School Board Briefs
Sports equity worries teacher, parent
A Tonganoxie teacher and parent told Tonganoxie school board members Monday night that he's concerned about equity in sports.
John Korb said the board should equally fund girls and boys sports programs.
"The baseball field is getting sodded and irrigated," Korb said. "I have two daughters, and the softball field doesn't even have a scoreboard. It sounds like we're always short of money and it seems like we're getting a lot of things for the boys programs and nothing for the girls, it seems like there's a real inequity and I'd like to know what's going on."
Superintendent Richard Erickson said he had approved the work on the boys field.
"It was one of those deals that was just too good to be true," Erickson said. "With the rec commission sharing the expense, it was $1,200 for the school and $1,200 for the rec commission."
Erickson thanked Korb for bringing his concerns to the board's attention.
"I'm glad to hear that," Erickson said. "I hadn't heard about the inequity situation."
Board member Ron Moore said later that coaches of girls teams should be more vocal in making their needs known to the board.
Heating, fuel costs increased for schools
The school district's December and January heating costs were twice that of the previous year.
To date, the school has paid $55,820 for heating costs during this school year. A year ago at this time, the district's heating costs had been $27,022.
Superintendent Richard Erickson noted that fuel costs for transportation reflected a rise in prices.
This year, to date, the school has paid $19,942 for fuel. A year ago at this time, fuel prices had totaled $14,284, Erickson said.
Despite the heating and fuel increases, Erickson said he was still optimistic that the district would be able to transfer funds to the general fund.
"But with the heating situation, we still have to pay for the February and March heating bills," Erickson said. "So this isn't over yet."
Food service prices to increase by 5 cents
The school board approved a five-cent increase in food service prices for the 2001-2002 school year, as recommended by Erickson.
"The nickel increase would raise about 8,300 new dollars for the food service if the (enrollment) numbers remain the same," Erickson said. "That would help us in buying some new equipment."
Erickson also said he would also like to increase the meal price by another five cents in the 2002-2003 school year.
The board also voted to increase the cost of a family athletic pass from $45 to $50. An athletic pass admits a student and the immediate family to district athletic events.
The board approved a $6,906 membership in the Kansas Association of School Boards, and a $900 fee to participate in the KASB legal assistance program.
High school internship program successful
The high school's internship program has been a success, said Mike Webb, high school counselor.
This year, seven students are enrolled in an internship program that lets them work for school credit in area businesses.
Webb predicted that the number of student interns would increase to between 15 and 20 next year.
Two high school students are participating in vocational school programs, Webb said.
Webb said he thought the internship program would grow.
"I expect that number to increase to 10 next year," he said.
Also, Webb said, students from K-12 are participating in curriculum that encourage them to think about future careers.
"I really feel like our students now have direction to go with their careers in the future," Webb said.
Superintendent praises student achievements
In his "Good News Report," Superintendent Richard Erickson praised senior Darren Welch for receiving a $120,000 scholarship to the Illinois Institute of Technology.
Other student achievements Erickson noted include:
A THS academic awards banquet on March 27 that honored 85 students.
FCCLA teams, under the instruction of Pam Lamb, competed and placed at state competition.
Tonganoxie Elementary School students last week were honored for their success in the PTA-sponsored art and literature competition.
Music students recently received top ratings at the regional competition.
Board approves personnel matters
Following an executive session, school board members approved several personnel matters. The board approved:
Shannon Nickell's request to transfer from the high school to the junior high school.
Hiring of Jared Walters as a "dollar" coach.
Hiring of Clint Newton as an additional assistant baseball coach.
Merilee Cooper's request for a sabbatical next spring.