Hillsboro schools to update wi-fi

by Sheila G. Kelley

Contingent upon the approval of e-rate funding, Hillsboro schools could soon have updated wi-fi, superintendent Max Heinrichs said at the Feb. 10 school board meeting. The project is designed to begin upgrading wireless access at the schools.

E-rate funds will pay 70 percent of the cost which would leave the district to cover about $8,000. “We will need to purchase access points, mounting kits, and access point management licensing,” Heinrich said.

District offices will also be upgraded at the same time with the district footing the bill.

Council member Jared Jost reported that two Project SEARCH graduates had been hired at Tabor College, one in food services and the other in the information technology department.

The 2020-21 calendar was approved. Students are required to have 178 days per year in school. The calendar has 14 days above the requirement for weather and other unforeseen events.

Heinrichs said the stadium operations committee purchased 10 new starting blocks for track. “We have one set that’s about 20 years old,” he said. “These will be one-piece blocks that won’t fall apart like our older ones do.” The committee also approved replacement of the goal post pads.

In capital projects, an outdated skylight in the technology center has been removed.

Due to the number of meals increasing, $2,000 was spent to purchase new kitchen equipment.

Eight donations totaling $1574.70 were received in the past month. From that total, Box Tops for Education donated $646.20 from families turning in their box tops from participating manufacturers. Box top collections will now be calculated through an online app where the customer scans their receipt and anything eligible will be automatically credited to the school of your choice.

Retirements were accepted from two employees, Maura Wiebe, elementary fifth-grade teacher, and Mike Jilka, elementary physical education and health teacher.

Maura has served us well over the past 25 years. She brought a lot of innovation to fifth graders, especially in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math), Heinrichs said. “Mike has been with us the last three years of his 28-year career. We were lucky to have him.”

Administrative staff contracts were approved. High school and elementary principals, high school assistant principal, and TEEN director will have contracts through June 30, 2022 while the technology director and business manager are in effect until June 30, 2021.

Alex Jost was approved for the assistant middle school wrestling coach.

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