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November 27, 2017

Mid-Prairie Community School District      

   Kalona, Wellman, West Chester

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

November 27, 2017 – 7:00 p.m.


President Jeremy Pickard called the meeting to order.

Board members present:   Denise Chittick, Gabrielle Frederick, Jim Hussey, Jodi Meader, Jeremy Pickard, George Schaefer, and Marianne Schlabach.

Board members absent:  None.

Also Present:  Mark Schneider, Jeff Swartzentruber

Marianne Schlabach moved to adopt the agenda as presented.  Seconded by Jodi Meader.  Motion carried 6-0.

Public Forum

No one spoke.

Consent Items

Marianne Schlabach moved to approve the following consent items. (George Schaefer arrived at 7:02pm)

Payment of Bills

The bills as listed for November 27, 2017 and prepaid bills;

Open Enrollment Requests

Steve and Heather Brokaw request Benjamin Brokaw (Alternative Kindergarten), attend Mid-Prairie from Washington Community School District for the 2018-19 School Year;

Personnel Items

Contract issued to Shannon McCain, MS Assistant Wrestling Coach, $1,584 per annum;

Contract issued to Jeremy Meyers, HS Boys Assistant Track Coach, $2,745 per annum;

Resignation of Jeremy Meyers , MS Boys Track Coach, $2,135 per annum, effective 11/19/2017;

Fundraising Requests

Mid-Prairie Girls and Boys Basketball  requests approval to raise funds through sale of clothing and attire from November 6th to 20th  for player and coaches travel gear, volunteer coach salaries and scrimmage fees;

Mid-Prairie Baseball requests approval to raise funds through the sale of tickets to the MLB Cubs vs Cardinals baseball game in December and January for the baseball team to travel to St. Louis to play Washington Community Schools on game day of Cubs vs Cardinals;

Jim Hussey seconded the consent items.  Motion carried 7-0.

Special Presentations

State Representative Jared Klein

President Pickard welcomed Iowa State Representative Jared Klein to Mid-Prairie and thanked him for his availability to meet with the Board to discuss the different initiatives under consideration and debate at the state level.  Representative Klein shared opening remarks and recognized the District for being a leader in education in Iowa.  He discussed Chapter 20 changes and authorities given in the last legislative session and Home Rule changes for schools.  He also talked about initiatives for the upcoming sessions—school funding “plan for zero, hope for more” recognizing the many variables in play; Federal income deductions at the US Congress are unknowns; transportation inequities in education—MP’s costs are twice the state average; Sharing Incentives probably will not sunset—questions raised about expanding it into mental health professionals; and Expand usability of PPEL funds.  He then fielded questions from the Board including: Make up of Iowa classrooms—students, teachers, and administrators—are hampered by our reciprocity rules when it comes to diversity and the balancing of same with Klein agreeing that this issue is important on a number of levels and departments; and mental health resources.

Short and Long Term Planning

Second Reading of School Board Policy 503.4, Good Conduct Rule

Superintendent Schneider brought the agenda item for the board.  They reviewed the revised policy that was passed on First Reading at the November 13, 2017 School Board Meeting.  Board members questions surrounded how administrative regulations are processed and “informal hearing” definition.  Explanations were given on both.

George Schaefer moved to approve the Second Reading of School Board Policy 503.4, Good Conduct Rule as presented.  Marianne Schlabach seconded the motion.    Motion carried 7-0.

Substitute Pay

Superintendent Schneider introduced this agenda item by noting that current pay for teacher substitutes in the District is $120 for a full day and $60 for a half day with IPERS eligibility reached when a substitute has $1,000 of earnings in two consecutive calendar quarters.  The last time this was raised was in the 2012-2013 school year.  The District is experiencing a severe shortage of substitute teachers where the District is unable to find enough substitutes to cover teacher absences.  The current rate puts the District in the average range.  It is recommended that the rate be raised to $135 per day and $67.50 for a half day effective November 28, 2017, and that these substitutes be immediately eligible for IPERS.  This recommendation will put the District at the top of the substitute pay range for this area.

Marianne Schlabach moved to approve the increase in pay for Substitute Teachers for $135 for full day and $67.50 for a half day and immediate eligibility for IPERS effective November 28, 2017.  Gabrielle Frederick seconded the motion.    Motion carried 7-0.

Superintendent Mark Schneider’s evaluation by Mid-Prairie School Board

Jim Hussey moved to adjourn to closed session to evaluate the professional competency of an individual whose hiring, performance, or discharge is being considered when necessary to prevent needless and irreparable injury to that individual’s reputation and that individual request a closed session as provided by 21.5(1)(i), Code of Iowa.  Seconded by Gabrielle Frederick.

Roll call vote:

Gabrielle Frederick          - yes

Jim Hussey                      - yes

Jodi Meader                     - yes

Jeremy Pickard                - yes

Marianne Schlabach        - yes

George Schaefer              - yes

Denise Chittick                  - yes

Motion carried 7-0.

The Board entered the closed session at 7:46p.m.

Board returned to open session at 8:41p.m.

Work Session

School Board Policy 710.1 School Food Program

Superintendent Schneider introduced the review of this policy.  Discussed limits for negative balance and what point do we turn things over to the collection agency.  Currently the amount is $5 at the minimum and there should be consideration for raising the limit.  They do get a reimbursable meal if they are not allowed to eat.  Discussion, questions, clarifications by Board members on the subject helped to begin to guide the administration to bring a recommendation back for consideration.

Youth Athletic Clubs

Superintendent Schneider re-introduced the discussion of Youth Athletic Clubs, the Districts responsibility, and philosophy of participation.  These are not school sponsored.

Board Development and Inservice Activities

IASB Convention

The Board discussed their impressions and learnings from the Annual Convention in Des Moines on November 15th and 16th.  There was positive feedback from participants on the Mid-Prairie School Board’s presentation.

Announcements and Suggestions for Next Agenda

The next regular Board meeting will be on Monday, December 11, 2017, at 7:00 p.m. at the Central Office Community Room.  This is only meeting in December.  The suggestions for the next meeting include: A work session with Administrators; Staff Member Spotlight, A presentation on Project Lead the Way; and a Conversation on the Instructional Support Levy renewal.


The meeting adjourned at 9:33p.m.