CPS board approves wellness plan, summer school

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

After brief discussions led by Superintendent Mary Beth Scherer, the Concordia R-2 Board of Education approved the district health and wellness plan and the 2015 summer school schedule at its meeting Thursday, Dec. 8.

Prior to the approvals, Scherer noted current board members Jennifer Foster and Robert Hemme filed to fill the two open positions on the board for the April ballot. If no other person files for the board by the Tuesday, Jan. 20, deadline; however, no election will be necessary.

Scherer also related the district has received an I-TV grant through the school's I-TV consortium -- WeMet.

"They will be installing the new I-TV equipment in February," she said. "Once it's installed we'll be all modern, and we'll have a little tour."

The discussion turned to the health and wellness plan. According to Scherer, a federal law passed in 2010 requires all public school districts to develop a health and wellness plan. A draft plan was recently completed.

"The rationale, the purpose, the goals -- those standards all come from board policy," Scherer explained.

The plan includes four goals, with the first focusing on lifelong-wellness behaviors. The plan will also ensure district nutrition guidelines are met.

"...We're encouraging our kids to drink water throughout the school day, but also providing additional information for our families," Scherer said.

The health and wellness plan doesn't just focus on students, but also includes the well-being of staff. According to Scherer, the district has reinstated the walking challenge for faculty and staff, who have logged 7,600 miles so far. Scherer said 45 staff members submitted mileage charts from a period of 129 days. She noted the health and wellness plan will be revised on a yearly basis.

The board reviewed summer school and its associated costs. According to information provided by Scherer, last year's summer school cost about $22,000 through staffing and transportation. However, after state revenue of nearly $20,000, it cost the district approximately $2,000 to conduct summer school.

"Our goal each year is to break even, or to come as close to breaking even as possible," Scherer noted. "It is funded based on the number of students who are enrolled in summer school."

She added Concordia is not a district that receives a lot of state funding, when compared to other districts, due to the community's assessed valuation. This means the district has a harder time breaking even, according to Scherer.

"It's a good service that we provide for our kids. ... We generally have a fairly large amount from St. Paul's (Lutheran School) that attend," she said.

The 2015 summer school is scheduled for June 8-26.

In a closed session, sixth-grade teacher J.K. Bayse was hired as the 2015 summer school coordinator, and Scherer's contract was renewed for two more years through 2017.

The next regular meeting of the school board is Thursday, Feb. 12. Six members were present at Thursday's meeting.

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