Goessel to receive building bids by Oct. 24

The Goessel school board heard during its Oct. 14 meeting from John Fast, superintendent and elementary school principal, about a ?pre-bid? meeting the next day at the high school.

Fast reported that Josh Walker from Loyd Builders of Ottawa had sent out 40 invitations to those who might be interested in bidding on the school?s construction/remodeling project. The meeting would provide information to the potential bidders so they can prepare their bids.

Potential bidders would see the site, and all would receive the same information at the meeting.

Fast said that bids need to be submitted to Walker by Oct. 24. Walker will check references, insurance and bonding for each one. Then he will present his recommendations to the school board.

The board decided to hold a special meeting at 7 p.m. Oct. 29 to approve the bids of major contractors for the project.

Fast stated the district?s desire to use local contractors and sub-contractors as much as possible. He expressed appreciation for Walker?s willingness to work with local providers.

Need for training

Turning its attention to another matter, the board heard Scott Boden, junior high/high school principal, report about an event he had attended at Agco in Hesston.

Those in attendance heard there is a need for engineers and for skilled laborers in machining, Boden said. He emphasized that it is an industry need, not just the need of one business.

Organizers of the event suggested college programs that would help fill the need. ?How do we get that message to students and parents?? one attender asked.

Other business

In other business, the board:

? heard from Fast that full-time student enrollment for the 2013-14 school year is 278, while the ?head count? is 282. The ?head count? number includes preschool students who have an individual education plan.

? expressed appreciation to Larry Jay for his fire prevention presentation to elementary school students.

? listened to a presentation from Andrew Voth, junior high and high school vocal music teacher. He is from Topeka, and graduated from Bethel College in 2013. He said he is happy to be at Goessel and received affirmation from the board.

? heard about EZ Messag?ing, which would allow the administration to send information messages to homes. For example, the school could send messages about school closings in case of snowstorms. Patrons can receive messages by email, voice mail or text message.

?That will be a useful tool,? board member James Wiens said.

? heard Boden?s report that the high school volleyball team won the Wheat State League championship. He said Goessel will host a volleyball sub-state Oct. 26.

? heard Boden report that cross-country regional competition will be in Wichita Oct. 26.

? heard from Boden that a special emphasis on ?making good choices? was scheduled for the week of Oct. 21-24. He said there would be presentations each day during academic skills time.

FCCLA members plan to share about driving and texting Oct. 21. FFA members will present on substance abuse prevention Oct. 22. Student council members will provide an anti-bullying/good choices presentation Oct. 23. A guest speaker from the Marion County Substance Abuse Coalition is scheduled for Oct. 24.

? listened to the audit report from Dale Clark of Knudsen and Monroe. Clark praised Fast and board clerk Joni Smith for their good work. He also acknowledged the work of Patsy Schmidt, the former board clerk, who retired.

Noting the good work of business administrator Chet Roberts, Clark said the school ?is in good hands.?

? heard that parent-teacher meetings are scheduled for Oct. 24. There will be no school Oct. 25.

? heard that junior high basketball practice begins Nov. 4.

? heard a report about The Learning Consortium from board member Darla Meysing. She said the monthly bills had been approved by email.

In addition to Goessel, the other schools in TLC are Moundridge, Hesston and Canton-Galva.

Fast told the board that staff had noticed the Internet was slowing down in the afternoons. Therefore, TLC is making arrangements to increase the speed. Goessel will pay one-fourth of the cost of the upgrade, Moundridge will pay one-fourth of the cost, and Hesston will pay one-half since it is a bigger school.

Canton-Galva uses a different phone company that does not charge the school for Internet service, so Canton-Galva is not included in sharing the cost of the up-grade.

? heard from Boden that he is gathering input from staff about options for up-dating technology for junior high students.

? heard a Marion County Special Education Coop?era?tive report from board member Kelly Booton. He said the MCSEC board has been discussing facility updates.

? discussed possibilities for board retreat topics. Board members suggested focusing on technology or common core curriculum, discussing ?meet and confer? issues, touring Agco, meeting with the Goessel City Council, or the community foundation.

No decision was made for the focus of the retreat, and no retreat date was set.

? heard about the Kansas Association of School Board meetings in Wichita Dec. 6-8. Fast and Wiens suggested it would be good for all the school board members to attend the meetings. Fast said, ?I think you would find it very informative.?

Fast said topics will include common core curriculum, technology, energy efficiency, Schools for Quality Education, and numerous other issues.