November 7, 2002
School Board Still Considering Proposed Parking Lot Project
The Scotland County R-I School Board had its trick-or-treat time cut into as the October meeting of the schools' governing board fell on Halloween night.
Board members were not treated to good news as far as a proposed parking lot project for the south lots at the high school and north school.
Superintendent LeRoy Huff informed the board that the company which the school had been corresponding with regarding possible options for the troublesome lots will not be traveling to Memphis this fall as it had previously indicated.
Huff reported he had contacted two alternate firms to discuss some makeshift options such as chemical dust control. He indicated both firms had expressed interest in providing the service.
"However, the prices they quoted seemed extremely high," Huff said.
After hearing the update, board members took the issue under advisement and agreed to review the proposals after the first of the year when the district will have a clearer view on its financial situation.
SCR-I Transportation Director Dennis Robertson was present at the meeting seeking board approval to advertise for sale one of the district's used buses.
The board voted 7-0 to allow Robertson to attempt to sell the bus via sealed bids.
The district will accept sealed bids on a 1982 Chevy chassis, 65-passenger Carpenter body style bus. The vehicle has a 366 CID gas engine and has a total of 93,333 miles. The bids will be accepted until Wednesday, November 20.
The board reviewed a preliminary report regarding tuck pointing work that needs to be done at the elementary school. The group reviewed the recommended improvements list and agreed to consider options at a later date in order to get the necessary repairs made.
Five members of the SCR-I board along with Superintendent Huff attended the Missouri School Board Association Conference in October. Board member George Koontz served as the group's delegate to the Assembly of Delegates and reported on action taken during the two-day meeting.
The board received a total of eight separate procedural evaluations in the areas of Extra-Curricular Activities, District At-Risk, Elementary Instructional Effectiveness, Secondary Instructional Effectiveness, Secondary Instructional Climate, Elementary Instructional Climate, Secondary Vocational Programs and District Finance.
Principal Dave Shalley gave the Secondary Instructional Climate report. He cited six strengths in this area for the district, including the addition of the new security camera system at the school, which he felt is helping promote more positive student behavior. At the same time he gave credit for the overall positive instructional climate to the quality of staff at the facility.
Principal Rob Moore echoed Shalley's sentiments in regards to the elementary school staff. He offered 10 strengths for his buildings instructional climate, along with seven concerns he hopes to address.
Superintendent Huff gave the School Finance report, which included the district's audit report from Larson, Allen, Weishair & Co., LLP.
Phillip McCarthy, the lead auditor stated, "We received the complete cooperation from all staff during the 2002 audit. It appears that the overall accounting procedures laid down by the district are being adhered to by the personnel with the business office."
The audit concluded that the district balances are $1,417,573 as of June 30, 2002.
"The ending balances for 2001-2002 puts the district in excess of $1 million, which is the district's goal for reserves," Huff said. "However finances are the tightest I have seen in the past 20 years and we must manage carefully our resources or we will find ourselves deficit spending this year, more than projected. The district will be very fortunate if we can even come close to balancing the budget for the fifth consecutive year."
Huff went on to report that the financial forecast at the state level continues to be very negative as state revenues for the first quarter are well below what the state office of management and budget projected.
"It's my recommendation that in January or no later than February, the board hold a work session to prioritize the budget restraints we need to make for the next fiscal year," Huff said. "This will allow the administration the opportunity to implement some of the restraints in time for next year's budget."
The board voted 7-0 to accept all procedural evaluations as presented.
The board heard requests for altered schedules for the second semester for high school students. Three students were granted early release for the second semester while three additional students were approved for reduced schedules in the second semester after the board determined all candidates had met graduation requirements or would do so via the reduced schedule.
After hearing from the high school counselor and principal the board voted 7-0 to approve all six requests.
The board met in executive session following the completion of the open meeting. Principals Shalley and Moore gave the board the first quarter evaluation of the district's certified staff. No action was taken on these reports as they were for information purposes only.