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December 9, 2019

Mid-Prairie Community School District

Kalona, Wellman, West Chester

Mid-Prairie Central Office Community Room, Wellman, IA  52356

December 9, 2019 – 6:15 p.m.


President Marianne Schlabach called the meeting to order.

Board members present:   Mary Allred, Denise Chittick, Gabrielle Frederick, Jeremy Gugel, Jodi Meader, and Marianne Schlabach.

Board members absent:  Jeremy Pickard.

Also Present:  Mark Schneider, Jeff Swartzentruber, Robin Foster, Rachel Kerns, Marc Pennington, Amy Shalla and Jay Strickland.

Gabrielle Frederick moved to adopt the agenda with one change, the Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student programs is tabled to a future meeting.  Seconded by Jodi Meader.  Motion carried 6-0.


Teacher Leadership Compensation Program

Superintendent Schneider introduced Kristan Hunter, Learning Design and Curriculum Leader for Mid-Prairie and the TLC Leadership Team of Glenda Seward, Frank Slabaugh and Shaina Gearhart to share about the Teacher Leadership Compensation Program for the 2019-2020 School Year.  Hunter first gave a historical perspective in the form of a timeline of the TLC Program.  Slabaugh shared about the current structure and roles of the Leadership Team.  The team shared about the supports provided in the form of Professional Partners for teachers new to the District and the Model Teacher teams within each building in the District, as well as across the District.  Hunter also shared about the Induction Program that is shared with Grant Wood for new teachers over a couple of years.  The Board asked clarifying questions about different aspects of the program.

Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student Programs

This agenda item is tabled to a future meeting.

October 1, 2019 Certified Enrollment

Superintendent Schneider shared the results of the Certified Enrollment.  Actual—also known as Budget—enrollment on October 1, 2019 was 1,276.32, an increase of 17.37 students over the previous year.  He reviewed the various detailed line items within the State report on the Department of Education Portal website.  Open Enrollment In of Full-Time Public Students is 204, compared to 193 the previous year. Dual Enrolled Students totaled 186, compared to 212 the previous year.  Schneider equate these numbers to revenue that comes to the District as a result.  The Board asked clarifying questions about Open Enrollment In and other aspects of enrollment.

Announcements and Suggestions for Next Agenda

The next regular Board meeting will be on Monday, January 13, 2020, at 6:15 p.m. at the Central Office Community Room.  Agenda items to include:  District Safety presentation, the only known items at this time.

Announcements:  Business Manager Swartzentruber announced a number of items: The Grant Wood AEA 10 Election Canvass of Votes with Carol Montz representing our District along with 6 other local districts; The IASB Day on the Hill is Tuesday, January 28, 2020--let Swartzentruber know if you wish to attend; and, finally, IASB regional workshops for School Board members from January 9 to February 20; again, let Swartzentruber know if you are interested in attending any of these regional events.  The book “The Ideal Team Player” by Lencioni was handed to the Board Members and Administrative Staff; the first section of 88 pages should be read during the Break and time allowed for discussion after the Business meeting.

Principals briefly shared happenings within each of the Buildings and areas of responsibility.


Public Forum– 7:00 p.m.

No one spoke.

Consent Items

Denise Chittick moved to approve the following consent items.

Minutes of Previous Meetings

The minutes of November 25, 2019;

Finance Report

The Finance Report for November 2019;

Payment of Bills

The bills as listed for December 9, 2019, Prepaid Bills; and Hills Bank ACH Transactions for November 2019;

Open Enrollment Requests – None Presented for Approval

Personnel Items – None Presented for Approval

Fundraising Requests

Cheerleading requests approval to raise funds through the sale of Pom-poms and Old uniforms at Winter events for the purchase of new uniforms and supplies;

Gabrielle Frederick seconded the consent items.  Motion carried 6-0.

Student Learning

Chapter 12 Waiver for Physical Education (PE)

Superintendent Schneider introduced and explained the Chapter 12 Waiver for High School PE. Due to Block Scheduling the District meets the in class minutes requirements but not the days requirement because of the Block Scheduling of classes for High School students.  The public was given an opportunity at this meeting for comment—no comments were brought to the Board.  As a result, an exemption needs to be applied for our students.  It is requested that the Board approve the application for the exemption.  The Board asked questions for clarification and discussed the pros and cons of implementation.

