The Goessel School Board thanks Ministerial Alliance

The Goessel school board met on August 12 and heard from superintendent/elementary school principal Dr. John Fast that the Goessel Ministerial Alliance had purchased nearly $1,200 of school supplies, including backpacks, and donated them. Fast said that two eight-foot-long tables at the school had been packed with those school supplies. Any Goessel school children were welcome to choose them.

The Goessel Ministerial Alliance has been buying and donating school supplies for a number of years already, and Fast said parents are so appreciative. The board noted that they greatly appreciate the donation too, and they signed a thank-you card to be sent to the Ministerial Alliance.

The board also accepted the donation of a water tank from Newton Medical Center. The tank is to cool off a student athlete who might become over-heated during sports practice.

Turning their attention to another matter, the board reviewed enrollment numbers. The total for preschool enrollment is 19 children, kindergarten: 22, first grade: 19, second grade: 20, third grade: 19 fourth grade: 15, fifth grade: 25, sixth grade: 24, seventh grade: 22, eighth grade: 24, freshman: 19, sophomore: 35, junior: 27, senior: 20. That adds up to a total of 120 students at the elementary school and a total of 171 at the junior high/high school building. The district headcount total is 291 students.

Junior high/high school principal Scott Boden said the enrollment numbers at the high school put the school on the borderline between 1A and 2A.

In other business, the board:

* noted that enrollment had gone smoothly at both buildings, and a number of families enrolled prior to the scheduled evening. Fast commended Lacie Hill for coordinating enrollment at the elementary school for the first time, following the retirement of long-time employee Denise Nickel.

* commended Londell Duerksen and Donna Spoonemore for their summer maintenance work at the elementary school. According to Fast, they have done a “marvelous job” of preparing the facility. He commented about the floors, also the new lighting and ceiling in two rooms, paint and new shelves. “We are fortunate to have a maintenance crew that cares so much in the work they do,” Fast said.

* commended Ben Schmidt and Tony Girard for their summer maintenance work at the junior high/high school building. According to Boden, they “have done an excellent job of preparing the building for the start of school.” He said summer projects included new carpet in three classrooms, painting, waxing floors, landscaping, and plumbing/electrical work.

* heard about updates to the fire system.

* heard about summer technology preparations that have been done, including checking old devices and setting up new technology equipment.

* talked about plans for teacher in-service day. Fast said that Rebecca Lewis Pankratz would make a presentation. He also mentioned that Heidi Goerzen would come as a consultant for understanding and addressing the social/emotional needs of students. After that day, she will meet periodically with staff and will be available if difficult student needs arise.

* noted that the first day of school will be August 22, with a fall sports preview on August 23.

* approved the purchase of a new 72-passenger Bluebird school bus for $114,859.00. Brian Linnens of Kansas Truck and Equipment worked with the school on the purchase. The bus will have hydraulic brakes and air conditioning. It will be the second bus with air conditioning. Bus coordinator Diana Schmidt thanked the board: “I do want to thank you for bringing in air conditioning. It is really appreciated.” Bus driver Jim Schmidt had attended a school board meeting a year ago when the board first decided to purchase a bus with air conditioning. At that meeting, Schmidt showed a picture documenting 120 degrees on a school bus without it.

* talked about bus repairs on the older buses that amounted to $77,000 last year. Fast noted that bus #1 is 19 years old, and bus #2 is 18 years old.

* heard from Fast that 18 elementary school students came for three weeks of summer school.

* voted to hire Jesse Brown as assistant high school football coach.

* voted to hire an athletic training service for $1,050.

* talked about issues with the junior high gym floor. It had been refinished in summer.

* heard that this school year the Kansas legislature is requiring 12 safety drills, compared to 18 last year. Drills for this school year include three fire drills, three tornado drills, and six security drills.

* heard a report from Alicia Cox, FFA sponsor. She had attended the FFA Washington Leadership Conference, along with one of her students. She said students were encouraged to leave a legacy in their own communities. Students participated in a “hunger banquet,” and students were made aware that there are children/youth in their own communities who are hungry. Students also talked about diversity, and they toured the holocaust museum.

* approved out-of-state travel for a student to attend the FCCLA Capitol Leadership Conference in Washington, D. C. September 30 to October 2, at no cost to the school.

* approved the Bluebird Backers booster club, which is a new name for the fund-raising partner for the school. Cindy Gaddis is the president.

* approved Brian Bina as the school district’s attorney.

* heard from Fast that The Learning Consortium board had met at Goessel earlier that evening. He said the new budget would require $1,000 from each member school instead of $2,000 like it had been in the past. Fast said the fiber is shared, collectively owned by all the member schools in TLC.

* approved the monthly financial statements of $50,237.57 and the 2019-2020 budget of $2,910,016.