The Goessel school board voted at its Jan. 13 meeting to accept two anonymous donations from patrons.
John Fast, superintendent and elementary school principal, said the music depart???ment had received a $500 donation, and the Selzer Scholarship fund had received $50.
Fast said the donations were greatly appreciated.
?Funding is tight,? he said. ?I?m really humbled when a person comes and wants to make a donation.?
Scott Boden, junior and senior high principal, told the board the school had received a $1,000 grant from Blue Cross Blue Shield for fitness balls.
Gina Bergin, family consumer science and seventh-grade science teacher, had written the grant for the balls. Boden commended her for her work thanked Blue Cross Blue Shield.
The board listened to a teacher presentation by the new K-12 art teacher, Kacie McGee. She has lived at Burrton, Stafford and Larned, where she graduated from high school. She is a recent Kansas State University graduate.
She tutored K-State football students and taught art for home-schooled students. She also was a substitute teacher for the Manhattan school district. She resides in North Newton.
McGee said she likes to teach the principles of art and introduce her students to art careers, artists and art movements. She includes photography, movement, texture, graphic design, word art, thirds, infographics, information with pictures, monochromatic painting, water color, triptych, printmaking, pop art, self-portrait, analogous color painting, impressionism (painting light instead of an image), prehistoric art, and fruit print-making, as well as other art concepts.
She also teaches her students to use recycled items to create art.
McGee said she appreciates the one-on-one teaching time with students in her smaller classes, and she enjoys the interaction in her larger classes, too.
Fast and Boden commended her for her work and appreciate her enthusiasm for teaching.
In other business, the school board:
? heard that Jody Fensky has resigned as a para. She has worked in the Goessel school district for 18 years. She also helped with the box-top collection project. Fast commended Fensky for her work and said she will be missed.
? heard from Boden that students in the junior/senior high school building had developed five ?pillars? that they hope to promote. Bluebirds should be leaders, respectful, honest, supportive and responsible. Boden said student discussions led to these ?pillars.?
? heard from Boden that the one-on-one laptop computer initiative at the high school is working out well. He said students and staff appreciate the improved access; it is helpful that students now have technology access in every classroom.
He said a $50 technology fee allows students to take the laptops home. However, some students have access to a computer at home and don?t feel a need to take their school laptop home.
? heard from Boden that students are ?very busy? with basketball, Scholars Bowl and music events, with multiple events every week.
? heard the high school music trip was adjusted to better accommodate the trip to a music contest in Texas. Band and choir members will leave March 27 and return March 29. Students are conducting fundraisers to help pay for the trip.
? reviewed bids for a vehicle to replace the school?s Suburban, which was involved in a weather-related accident.
The board approved the bid of $23,000 from Midway Motors for a full-size, eight-passenger 2014 Ford Econo?line van. With adjustments, the actual cost will be $19,825. In the meantime, school cars have been used to transport students.
? heard the school?s vehicles are on the road almost constantly. For example, Fast said one vehicle makes three trips to Newton every day for students in the vehicle technology classes. Students are not allowed to drive themselves to those classes.
Other examples would be the vehicle that transports students to the OASIS school and a vehicle that transports students to other special needs opportunities.
? heard that board member James Wiens was planning to go to Topeka later in the week to attend government relations sessions. Board chairman Dan Miller thanked him for taking time to go.
? listened as Wiens commended the community for its support in the school?s construction and remodeling project.
?As a board, we?ve done a pretty good job of involving our community whenever we could,? he said.
? heard that the old shop was demolished Dec. 16. Boden said power was rerouted underground over the holiday break. Fast said the sewer line had been relocated.
? heard from Fast that Josh Walker and Seth Martin of Loyd Builders held another pre-bid meeting. Eighteen people from nine companies attended. Bids are due Jan. 20, and a list of bidders will be ready for the board to consider at the Feb. 10 board meeting. Fast is hoping that the construction/remodeling project can be done by mid-fall.
? heard that Wiens had spent a day at school; he talked with every teacher at the elementary school and visited every classroom. He also ate lunch at the school and visited the junior high as well.
He said he was impressed by what he observed and is happy that his own children are in school at Goessel.
? heard from Fast that the staff had appreciated Wiens?s visit. He suggested other board members visit the schools, too.
? wished to thank high school business teacher Tyler Schroeder for his work on the yearbook. Boden said this year the yearbook will be published through TreeRing. The cost will be less than half of the previous cost.
? noted that school improvement day was scheduled for Jan. 20; there will be no students at the school that day.
Fast said staff will work on reviewing Common Core objectives in writing, developing a plan for the spring gardening project, using the Lexia online reading program, reviewing the emergency procedures for possible lock-down situations and reviewing student progress and strategies for helping students who struggle academically.
? heard that the junior high spelling bee would be Jan. 27.
? heard that Fast, Wiens, and Miller had gone to Salina for training for the new evaluation system. They said the new system is time-consuming.
? entered into executive session to discuss personnel evaluations. No decisions were made when the open session resumed.