances and the blacktop parking. The Board approved a waiver and release form, which had been reviewed by the school attorney and insurance agent, for Wellness Center members to sign, releasing the School District from all claims, demands or causes of action.
In other business, the Board was informed that Art instructor Aaron Ware had requested to be released from his contract to pursue employment in another District. The Board denied his request because they have not been able to find a suitable replacement at this late date. In his letter of resignation, Ware said he understood the situation, and was ready to resume his duties at Aurelia if the Board denied his request.
The Board discussed the Anti-Bullying and Harassment Policy, which the legislature has mandated to be in place at all schools by September 1, and approved this policy. Superintendent Vint also discussed SF277, a "Professional Development and Teacher Quality" piece of legislation which was passed. Under this legislation, the Board will be required to create a teacher quality committee. Vint will be receiving more information on this soon, and the Board will discuss the issue in more detail after reviewing the information.
In other business, Board member Susan Corderman was appointed to attend the District Director Convention, serving as a representative of District 2 on the AEA Board. Dan Winterhof was re-appointed as the Board's Legislative Action Network Representative. The Board also approved the Title I application. The allocation from the federal government will be $28,747 for the 2007-2008 school year, an increase of $909 from last school year.
The Board reluctantly declined a proposal from a local business to donate money to the school, as part of a effort to increase crowd involvement at football games, saying the plan as outlined would be a violation of Board Policy 90-4.2, which states that "the use of...the school district...buildings and sites for advertising and promoting products and/or services of entities and organizations operating for a profit is disallowed." They like the idea of increasing crowd enthusiasm and participation, though, and hope that perhaps something else could be done along these lines, perhaps through the Booster Club.
Vint said the 2007-08 Property and Liablity insurance cost will be $42,459, a 6.9 percent increase from last year. Included in that figure is $275 for "Builder's Risk" insurance to cover the construction of the Wellness Center.
One candidate, Paul Pingel, has filed papers for the September 11 School Board election. Keith Glienke will be leaving the Board after the September meeting, and Superintendent Vint thanked Glienke for his dedicated service to the Board.
Following three teacher workshop days, classes will begin on Tuesday Aug. 21. There will be a "Meet the Teacher Night" from 5:30-7:30 p.m. that evening, initiated through the school's Parent Communication Grant. Parents are encouraged to attend this event. All students who will be attending WITCC classes will have an orientation at WITCC that evening, too.
The Board tabled the first reading of Board Policy series 600 until the next meeting. The next meeting will be held on Monday Sept. 17, with a meeting of the retiring Board followed by the regular monthly meeting of the new, post-election Board.