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Sturgeon R-V closes in on Ag building

Posted on Thursday, December 30, 2021 at 3:10 am

The Sturgeon R-V School District is a few steps closer to using their new Agriculture/weight-lifting building.

They still have issues with a FEMA-required storm door that is necessary for the portion of the building that will be used as a storm shelter, but otherwise, it is very close to completion, said Melia Franklin, Sturgeon R-V superintendent of schools. According to the meeting’s draft minutes: “The outside of the building is finished. The solar panels are 100% complete. The interior is considered more punch list than incomplete with the exception of the installation of the FEMA doors to be completed by the end of this week.”

In other business, the board discussed a change in its virtual classroom.

They unanimously voted to pursue a partnership with the Pearson Connections Academy for their online classes. “It is fiscally frugal,” Franklin said when asked the advantages of the move.

According to the draft minutes: “Over the course of a five-year agreement, the district will be guaranteed a minimum of $50,000 per year.  Yearly totals will depend on enrollment numbers. The district will also receive on-line courses for Sturgeon students at a reduced cost. Currently, our attorney is reviewing the contract agreement. The board believes this partnership will benefit our students and provide the district a funding source.” She said currently they have between 10 to 15 students enrolled in online classes.

In other business, the board unanimously voted to offer Lisa Gramke a probationary teaching contract for the second semester of the 21-22 school year. She will work as Sturgeon’s High School’s counselor. “I am very pleased we are able to offer this support for our students,” Franklin said.

They also approved a $1,521.50 expenditure to purchase additional equipment for the weight room.

In another monetary issue, they learned Kelly Services is going to increase certified substitute teacher pay from $75 a day, to $90. Franklin said the pay for long-term substitutes will remain at $100 per day.

Sports was also on the table.

R-V Athletic Director Michael Smith shared his concerns with the board regarding the district’s supply budget. The price of uniforms and equipment is rising, making it more challenging for the district to afford those items. According to minutes Franklin said she would address the issue in the upcoming budget.

Budget consideration also figured in a related item. The board voted 6-1 to approve Smith’s recommendation to begin a middle school softball program next season. Board President Misty Doss voted against the proposal. Franklin said Doss’ vote against the program was motivated by budget concerns.

Franklin also discussed the upcoming school board election. The terms of Jill Halliburton, Kevin Smith and Ben Pollock are up. Halliburton and Smith’s terms are for three years, Pollock’s for one. Franklin said nobody has yet declared for any of the seats, “but we have had several calls indicating interest.

The last available days to register a candidacy at the board office are December 20, 21 and 28, she said.