School board gets updates on task force


A variety of items received approval during the Wayne Community School's Board of Education meeting on Monday.
Superintendent Mark Lenihan shared with the board information from the Community Facility Task Force (CFTF) recent meeting.
He told the board that during the meeting, discussion was held on the "wants" and "needs" of the district and said the items that have been discussed are needs, both short-term and long-term of the district. These include the school's locker rooms, career education room and preschool (short term) and athletic and fine arts areas of the facility, along with expansion of the pre-school to support kindergarten (long term).
Committee members expressed a number of concerns, including the financing of the proposed project and the fact that agricultural land provides approximately 58 percent of school funding and residential property provides an additional 23 percent.
Lenihan told the board that a school is often a draw for people planning to move to a community, and added that the Nebraska State Activities Association indicates that extracurricular activities are "the other half of education."
Recommendations from the CFTF included not putting forth a bond for the 2016-2017 school year, addressing the immediate needs of the district and focus on the long term facility needs in upcoming months.
Board member Ken Jorgensen said "We need to stay on top of this and move forward or we will fall back. We need to do what is best for the kids and the district."
At this time, no additional CFTF meetings have been scheduled.
Policies receiving second-reading approval included those dealing with the employment and evaluation of principals and other certified administrative personnel, the release of certified personnel from contracts, parent involvement and personnel-certified employees.
Also receiving second-reading approval was the Early Learning Center handbook.
A health insurance quote from Aetna was approved.
Board members discussed the benefits of the policy, including the fact that the district is able to work with local agents Steve Muir and Gary Boehle when questions arise. The new policy will include a $250 raise in deductible, but employees eligible for insurance through the district will be re-imbursed this amount. Board members did note concerns about the fact that nearly 10 percent of the general fund budget goes toward insurance, and changes may have to be made in the future.
Bids for gym doors for the junior-senior high school, high school Social Studies textbooks and a kindergarten assessment program were accepted.
In other action, the board listened to a report from Lenihan on the upcoming year's budget. He said preliminary numbers for expenses show less than a one percent increase.
Lenihan also told board members that an AdvancED report came back very positive and the district has responded to areas that had been identified as areas of concern.
Reports were given by each of the administrators and included information on the upcoming graduation ceremonies, the recently held Spring Sprints, Bike to School Day and the first year of the Early Learning Center
The Wayne Community Schools Board of Education will next meet in regular session on Monday, June 13 at 5 p.m. in the junior-senior high school library.