February 16, 2017
The Morrisonville Board of Education met on Thursday, February 16, 2017 at 7:00 PM in the Unit Office. The following Board members were present: Ed Goebel, Bob Gowin, Gerry Goebel, Bryan Fesser, Bobbie Harker, Dale Brockamp and Kevin Moomey. Also present were Superintendent Gary DePatis and principals Ann Little and Christy Willman.
The Board heard a report from the curriculum committee. Ms. Little had arranged for a presentation for an online software program which would allow teachers to use project based learning for the students. This program could be useful as the district moves toward its 1:1 initiative in the near future. It could also be used without 1:1 programing. This was presented to the curriculum committee as a chance to investigate the program and see whether it could be useful for the district.
Both Principal Little and Principal Willman reported on the MAP scores for each building and showed that the majority of our students are showing growth. The board commented that they would like to see the continued growth as well as the testing being done by the students to help inform the staff on what the students’ needs are and how they can help the students improve even more.
Mrs. Willman reported that the Pre-K and Kindergarten screenings are set for March 3rd and at this time there are only 12 students that have signed up for the screening. She also commented that next year’s kindergarten class looks to be around 17 which is more in line with what we have seen in the district in previous years.
Principal Willman also reported that the students are getting ready to participate in this year’s Jump Rope for Heart. Last year this event raised almost $5000 and we hope to be at that level again this year. She also told the board that the 5th grade students are working to put together a fundraiser for a program called No Hungry Kid. They are trying to put together a 5K run for this spring.
Principal Little reported to the board on the proposal for the Senior Class trip. The senior class is requesting to travel to Cincinnati, OH. There will be several activities that the seniors have put together in their itinerary for the trip and they also included the learning standards they will be learning about while on the trip, in the areas of science and social science.
Ms. Little also presented about the International Online High School, which could be used by students for credit recovery. These online classes come at a lesser cost that our current option and she requested approval from the board to utilize this program.
Superintendent DePatis updated the Board on the current backlog of money that is owed to the district by the state. At this time, the Morrisonville School District is owed $148,204 in payments that have been vouchered by the State Board of Education but not yet paid by the comptroller’s office due to lack of revenue. The district continues to receive the general state aid payments on a regular basis.
Mr. DePatis discussed with the board joining in a potential law suit against the State of Illinois due to inequitable funding from the state during a time when schools have been expected to implement new learning standards. There are several districts across the state that are trying to gather support to file a lawsuit to improve the school funding formula. Each district that participates would be asked to pay $1000 toward the cost of the law suit. Mr. DePatis explained that this would be to file the suit and get through the trial phase. If the verdict was appealed there could be additional costs involved. After discussing the issue the board was supportive of the effort but didn’t feel that at this time it would be prudent to spend district funds on this case.
Superintendent DePatis also informed the Board of the intent to retire received from Patti Christian. Under the contract she would be eligible for the retirement pay package and she is requesting this. Mr. DePatis told the board that she does qualify and the board will need to accept the retirement, effective at the end of the 2020-2021 school year, as she has submitted.
The following action was taken by the Board during the meeting.
- Approved the Senior Trip to Cincinnati, OH, May 11-14, 2017
- Approved the intergovernmental agreements with ROE 3 for the FOCUS, TriStar Academy and ChrisMont Safe School programs and the New Approach and Aspire Alternative High School programs for 2017-2018.
- Approved the seniority list as presented
- Approve the agreement for auditing services with Lively, Mathias, Hooper and Noblet CPA’s for the FY 17 audit.
- Approve the use of the International Online High School for credit recovery as an additional option for students.
- Accepted the resignation of Lela Ferrill as high school volleyball coach
- Accepted the letter of retirement from Patti Christian
- Approved the hiring of Ann Little as the Jr/Sr High School Principal for 2017-2018
- Approved the hiring of Christy Willman as the Elementary Principal for 2017-2018
- Approve the retention of Gary DePatis as superintendent for 2017-2018
The next regular Board meeting will take place on Thursday, March 16, 2017 at 7:00 PM.
The meeting adjourned at approximately 11:30 PM.