By Krystal Fowler - Lifestyle editor
CENTERVILLE — During their regular December meeting the Centerville School Board discussed or moved forward on several construction projects within the district, including a new wrestling/multipurpose room at Lakeview, as well as possibly a concession stand and a new room for the music department there. Other projects included new door locks throughout the district for safety reasons and new boilers at Centerville High School and Howar Junior High.
The Centerville School Board met Monday, Dec. 9 at 6:30 p.m. in the Administration building. Board members Tom Lange, Nick Hindley and Michelle Moore were absent at the start of the meeting. Lange arrived at approximately 7:40 p.m.
Three members of FFA spoke to the board about the trip the group took to their national convention in Kentucky from Oct. 29 to Nov 2. The group consisted of 17 students, three chaperones and one child. During the trip the group took a tour of Churchill Downs and also watched a race at the track among other site seeing. During the convention the group also saw CHS graduate Shaniel Smith receive her American Degree.
Kevin Cochran then proposed to the board that the school district form a junior high baseball and softball league. According to Cochran, there currently isn’t a viable option for kids in seventh and eighth grade to keep playing in Centerville until they reach the high school level. Centerville High School baseball coach Bill Huisman and Russ Ocker also spoke in favor of the idea. The board had some questions about cost, fields, scheduling and the number of players expected if they began having teams. The board said they would continue to consider the idea as they got more information.
The board then approved the agenda, approved the previous meting minutes and discussed a date to have their joint meeting with Moulton-Udell’s board before discussing the Iowa Association of School Boards annual convention. Bill Matkovich spoke about the delegate convention which he attended. He said some hot topics had been school calendar concerns as well as Common Core and Iowa Core. Board members then discussed some of the sessions they had attended which covered topics such as school finance and school security.
The board then approved several resignations, transfers and contracts. Resignations included Tyler Baze as eighth grade volleyball coach and Barbara Lubenow as special education aide specific at Central. Transfers included Mahala Martin as server assistant at Garfield replacing Julie Ocker, Anthony Jahr as assistant girls track coach replacing Lauren Jones, Jessica Williamson as special education aide specific at Central replacing Barbara Lubenow, Heather Benjamin as special education aide specific at Lakeview Elementary in a new position and Laura DePrizio in an involuntary transfer from special education teacher at Centerville High School to Lakeview Elementary. The board also approved two volunteer contracts with Cindee White and Rhonda Hedgecock and recalled Kimberly Mitchell for the second semester to replace Debbie Robinson in a half-time position. Board member Marty Braster voted no on the DePrizio transfer.
The board approved an application to SBRC for additional allowable growth for at-risk for returning dropouts and dropout prevention programs before beginning discussion on estimates of the budget condition and financial focus. Board member Lange arrived during this discussion. This was just a preliminary discussion and look at the projected numbers moving forward toward budget discussions in the next few months.
A contract with StruXture Architect Firm from West Des Moines was approved by the board. The board has inquired about estimates for adding a new multipurpose/wrestling room at Lakeview as well as possibly a concession stand and room for the music department there. Struxture is the firm the board contracted with during the Howar Junior High gym project as well.
The board then approved a bid for door lock replacements in the school district. The project is part of the district’s ongoing security improvements and came out of meetings with EMS professionals about what the school can do to improve safety. Classroom door locks will be updated at all schools except the high school during this project. The board accepted the low bid of $31,250 from Doors, Inc. out of Des Moines. According to Superintendent Tony Ryan, the next update in the ongoing process will most likely be the phone system.
The board then reviewed Policy Series 100 and 900. During the discussion board member Lange asked about usage of facilities and possibly putting activities director Greg Fisher in charge of assigning use of the gyms and also maybe compensating staff members for supervising. The board decided to continue discussing the concerns before approving the first reading of the updated policies. Sports officials contracts were then approved.
During reports the board got an update on the planned replacement of boilers at Centerville High School and Howar Junior High. According to Transportation/Buildings and Grounds Director Mike Zintz, a walk through has been completed and the projects are currently on a 12 month time table with a summer installation planned. Superintendent Ryan also brought up to the board that the school district was having some ongoing difficulties with their health insurance provider and that the board might be hearing more about that in the future. Financial reports were then approved and the meeting was adjourned.