Goessel board notes 1-year mark for facility

The Goessel school board was reminded during its Feb. 8 meeting that it is now one year since the new building addition has been in use.

Scott Boden, junior high and high school principal, reported ?staff and students continue to appreciate the many benefits.?

He said the most obvious benefit is improved student learning space. But he also noted the reduced maintenance and upkeep in the new addition compared to the old classrooms. Students and staff have been grateful that there is no draft in the classrooms, he said.

John Fast, superintendent and elementary school principal updated the board on about developments in the Kansas Legislature.

Board President Dan Miller, Scott Taylor, Susan Nafziger and Tiffani Knowles had traveled with Fast to Topeka Feb. 3 to visit with legislators about House Bill 2504, which would have consolidated central school offices into county-wide regions.

The Goessel delegation met with Rep. Don Schroeder (R-Hesston), delivered letters to the offices of all of the House Education Committee members, and then sat in on the hearing.

According to Fast, ?Testimony was overwhelming against the bill.?

Later in the week, t was announced by the chairman of the House Education Committee that the bill would not be acted upon during this session.

?We will continue to monitor the bills proposed in Topeka,? Fast said.

Teacher presentation

The boards listened to a presentation by teacher Sherri Sells. She teaches sixth-grade science, math and one section of writing.

Sells told the school board about the robotics program and how she incorporates physical science, matter, center of gravity, math, cooperative activity, problem solving, and team-building in her teaching.

Sells described experiments her students had done in class. She mentioned the text books and said they ?are in pieces.? She told the board that ?a lot of our students don?t have Internet at home.?

Fast commended Sells for her work in teaching critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

PAT report

Lori Soo Hoo, representing Marion County Parents As Teachers, told the board the mission of PAT is to provide information, support and encouragement for parents of young children.

According to Soo Hoo, PAT uses four core components: personal visits, group connections, resource networking, and developmental screenings. Every child in the PAT program is screened for hearing, vision, health, language, motor skills, and self-help skills.

Soo Hoo shared two pages of national ?essential requirements? and said Marion County PAT had met the measurements by implementing all of the requirements.

Projections show that Goessel?s PAT assessment for fiscal year 2017 could be $4,593, although that amount could fluctuate if enrollment increases or decreases.

Other business

In other business, the board:

? noted that Goessel has been named a ?top elementary school.? Fast commented, ?We are not a declining-enrollment district. We are increasing.?

? heard from Fast that students had collected more than 400 items for the Tabor Mennonite Church Food Pantry. As a reward, the parent-teacher organization sponsored ventriloquist Greg Classen, who gave a program to the students.

?He was superb,? Fast said.

? heard January had been an unusually busy month with 13 home events. Boden expressed appreciation for the staff, parents and patrons who helped to make the events run smoothly.

? heard that the school had hosted a Numana food packaging event.

? heard that Goessel would host the state Scholars Bowl competition Feb. 13.

? heard that the Wheat State League is considering ticket prices and might raise the adult ticket price from $4 to $5 for next year.

According to Boden, many leagues have already made this change. He said a number of schools are having difficulty covering the cost of officials. The WSL has raised official pay in order to stay competitive with other leagues, Boden said.

? heard that the Class 1A-Div. 1 state basketball tournament will be in Dodge City this year instead of Hays.

? approved a junior high reward trip to Worlds of Fun near the end of the school year. Boden said students have to meet certain criteria in order to participate, including no more than three detentions, two ineligibilities or four tardies, no more than two office referrals for negative behavior, and a grade point average of 2.50.

Students will be responsible for $15 of the price, and they can sell Subway cards to earn the money.

? heard about school improvement day Jan. 18.

?It was a productive day,? Boden said. The new accreditation model was introduced. School counselor Janna Duerksen updated the staff on state assessment security and testing practices. Also, Boden said technology tips and strategies were shared.

? heard from Boden that staff had been implementing individual plans of study for high school students, in an effort to integrate career pathways.

? heard from Fast that the solar panels are now operating at full capacity. Fast said teachers are planning lessons on solar energy.

? approved policy updates from the Kansas Association of School Boards.

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