Thursday, November 11, 2004
Regular Meeting
Middle School Library
7:30 p.m.

Board:  Anderson, Nelson, Pitts, Caraway, Pronold, Taylor, Peach, Limmex, Roske
Absent: N/A
Admin:  Benson, Hoffman, Palm-Leis, Hayek, Kaukl (arrived at
7:55 p.m.)
Others:  David Reichenberger, Todd Miller, Deb Miller, Ron Troxel, Vickie Bedard (WRCO), David Giffey (Home News), Paula Wedige (Administrative Assistant)

Anderson opened the meeting.  He noted that the meeting had been properly noticed and notice had been provided to the appropriate media and each School Board Member.  Peach moved to proceed with the legal meeting.  Pitts seconded.  Motion carried.

There was a moment of silence in honor of Veteran’s Day.

Board Training Opportunities
There is a legislative issues workshop on November 13 in Wausau.   The dates for the January convention in Milwaukee are January 18-21.

Legislative Update
Taylor noted that Dale Schultz is now the senate majority leader and reminded the Board to use the e-mail addresses given at an earlier meeting to contact legislators.

Student Council Report
The two student council representatives on the Board could not be in attendance.  No discussion.

Update Related to SWAL I and SWAL II Athletic Conference Alignments
Benson reported that beginning in 2005-06, this conference realignment essentially eliminates the relationship between the SWAL I and SWAL II schools and puts River Valley in a six-team conference with Lancaster, Platteville, Prairie du Chien, Dodgeville, and Richland Center.  The remaining eight smaller districts will form a conference of their own.  The schools in River Valley’s conference plan to rely on each other as resources for other educational and co-curricular areas, such as classroom instruction, band, art, etc.

District Goals
Benson reminded the Board of the four main district goals for the 2004-05 school year—pride, communication, information resources, and differentiated instruction.  Benson outlined several staff development activities this year that have focused on differentiated instruction and how to modify instructional practices to teach in the most effective manner.  It was noted that the acknowledgement of district goals is part of the Superintendent’s evaluation process. 

Discussion of Budget Deficit Strategies for 2005-06 and Beyond
Benson reviewed the Board’s November 6, 2003, list of potential budget cuts and revenue increases and those items that were acted on last spring for the 2004-05 school year.  Estimated budget projections for the next three years were also reported:  2005-06, $468,960; 2006-07, $893,070; and 2007-08, $1,203,485.  It was noted that if cuts are made in a particular year, the deficit for subsequent years would then be reduced.  Also, the continued use of fund balance will, at some point, require the need to short term borrow.  Benson asked the Board to give the administrative team direction to put together a proposal for 2005-06 to create discussion at the December Board meeting.

The Board reviewed a document summarizing State Superintendent Burmaster’s proposed 2005-07 budget and the potential impact on River Valley.  Hayek suggested that Board members contact legislators if they feel strongly about any part of the proposal.  He also distributed a summary of the Governor’s Task Force on Educational Excellence. 

Todd Miller voiced his opposition to TABOR and other forms of tax freezes that will result in less support for schools.

Ron Troxel urged the Board to remain focused on the core purpose of the district—the classroom—when determining budget deficit strategies for 2005-06 and beyond.

The Board directed administration to prepare a proposal for discussion of future budget deficit solutions at its next regular meeting, which will be held on Monday, December 6.

UW-Madison – University Theatre for Young Audiences Touring Program
Arena and Lone Rock Elementary Schools will be treated to a free production of theater and drama from a group out of the University of Madison.   The production will be followed by educational workshops based on the play.

Consent Agenda:  Checks, Invoices, Receipts – October 2004; Open Session Meeting Minutes – October 14 and October 21, 2004
Taylor moved to approve the consent agenda items as submitted.  Roske seconded.  Motion carried.

Consideration & Action on Policy Committee Recommendations
The Policy Committee met to discuss fees to be assessed for use of district facilities.  They also discussed the Board’s earlier decision to charge admission fees for music concerts at a rate of $3 for adults and $2 for students.  No action taken.

Consideration & Action to Adjourn to Closed Session Pursuant to Wisconsin Statutes 19.85(1)(c) for
2005-07 RVEA Collective Bargaining Update and a Level IV Grievance Conference
Limmex moved to adjourn to closed session at 8:25 p.m. pursuant to Wisconsin Statutes 19.85(1)(c) for 2005-07 RVEA Collective Bargaining Update and a Level IV Grievance Conference.  Caraway seconded.  Polled vote was 9-0 in the affirmative.  Motion carried.   

Submitted by Paula Wedige For Deborah Nelson, School District Clerk

03/10/08 pw