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November 28, 2022

Mid-Prairie Community School District

Kalona, Wellman, West Chester

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

November 28, 2022 – 6:15 p.m.


President Jeremy Pickard called the meeting to order.

Board members present:   Mary Allred, Denise Chittick, Gabrielle Frederick, Jeremy Pickard, Marianne Schlabach, Jed Seward, and Jake Snider (arrived at 6:19 p.m.).

Board members absent:  Jake Snider (arrived at 6:19 p.m.).

Also Present:  Brian Stone, Jeff Swartzentruber, Chuck Banks, Greg Jergens, Rachel Kerns, and Amy Shalla.

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


Hawk Highlight

Superintendent Stone introduced the Care Solace Program for School Communities and discussed the use of the program within the District.  This is a mental health initiative, service, program to assist our students in getting help for various social and emotional issues in an around the clock application.  The program will be funded with Title IVA Funds.  The Board looks forward reports on the program.

Board Member Dialogue with Iowa Legislators

President Pickard welcomed Iowa Legislators Heather Hora and Dawn Driscoll to the meeting.  He expressed appreciation for their willingness to serve the District constituents.  Both Driscoll and Hora introduced themselves and their respective roles in the legislature.  The Board and administrators, Hora, and Driscoll then engaged in a discussion of legislative issues of concern for the District.  Items discussed included the school voucher program, teacher retention issues, apprenticeship programs for teachers—paraprofessionals to teachers—and students, especially the trades for the students.  They encouraged folks to reach out at any time to give feedback and to ask questions.

Jake Snider arrived during this agenda item at 6:19 p.m.

Facility Planning Discussion

The Board continued discussions on the Long-term Facilities Plan and began to prioritize the projects identified to date.  Some preliminary costing was shared by Superintendent Stone using the priorities list.  He shared two initial scenarios for the Board to review and discuss and explained it further as phases. There was discussion on the approach to projects and the longer or shorter terms on bonds.  It is recognized that the needs do tend to change rapidly.  What are the top priorities and the timeframe for communication and education to the Public.  The Board discussed next steps and needed items: Reconvene a Facilities Committee with the constituency; develop a robust plan for September of 2023 referendum followed by other referendums in November of 2023 or March of 2024.  Students continue to be the primary focus of the projects and planning. The Board tentatively agreed to move the process forward as discussed in principle.


Public Forum– 7:00 p.m.

No one spoke.

Consent Items

Marianne Schlabach moved to approve the following consent items.

Minutes of Previous Meetings

The minutes of November 14, 2022;

Finance Report

None presented at this time;

Payment of Bills

The bills as listed for November 28, 2022;

Open Enrollment Requests

Don Waltenberger requests Anya Waltenberger (Grade 10), attend Mid-Prairie Virtual Academy from Pella Community School District for the 2022-23 School Year;

Nathan and Laura Kooyman request Julie Kooyman (Grade 4) attend Mid-Prairie’s Home School Assistance Program from Ankeny Community School District for the 2022-23 School Year;

Personnel Items

Contract issued to Laura Schmitt, High School Grade 9-12 Counselor, $43,451 per annum/21,502 Prorated;

Work Agreement issued to Jane Blieu, High School Paraprofessional, $14.67 per hour;

Contract issued to Jared Duwa, High School Assistant Wrestling Coach, $2,790 per season;

Fundraising Requests – No requests presented for approval

Denise Chittick seconded the consent items.  Motion carried 7-0.


First Reading of School Board Policy 802.4 Fixed Assets

Business Manager Swartzentruber presented the change to the Policy due to the change in IASB policy pertaining to fixed assets and GASB 87 Leases.  The capitalization policy moves fixed asset tracked from the current $2,500 amount to $5,000.  It removes language related to GASB 34 language and inserts GASB 87 language for leases.  The GASB 87 lease threshold is recommended to be considered only if a lease is greater than 1% of the previous year General Fund expenses, which would set it at $190,000+.  There are no leases near that threshold.

Gabrielle Frederick moved to approve School Board Policy 802.4 Fixed Assets on First Reading as presented.  Jed Seward seconded the motion.    Motion carried 7-0.

First Reading of School Board Policy 708 Care, Maintenance and Disposal of School District Records

Business Manager Swartzentruber presented the change to Policy to increase the current fixed asset capitalization threshold from $2,500 to $5,000.  This is to keep the Policy in synch with School Board Policy 802.4. 

Gabrielle Frederick moved to approve School Board Policy 708 Care, Maintenance and Disposal of School District Records on First Reading as presented.  Jed Seward seconded the motion.    Motion carried 7-0.

Student Learning

Closed Session for the Mid-Year Review of the Superintendent Goals

Board President Pickard stated that the agenda notes the Board will move to closed session to review the progress of Superintendent Stone as it relates to the goals the Board gave him at the time he was hired.  Superintendent Stone has requested this to be a closed session under 21.5(1)(j) of the Iowa Code.

Gabrielle Frederick moved to enter 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 requests a closed session as provided by 21.5(1)(i), Code of Iowa.  Marianne Schlabach seconded the motion. 

Roll Call Vote:    Gabrielle Frederick          - yes                                      Mary Allred                        - yes

                          Jed Seward                      - yes                                      Jeremy Pickard                  - yes

                          Marianne Schlabach        - yes                                      Jake Snider                        - yes

                          Denise Chittick                 - yes

Motion carried 7-0.

The Board entered Closed Session at 8:06 p.m.

The Board exited Closed Session at 9:24 p.m.

Work Session

Completion of Unfinished Work Session Items

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

Announcements and Suggestions for Next Agenda

The next regular Board meeting will be on Monday, December 12, 2022, at 6:15 p.m. at the Central Office Community Room.  Agenda items to include:  101% Budget Guarantee Resolution; Second Reading of Board Policies 802.4 and 708; Facility Planning Discussion; In January – Level I Investigators and Flexibility Transfer for HSAP Funds Public Hearing Set;

Board Highlights

  • Affirmed the direction of the Board conversations
  • Quieter Board Members spoke more


The meeting adjourned at 9:29 p.m.