School board prepares for construction bid
2014-15 calendar presented
GRAFTON – The Grafton School Board met on Tuesday morning for their regular monthly meeting. The Nov. 14 regular meeting and Nov 20 special meeting minutes were approved without discussion as was the consideration of bills, payroll and financial reports.
Superintendent Jack Maus presented the 2014-15 school calendar draft to the board for review. The draft was one of three selected after teacher review and recommendations. According to Maus the start dates across the state vary from as early as Aug. 19 to as late as Sept. 2. To keep the graduation date within the month of May the start date of Aug. 27 was selected to fit the required 175 days of classroom instruction which puts graduation on May 31, 2015, the weekend after Memorial Day.
The last day of school would be May 28 with storm days being March 6, 9, April 6 and May 29 if needed.
Christmas break would be from Dec 24-Jan 4. Spring break would be March 6-9 and Easter break would be April 3-6. Discussion was held regarding time off for state basketball and hockey tournaments and Maus mentioned that it was more favorable to have permanently established breaks landing on a Friday and Monday than to have several different Fridays off. In the event of a team going to a state tournament it is possible to use a snow day if needed.
Discussion was held regarding the future state referendum that could possibly delay the start of school until after Labor Day. The question was raised if the length of school days could be increased to meet the required hours, but according to Maus, the state of North Dakota requires 175 days that are not broken up into classroom hours, as is the state of Minnesota. Maus mentioned that it may not be in the best interest of local schools to allow the state to determine the start dates as that would take control away from local districts and could in the future put graduation into the first week of June.
The board discussed issues pertaining to the Upper Valley Special Education board meeting that was held October 14. At the October 14 meeting, Maus expressed desire to have the payments flow directly to the districts, and in turn raise the assessments to accommodate that change, retaining the current cash flow to the special education district. Maus made the motion and Kirk Ham seconded to approve the change beginning the 2014-15 school year.
Mark Wagner gave a report with North Valley Career and Technology Center (NVCTC) and mentioned Allison Noll is the new ag technology instructor and Cheryl Owsoski is the new adult education coordinator.
Wagner expanded on new additions to programs including a North Dakota pilot program to teach welding over an ITV system.
Wagner also noted NVCTC is now a Pearson VUE authorized testing center for students to taking the GED test.
In other business the board
•Was informed by Superintendent Maus that Leanne Campbell has been approved for up to 16 hours per week to perform nurse duties pertaining to training and oversight of staff.
• Was informed by Maus that monies from the safety and security state grant, that must be used by June of 2016, will be used to repair the gymnasium public address system that recently stopped working. The repairs should be completed by Thursday for the boys and girls basketball game against North Border.
• Reviewed enrollment and was informed of enrollment changes. High school enrollment dropped from 238 students in November to 230 students in December. Central Middle School enrollment dropped from 251 to 239 and Century Elementary enrollment dropped from 377 to 372.
• Was informed by activities director Randy Rice that participation numbers for winter sports are as follows: high school boys basketball, 22, junior high boys basketball, 24, high school girls basketball, 17, junior high girls basketball, 23, hockey, 35 and wrestling 16.