Archive for Wednesday, February 14, 2007

School board briefs: Money trail detailed for fundraisers

February 14, 2007

When school-sponsored fundraisers are conducted, the money has to go somewhere.
Monday night, Tonganoxie school administrators told board members where the funds are kept, how they are secured and what they're used for.
After their presentations, board president Kay Smith thanked the administrators for their reports.
"I don't want anyone to feel threatened or anything," Smith said. "We just wanted to understand where this money goes and how it's processed."
A detailed report on this topic will be presented in next week's edition of The Mirror.

Board discusses new managerial position

School board members and Superintendent Richard Erickson discussed the duties -- and the title -- of a new assistant superintendent. They did not take action on the matter.
Board member Ron Moore advised using a different title.
"We may not want to call it the assistant superintendent," Moore said. "We may want a chief operating officer or a business manager."
Erickson had drawn up a list of proposed duties, of his and that of the new position.
According to Erickson's list, his assistant would oversee curriculum, policy, accountability, media, legal issues, vocational and federal programs and human resources, which would include training of new employees.
Among the duties Erickson would maintain would be interviewing and making recommendations for employee hiring.
Board member Leana Leslie asked why the person in the new position could not do employee hiring.
"It's a control issue on my part," Erickson said. "... That's probably some of the most valuable time that I spend."
Leslie said it's imperative that the manager of operations be able to handle human resources.
"The issues and concerns I hear fall under the human resources umbrella," she said.
Moore said it's also important that the new person work with policies and procedures.
"Making sure we do things consistently and we do them right," Moore said. "... I think that's one of the things we need to improve on."
High marks on audit
The Tonganoxie school district received a high opinion in its 2005-2006 financial audit.
Tom Singleton of Lowenthal, Singleton, Webb and Wilson, said the school district received the highest opinion that auditors can issue.

Board discusses scrubbers

The school district will take bids on two floor scrubbers. Bob Koontz, maintenance director, said the units were needed at the high school's west campus and at the elementary school.
Price estimates Koontz had obtained were more than $10,000, which Erickson said meant he would have to obtain bids.
In related business, board members approved the purchase of a walk-in refrigerator/freezer for the elementary school.

Board adds teachers

At Monday night's school board meeting, board members gave the go-ahead to approve the equivalent of six and one-half new teaching positions.
The new positions include:
¢ Tonganoxie Elementary School -- first grade teacher.
¢ Tonganoxie Middle School -- a vocal/instrumental teacher and English teacher.
¢ Tonganoxie High School -- science teacher, business teacher, a Spanish/French teacher, and three additional two-hour teaching slots in industrial arts, art and family and consumer science.

Classrooms for sale

The modular classrooms on the Tonganoxie High School campus are not there to stay. The two units hold a total of four classrooms.
Board president Kay Smith asked what would become of the units now that the high school construction was complete.
School Superintendent Richard Erickson said the school has a potential buyer from Topeka.
At Monday night's meeting, board members met for one hour in executive session, citing personnel matters. In open session, board members:
¢ Hired Heidi Menssen and Jared Jackson as assistant softball coaches and Jim Davis and Paula Wombwell as girls soccer coaches.

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