Friday Board Bulletin 10/13/17

Board Members:

It has been a very productive week as we have put finishing touches on certified enrollment and fall BEDS. The certified enrollment report and projection model is included in the board packet for Monday, but this news is all good. The number of open enrollment ‘out’ is down, the number of open enrollment ‘in’ is up, and our certified count is up by 12. Total number served in district is up by 29. If there is any bad news, it’s that our enrollment has grown by an additional 8 since count day and we won’t be able to count any of those students!

Monday evening I attended the city council meeting where the council took action on the preliminary plat layout for the Twin Oaks residential development. I spoke on behalf of the district in support of this project. You can read my comments here. This development will include 67 single family homes, 20 Western home villas and the possibility of commercial development. Special thanks to President Finn for attending the meeting with me.

Chad and I spent extended time on the line item budget this week and have adjusted our overall expenditures downward, while at the same time adjusting our personnel costs upward. The net effect is a lower than expected grand total for expenditures, but the devil is in the details. For the most part, this is reflected in our ‘tuition out’ for special education services since we are serving more students in the district than we did last year. As you know, this is all academic at this point and we’ll have to monitor these line items and adjust the budget as we gain experience in the fiscal year.

This was also evaluation week for administrators. My discussion with the administrators focused on challenges and opportunities. We spent quite a bit of our time together talking about the variety of challenges that each are facing right now, but I ended the conversation by asking each to share 3 positive items in their buildings right now. These evaluation meetings are a great way for me to properly contextualize the work our building leaders are engaged in. It is also inspiring to see how they each are able to breathe life into the vision they have for their building!

I do believe the big news of the week was our football team’s defeat of Gladbrook-Reinbeck last Saturday. Someone tweeted out this was the first time since 1995 we had won this game! All our teams are beginning to peak at just the right time. The volleyball team will open up regional action next Tuesday when we host Applington-Parkersburg and our boys and girls cross country teams will participate in the state qualifying meet next Thursday in Ottumwa. Our final home football game is tonight at 7:00 p.m. and we will have one final game next Friday evening at Bell Plaine.

While our agenda for Monday evening appears to be light (only 3 action items), I would like to spend extended time in buildings and grounds. Specifically we need to frame the scope of phase 2 (elementary renovation) within the context of the damage that was done to the HVAC control system during the brown out (I should have answers on what insurance coverage we can expect by the time we meet), and second; the heating and mechanical work that needs to be done that was uncovered when the new control system was brought online. Both of these could have an impact on phase 2. I will need your advice and direction on how best to proceed. Don’t be surprised if a late action item is added to our agenda (per BP 210.8). Nonetheless, it would be my desire to adjourn no later than 8:00 p.m. so I can attend the high school music concert. 

The photo I am sharing this week was taken during a health class yesterday afternoon. The class was discussing the impact advertising has on spending patterns in society, while at the same time downplaying or ignoring the negative impact some of these products may have on a person’s health.
Have a great weekend! I look forward to seeing you on Monday night!
Dr. Anthony D. Voss, Superintendent