New Goessel scoreboard fully installed, board hears

The new scoreboard has been installed at the Goessel football field.

Marc Grout, junior/senior high school principal, told the school board at its Oct. 11 meeting that Ron Dirksen did the construction work, and students helped as they could.

The scoreboard was a gift from Kevin and Kathy Wray of Wray Roofing Inc. They had presented a $12,000 check for that purpose to the board at the Sept. 13 meeting.

Superintendent John Fast told the board the Wrays would be recognized at halftime of the home football game with St. John?s on Oct. 15 for their donation and for the work on the roofs.

The old scoreboard had been damaged in the June 2009 hail storm. The school?s roofs were also damaged in that storm, and Wray worked with the school to obtain a settlement from the school?s insurance company to fix the roofs. The roofing project is now complete at a cost of $434,805.

?We?re very pleased with all the work that was done,? said Fast.

Music program

On another matter, the board went to the elementary school music room for a presentation by Robert Tierney, grades five through 12 instrumental music teacher.

Tierney, in his first year of teaching at Goessel, said he feels honored to teach here.

?There?s quite a history in this town,? he said. ?It?s a pleasure to be here.?

Tierney said he sees every student in grades five through eight every week for individual lessons. He also has time for lessons with some high school students.

He said he loves the opportunity for one-on-one time.

?It?s real exciting,? he said.

Tierney asked two fifth-grade students to demonstrate the ?Smart Music? program. He said they each have had five lessons and were ?doing excellent.?

Tierney and the students showed the board how Smart Music uses a laptop computer with a microphone and projector. The program gives immediate feedback to the students and creates an MP3 recording of the music they play. It also creates a student portfolio of their own personal music throughout their school years.

Smart Music has a built-in tuner, metronome and fingering chart. It also has a grade-book feature.

Smart Music is a subscription-based program. Tierney said he would like for it to be available to all students. The students would need individual practice time. But the elementary school and high school both need sound-proofed practice rooms.

The high school does have practice rooms, but Tierney said they are not usable because they are not sound-proofed. The grade school has no practice rooms.

Tierney said core doors might be one step toward sound-proofing the high school practice rooms.

The board discussed options for further sound-proofing the practice rooms but made no decision at the meeting.

The board did approve the request for five Smart Music subscriptions at $36 per subscription per year. Computers, microphones and speakers will also be needed.

Buses and seat belts

The board discussed purchasing a new bus and the use of seat belts in district buses.

Fast said he is beginning to write bids and has been talking to bus drivers to obtain their suggestions. The new bus will be for Diana Schmidt?s route since that bus is next in the replacement rotation.

Fast said all school buses are ?seat-belt ready,? but only 1 to 2 percent of buses in the state have seat belts. Board member Maynard Knepp asked if seat belts decrease the number of passengers on a bus. Fast said they do: a 66-passenger bus becomes a 44-passenger bus because only two people can ride on a seat instead of three.

Board members voiced liability and insurance concerns and discussed compliance issues.

Fast suggested that three-point seat belts would provide less opportunity for mis-use and would therefore be safer than two-point seat belts.

Other business

In other business, the board:

? heard from Grout that regional and sub-state athletic assignments have been released. He said Goessel will participate in the cross-country regional at Mound City Oct. 23, and the volleyball team will participate in the sub-state competition at Burrton Oct. 23.

? heard from Fast that parent-teacher meetings would occur during the afternoon and evening of Oct. 25. He said teachers try to have face-to-face contact with the parents of every student.

? approved $16,250 for track repairs. The amount included $6,400 to replace the high-jump pad, $5,350 for a new track mat for the runways to the long jump pits and $4,500 for striping. Work on the pole vault pad has not been billed yet.

? wished a quick recovery for kindergarten teacher Sheri Janzen. Fast said two substitutes filled in during Janzen?s absence. He commended classroom aide Jill Booton for her work.

? heard from Fast that the golf fundraising event had been successful.

? discussed plans for attending the Region V Kansas Association of School Boards meeting in Newton Oct. 14.

? discussed plans for the school board retreat Nov. 9.

? heard from board member Darla Meysing that The Learning Consortium has not received a bill yet for relocating the fiber west of Goessel.

? heard a brief Marion County Special Education Cooperative report from board member Dan Miller. ?I think the co-op is off to a pretty decent start,? he said.

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