RIVER VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT
Thursday, October 11, 2007
Regular Meeting
Middle School Library
7:00 p.m.

Board: Nelson, Ferguson, Taylor, Cates, Crowley, Cummings, Peach, Pronold, Lindsey Luther (Student Council Rep), Travis Kraemer (Student Council Rep)
Absent:  Caraway
Admin: Hayek, Hegland, Kaukl, Hoffman, Benson, Radtke, Palm-Leis
Others:  Sue Sadler, Herman Kaldenberg, Chris Schoenwetter, Aaron Joyce (WRCO), David Giffey (Home News), Paula Wedige (Administrative Assistant)

Acting President Taylor opened the meeting.  She noted that the meeting had been properly noticed and notice had been provided to the appropriate media and each School Board Member.  Crowley moved to proceed with the legal meeting. Cates seconded.  Motion carried.

Legislative Update
Taylor reported that public hearings will be held on several school related matters:  eliminating the mandatory nature of the Youth Options program; eliminating the requirement for school to be held at least 180 days but maintaining the minimum hour requirement; allowing school boards to pay for certain advanced placement exams with federal, state, local, or private funds; providing benefits to tribal schools similar to those provided to private schools; allowing a school district resident to object to the use of an ethnic name, nickname, logo, or mascot and requiring the district to prove that it does not promote discrimination, harassment, or stereotyping; and requiring school boards to adopt anti-bullying policies.

There will be a school funding reform hearing on November 15 at the State Capitol.

It is assumed that the DPI will proceed with their notifications of general school aids based on last year’s appropriation until the Legislature takes more formal action.

The WASB is opposing a bill to allow school employees to remove a student from school property or a school-sponsored activity if the student interferes with the employee’s ability to perform his or her job effectively.

Board Training Opportunities
Nelson reminded the Board of an upcoming Region 10 meeting in Baraboo on October 18.

Student Council Report
Lindsey Luther and Travis Kraemer reported that the student council will be awarding two $100 scholarships and also will be donating $200 to the Alicia Yanke Memorial Scholarship.  The student body has expressed a few issues recently including the biodegradable lunch trays and the announcements being shared through a typed handout instead of being made over the loudspeaker.  They are planning movie nights for the student body. 

2008-09 School Calendar – Delayed Start on School Fair Day (Friday, October 3)
There was discussion of some recent comments regarding the delayed start on school fair day.  With the delayed start, some feel that there is not enough time for elementary kids to see the entire fair on this day and that bus transportation is difficult when arriving at 10:00 after many community members have arrived for the 9:00 fair start time.  Others feel there is actually too much time for the older kids, even with the delayed start, and that this morning time is needed to finalize preparation for the fair.  This item will be discussed further by the Board and RVEA Negotiations Committees since the calendar is determined during the negotiations process.

Art Fair Committee Grant Awarded to School Band Program
The Spring Green Art Fair Committee awarded a grant to the band department for the purchase of a $2,600 french horn.

Benson added that the Spring Green Art Fair Committee may be requesting the use of school grounds to hold its annual art fair.

District Goals – Initial Planning and Implementation Report
Benson summarized and shared a draft of the staff newsletter, “Inside Out,” which reviewed this year’s district goals and provided an update.  The goals are:  Increase Innovative Support for Classroom Teachers; STAR Reading Assessment; 6+1 Traits Writing; and K-12 Curriculum Mapping.

Public Comments/Open Forum
Herman Kaldenberg congratulated all parties involved with changing the district’s health insurance carrier and the subsequent savings and would like to see the delayed start eliminated on school fair day.

Consent Agenda:  Checks, Invoices, Receipts – September 2007; Open Session Meeting Minutes – September 13, 2007
Crowley moved to approve the consent agenda items as submitted.  Ferguson seconded.  Motion carried.

Consideration & Action on Second Reading of Board Policies
The Committee approve revisions to the superintendent evaluation form and job description for clarification and to eliminate redundancies.

Ferguson moved to approve the second reading of Policy #225-Rule – District Administrator Evaluation to match the language in new headings found in the revised superintendent evaluation form.  Pronold seconded.  Motion carried.

Pronold moved to approve the second reading of Policy #445 - Student Searches to include language changes to require reasonable suspicion to search a specific individual but not to conduct random or blanket searches.  Cummings seconded.  Motion carried.

Consideration & Action on Budget Committee Recommendations
Hoffman noted that there was a reduction in special education teaching staff at the middle school prior to the last referendum.  The specific area that was reduced has increased in staffing needs since the beginning of the 2007-08 school year.  Although a support staff position has been added, the middle school is still in need of a special education teacher position.  The Budget Committee is recommending this new position.  Pronold moved to approve the hiring of a new special education teacher at the middle school.  Cates seconded.  Motion carried with Crowley opposed.

Consideration & Action on Special Meeting Date for the Tax Levy and Budget Change for the Year 2007
Hayek reported that since the state budget has not been set, we don’t yet know the generalization aid.  If 2006-07 rates are used, the burden will shift to the taxpayers.  Crowley moved to set a special meeting for Monday, October 29, at 6:00 p.m. in the Middle School Library.  Cummings seconded.  Motion carried.

Consideration & Action to Adjourn to Closed Session Pursuant to Wisconsin Statutes 19.85(1)(c) for Discussion of Non-Union Support Staff Retirement Benefits
Cates moved to adjourn to closed session at 8:40 p.m. pursuant to Wisconsin Statutes 19.85(1)(c) for Discussion of Non-Union Support Staff Retirement Benefits.  Pronold seconded.  Roll call vote was 8-0 in the affirmative with 1 absent.  Motion carried.

Submitted by Paula Wedige For Deborah Nelson, School District Clerk

11/09/07 pw