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West Central Board Hears Reports

January 21, 2009 Regular Meeting of the WC CUSD #235 Board of Education

At the Wednesday, January 21, 2009 regular meeting of the West Central CUSD #235 Board of Education it was learned in High School Mr. Phil Geiser's report that the FFA has planned an overnight planning retreat at the Lynn Hotel in Biggsville.

Also, Board member Anderson complimented the custodial and maintenance staff on how the buildings looked when school resumed after the Christmas break;

The board was reminded by Supt. Ralph Grimm that on December 24th, the district received payments from the Illinois Comptroller's Office in the amount of approximately $720,000 and at that time the State stilled owed the district approximately $255,000.

Grimm said, as of January 15, 2009, the State currently has vouchered $445,000 to the district but the district has not received any of that money as of that date.

The board approved revisions to approximately 20 board policies on second reading. These policies will now be revised in the board policy manual.

The board discussed a proposal for auditing services from our current district auditor. After discussing the proposal, the board approved a three year agreement with the auditing firm of Cavanaugh, Davies, Blackman, & Cramblet.

The board accepted a gift of a 1996 Pontiac Bonneville car to the district as presented.

The board heard reports from building principals Buss, Nichols and Geiser, a curriculum director's report from Mrs. Serven, a special education report from Mrs. Farniok, and reviewed Mrs. Frakes' district technology report.

The board was given an update on the recommendations that came from the district curriculum audits and the status of implementing those recommendations.

The board's transportation committee reviewed the notes from their earlier meeting. As part of the discussion, the board affirmed the recommendation of the committee to continue purchasing fuel by the tanker load and not to attempt to purchase it in bulk as had previously been discussed. The board also affirmed their desire not to have any child board a district school bus on the school route any earlier than 6:50 a.m. The board reviewed some of the recommendations that came from the December 22, 2008 budget reduction meeting and agreed with the committee to host a meeting with a representative from Midwest Bus Sales to talk about several cost saving options that came about as a result of that December 22nd meeting.

The board was updated by Mr. Geiser on how the changes that the board approved last month regarding the WCHS driver ed program will be implemented in June 2009.

The board was given an overview of the State Textbook Loan Program for 2009 by Mrs. Serven. Mrs. Serven informed the board that this years State Textbook Loan Program allotment for District 235 is approximately $18,000 and that those dollars must be targeted for students in Grades 7-12. The board was informed that they will be asked to approve the list of textbook to be purchased with these funds at the February board meeting.

The board reviewed a five-year enrollment projection that Superintendent Grimm put together. It was pointed out that we currently stand at approximately 967 students and that by the end of the 2013-2014 school year our district enrollment is projected to fall to approximately 900 students.

The board discussed a concern that a parent had voiced regarding the earlier agreed upon May 17, 2009 WCHS graduation date. After a brief discussion, the board decided to leave the 2009 graduation ceremony on that May 17, 2009 date and affirm that the ceremony will start at 2 p.m.

The board was presented the list of approximately 35 budget reduction items that came about as a result of the December 22, 2008 meeting. After a brief conversation about the list, the Board asked Supt. Grimm to restructure the list so that the items listed are by fund. Supt. Grimm agreed to do that and then send it out to the board for them to review and perhaps rank order their preferences for the items to be given further consideration. This will be done prior to the February board meeting. This item will be placed on the February board meeting agenda again as a discussion item.

The board briefly reviewed a hand out regarding the West Central Teacher's Academy. The board was given an update on the status of the development and implementation of that program.

The board heard a very brief report from the Superintendent regarding the upcoming transfer of a small amount of district property on the north campus to the Illinois Department of Transportation. This transfer of property will be necessary to facilitate the restructuring of Route 94 and 34 intersection. Supt. Grimm informed the board that there will be two resolutions that they will have to approve regarding this transfer of property at an upcoming board meeting.

Under future agenda items, the board requested the following items being placed on an upcoming board meeting agenda:

The board entered closed session at 8:06 p.m. to discuss matters pertaining to personnel, specifically the Superintendent's evaluation and to review closed session minutes for the previous six months.

The board exited closed session at approximately 10:40 p.m. Upon exiting closed session, the following action took place:

The board also heard from CSC envoy, Sam Sudaker, approved the consent agenda as presented which included:

The board approved payment of all bills, the December activity accounts and the December 2008 treasurer's reports as presented. The board also heard a brief report from Supt. Grimm concerning the district's financial report. The board was also updated on the status of payments from the State of Illinois to the district.

The board was reminded that the next meeting will be on Wednesday, February 18, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. This meeting will be held in the elementary cafeteria.

Meeting adjourned at approximately 10:42 p.m..