Gabrielle Frederick moved to approve proceeding with the application of Exemption of the Chapter 12 Physical Education requirements as presented.  Denise Chittick seconded the motion.    Motion carried 6-0.

Early Separation Incentive for 2019-2020

Superintendent Schneider noted that it has been 2 years since an early retirement incentive has been offered to eligible employees.  He recommends offering an early separation incentive for the current school year.  He explained the positive and conversely the detrimental effects of offering this incentive.  He explained the turnover savings calculations for both certified staff (teachers) and classified staff (hourly) at an individual position basis.  The recommended incentive for 2019-20 includes a monthly benefit of $655 for health insurance through age 65 for Certified Staff. Additionally, a Tax Sheltered Annuity (TSA) for both Certified Staff and Classified Staff will be offered based on the number of unused Sick Days, albeit the latter would be at differing rates depending on classified staff positions.  He also changed the date of the TSA payment from January 1, 2020 to January 24, 2020 on both documents.

Gabrielle Frederick moved to approve the Early Separation Incentive Plan as presented for Certified and Classified Staff for the 2019-2020 School Year.  Jodi Meader seconded the motion.    Motion carried 6-0.

Superintendent Commitment Statement

Superintendent Schneider shared the document that is normally presented for discussion and signatures by the Board and Superintendent the meeting after completing the Superintendent Annual Evaluation.   This signals the Board’s intention, not legally binding, to extend a contract, or not, for the next School Year—2020-2021.  The document was circulated and signed by Board members present and by Superintendent Schneider.


Approve the Purchase of Property

Superintendent Schneider shared that the District purchased at Auction on Friday, December 6, 2019, two tracts of land from the Kathryne M. Houseal Estate.  This came from process by the Board in Closed Session during the past three months.  Both Tracts are South of Highway 22 in Wellman and South of the High School Property.  Tract I of 15 acres sold for $10,000 per acre or $150,000 total.  Tract II of 13 acres sold for $12,000 per acre or $158,600.  The total of $308,600 will be drawn from the SAVE Fund.  15% was paid as a down payment the day of auction.  The remaining 85% will be paid at the date of closing, yet to be determined but before January 7, 2020.  Schneider noted feedback from the community has been positive.  He plans to write a letter to the paper to communicate the purchase and discuss future plans and options.  The first time Schneider was made aware of the availability of these properties was a phone call from a family member of the seller.

Denise Chittick moved to approve the purchase of Tract I and Tract II of land in the Kathryne M. Houseal Estate at the auction on December 6, 2019 for $150,000 and $158,600, respectively, with a total balance due of $262,310.  Mary Allred seconded the motion.    Motion carried 6-0.

28E Agreement with Keota Community School District

Superintendent Schneider introduced the sharing agreement with Keota for a District Librarian.  The agreement will be share Danielle Ramsey, Mid-Prairie’s Librarian 2 days per month.  Mid-Prairie will bill Keota on a per diem basis for the time worked by Ms. Ramsey for the Keota District including preparation time.  This is not a long term solution for Keota, which has a plan in place for future years.

Jodi Meader moved to approve the 28E Agreement with Keota Community School District for the shared Librarian position for the 2019-2020 School Year as presented.  Gabrielle Frederick seconded the motion.    Motion carried 6-0.

SBRC Resolution for Additional Allowable Growth

Superintendent Schneider noted the additional allowable growth resolution that, if passed, will allow the District to increase spending authority of $133,054 for Increased Enrollment in the 2019 2020 School Year and of $6,066 for ELL Beyond 5 Years.  Due to the downward change of two students on the Certified Enrollment count, the Increased Enrollment has decreased to $119,266.  These amounts are a result of the Certified Enrollment data from October 1, 2019, count date.

Gabrielle Frederick moved to approve Resolution 1209191 for increased allowable growth spending authority of $119,266 for Increased Enrollment and $6,066 for ELL Beyond 5 Years.  Jodi Meader seconded the motion. 

Roll Call Vote:    Gabrielle Frederick           - yes

                           Mary Allred                       - yes

                           Jodi Meader                      - yes

                          Jeremy Pickard                  - absent

                          Marianne Schlabach          - yes

                          Jeremy Gugel                    - yes

                          Denise Chittick                  - yes

Motion carried 6-0.

Work Session

Completion of Unfinished Work Session Items

There were no unfinished items from the Work Session section of the meeting.


Nothing added from earlier in the meeting.


The meeting adjourned at 7:53 p.m.