Two open school board seats will be on the ballot this fall when Laporte School will hold a special election.

Sally Raddatz’s one-year and a three-year seat will be up for election.

At the July 8 Laporte School Board meeting, the board announced that Raddatz resigned her seat in a letter dated June 29. “Because of the future needs of the family business and the school board, I do not have enough energy to meet all the demands,” Raddatz said.

The board discussed going from seven to five members and was set to do that. However it turned out that reducing the size of the board must first be approved by a vote from school district residents.

Those interested can file for office from July 30 through Aug. 13. There is a $2 filling fee.

An operating referendum will also be on the ballot, as the district — like many others around the state — tries to pay for rising expenses. An operating referendum is a combination of local property tax levies and state aid that is used to pay for operating or capital expenses.

In the superintendent’s report, Kim Goodwin announced that the school received the special education Adsis Grant for two years. Laporte has to pay $285,000 each year to get the grant, which will be $342,000 over two years.

Goodwin said the district is currently receiving bids for the roof repair and trying to find out what the insurance company will cover. Because the work won’t be completed until late November, the kindergarten, one second-grade class and special education class will be moved elsewhere. Kindergarten will be in the community room, which will be closed for other uses until the roof work is completed. The second-grade  class will move down into the high school, and special education classes will go into the old computer lab and in the upper level of the media center.

A portion of the school’s roof was damaged by the heavy snow load last winter.

Board budget

A special board meeting was held June 29 to approve the fiscal year 2020 budget.

Preliminary revenues are expected at $5,541,660 and expenditures are $5,350,756.

In other school business, the board:

Approved minutes of June 6 regular board meeting.

Approved minutes of June 29 special board meeting.

Approved monthly and other bills for June totaling $810,847.

Approved MSBA membership renewal for the 2019-20 school year.

Approved hiring Hannah Fletcher as a 4-year-old program teacher.

Approved hiring Breeanna McDougle and Danielle Ausk as para-professionals.

Accepted Betsy Gorski’s resignation.

Appointed Joan Moorhead to the board treasurer vacancy until the reorganization meeting in January.

Revised the 2019-20 school calendar that includes moving the end-of-term and conference dates. This had to be done since the school switched from trimesters to semesters.

Discussed the Wildcat logo and coming up with one that can be utilized within both the academic and extracurricular arenas. The current logo has so much detail that apparel companies are unable to  reproduce  it for sports-related clothing, so Laporte sports teams have been using different logos.

The board and administration wants a single logo that is unique to the school.

The board thought maybe a contest could be held for students to submit a logo idea. They also discussed the new Sports Booster Club possibly heading this up and coming up with some ideas for a new logo.

There will be more discussion on this in the future.

Approved the recall list for non-certified staff assignment letters be sent out in early August.

Approved a resolution regarding board control of extracurricular activity funds; because of new state legislation, the  district has no choice about this.

Approved resolution for long term facility maintenance 10-year plan.

Rescinded Ehler’s Operating Referendum services for options 1, 2 and 3.

Approved Ehler’s Operating Referendum services for options 1 and 2. Goodwin felt the district could skip No. 2, which would save the school some money.

Discussed the data collections on decreasing enrollment numbers, particularly in the middle and high school.

Lisa Price will draft a survey letter that will ask “What can be changed to make the district better?” and “What is working well?”


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