Tonganoxie school board praises TES class for food drive
Nichole Gurwell’s fourth-grade class received some recognition Monday at the Tonganoxie USD 464 board meeting after recently winning a holiday food drive.
Gurwell’s class collected nearly 2,000 food items for families in need as part of an annual challenge issued to all TES students by Tonganoxie Mayor Jason Ward in November. Gurwell’s class collected items in their classroom and spent a day at B&J Country Mart. All donated items were sent to Good Shepherd Thrift Shop and Food Bank.
“There was a challenge across the community to bring this food in,” Superintendent Randy Weseman said. “We’re pretty proud of the fact that this teacher, that class and the school as a whole kind of worked together.”
As per tradition, members of the winning class got to participate in the mayor’s Christmas tree lighting Nov. 4.
In other business, the board:
• Heard an update from Weseman on the construction of the new elementary school. He said he anticipates having the final permits from the city by the end of the month. The project is currently about $400,000 below the budget, Weseman said, but the district will receive its third — and largest — bid package on Thursday.
“This will show us where we’re at in the budget,” Weseman said. “If this comes in like I’m hoping it will, we’ll be in even better shape.”
• Voted, 7-0, to approve a resolution to begin an offering prospectus for a partial refinance of the 2005 bond issue. Roger Edgar of George K. Baum and Company discussed the terms of the resolution. The district issued $25.3 million in bonds in 2005, and Edgar said the interest rate has decreased from nearly five percent to about 2.6 percent since the bonds were issued.
The proposal is to refinance bonds for 2015 to 2021. Edgar said the refinance would save the district about $300,000 over that span. The resolution didn’t bind the district to a refinance. A separate vote to proceed will take place when the prospectus is completed, likely in February.
• Voted, 7-0, to accept a memorandum of understanding between the district and the Tonganoxie Police Department.
• Voted, 7-0, to accept the 2013 financial audit. There were no issues or instances of noncompliance. Certified Public Accountant Jim Long was scheduled to discuss the audit, but did not attend the meeting.
• Voted, 7-0, to approve the resignation of Ann Yates, head cashier/kitchen help at Tonganoxie Middle School.
• Voted, 7-0, to approve contracts for Cherish Calovich, part-time TMS bookkeeper (replacing Debby Kay Altman); Kyle Cobb, maintenance staff member (replacing Orville Sieg); Amanda Dyer, part-time high school art club sponsor (sharing position with Amy Johnson, who previously held full-time position); Greg Harr, special education bus driver; Julie Price, part-time TMS lunch cashier/kitchen staff (replacing Diana Smith); Tom Putthoff, special education van driver (filling vacant route left by Harr’s transfer); Diana Smith, head TMS cashier (replacing Yates); Karen Snyder, special education bus para (for new route driven by Harr).