The board meeting held Jan. 28 was the first time the new law has gone in effect requiring boards to reorganize in January. This new law also has moved back the trustee election until November of odd years. This means that the current board member seats that would have come up for election in March is now moved to November general election.
We have three zones (seats) up for election this November. These zones are Zone 1 - Sarah McGrath, Zone 2 - Cindy O’Brien, and Zone 3 - Danielle Hardy.
The reorganization yielded Dr. Charity Robinson as Chair, Cindy O’Brien as Vice-Chair, and Heather Knight as Clerk/Treasurer. The Board then reviewed and signed the Code of Ethics. Signatories were established as Dr. Charity Robinson, Cindy O’Brien, and Heather Knight.
Regular Board meeting dates and locations along with agenda posting locations were established for 2019.
Reports were reviewed by the board and commented on.
A discussion was held on food service charges. Currently there are around $5000 in outstanding student charges. The correlation between individual charges and the absence of a free and reduced application is large. We are trying to get the message out that the applications are worth the effort.
In fact, state and federal monies are determined by using this data and if the applications are not filled out then the numbers are not accurate and can cost the district money. It was mentioned that the Free and Reduced applications also are utilized to determine monies for our public libraries. We urge everyone to fill one out as soon as they can. Thank you for your assistance.
We continue to move forward in our district with policy reviews, district wide accreditation and systemic changes that will lead to more consistency throughout the district. We are very grateful to have such supportive communities and patrons. Thank you for helping make JSD171 a great place for kids.
Into another week at JSD171 and Mother Nature is still indecisive about the season. The storm that passed through last night was wide spread causing travel difficulties across the district. The roads were not the only concerns as Timberline had snow removal equipment that was broken down as well as electrical flickering.
Cavendish had no power. As a result, both schools were closed for Monday. The Orofino schools and Peck were on a two hour delay. Thank you to everyone for your understanding and patience. We try to keep our students and staff as safe as possible.
The big discussion throughout the district is on the proposed funding formula. I am still working closely with Senator Crabtree to make sure JSD171 gets the funding it needs to educate students. I have a conference call with the committee Tuesday to verify numbers and examine adjustments that need to happen to help out our district.
I have also spoken to Rotary and plan to speak at Chamber this week on the topic. If your organization would like to visit about the formula or have questions please let me know. I would be glad to be a part of the conversation.
When asked what we can do to help as the public? For now, I would recommend calling your legislature and if you are to make a recommendation I would suggest that the funding formula be taken up by the Governor’s Education Task Force. This would be a very well rounded group that would include education professionals in the discussion.
We are getting ready to begin interest based bargaining with employee representation. With all of the funding uncertainty it will be difficult to budget and predict increases at this point. Hopefully we will have more solid numbers from the state soon.
The Policy Committee is set to meet to finish another round of policy review. ISBA is doing a great job of communicating and helping us out.
The Calendar Committee for the 2019/2020 year is being formed and will be meeting soon to determine the school calendar for next year.
As always, loads happening at JSD171. There tends to be a concern and worry about the uncertainty of legislative actions, but take a look in any classroom in any building and you can see the great things happening at JSD171.
We have great community support, great staff, and great students and will continue to move forward in a positive and successful manner as any strong team would.
Thanks again for your ongoing support of JSD171.