Benton has organizational meeting on Nov. 25; looks at goals in work session

BENTON COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT 

IN THE COUNTIES OF TAMA, BENTON, AND IOWA, STATE OF IOWA 

BENTON REGULAR BOARD MEETING, Monday, NOVEMBER 25, 2019, 7:00 PM 

BENTON COMMUNITY CENTRAL ADMINISTRATION OFFICE BOARD ROOM 

304 1ST STREET, VAN HORNE, IOWA 52346 

Board Meeting Opened: 6:00 P.M. with a call to order by Board President Pat Stepanek. 

Present: Directors Becker, Feuerbach, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek, and Thompson. 

ABSENT: Director Reinhardt. 

Also Present: Jim Magdefrau, Emily Upah, Eva Bartelt, Tim Lyons, Doug Embray, Dr. Ewell, and Anna Upah. 

A quorum was declared present. 

Delegations, Communications, Considerations of Additional Items for the Agenda: 

No Additional Items for the Agenda. No Public Comment. 

Approval of Agenda: 

Action #60 Approval of Agenda 

Motion by Nolte, second by Thompson to approve agenda. 

MOTION CARRIED ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #61 Approval of Minutes 

Motion by Nolte, second by Feuerbach to approve meeting minutes as presented. 

MOTION CARRIED ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

BUSINESS SERVICES 

Action #62 Warrants 

PRELIMINARY WARRANTS 

ADDITIONAL WARRANTS 

Motion by Nolte, second by Becker to approve warrants as presented. 

MOTION CARRIED ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #63 Financial Reports 

General Fund Report 

All Funds Report 

Motion by Thompson, Second by Becker to approve Financial Reports as presented. 

MOTION CARRIED ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #64 Winter Activity Schedule 2019-2020 

Motion by Becker, second by Feuerbach to approve winter activity schedule as presented. 

MOTION CARRIED ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #65 ELECTION RESULTS 

Dr. Ewell and President Stepanek acknowledged Director Feuerbach’s service to the district as board member thanking him for his service and presented plaque of appreciation. 

Motion by Nolte, second by Thompson to accept election results as presented. 

MOTION CARRIED ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #66 ADJOURNMENT OF THE RETIRING BOARD 

Motion by Nolte, second by Ludeking to adjourn meeting 6:20 P.M. 

MOTION CARRIED ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

NEW BOARD ANNUAL AND ORGANIZATIONAL MEETING 

CALL TO ORDER – Doug Embray, Board Secretary called meeting to order 6:25 P.M. 

OATH OF OFFICE TO NEWLY ELECTED MEMBERS – Doug Embray 

Doug Embray Board Secretary administered the oath of office to Emily Upah, Theresa Thompson, Roy Becker, and Matt Nolte. 

ELECTION OF PRESIDENT AND VP – OATH OF OFFICE 

Action #67 Doug Embray Board Secretary asked for nominations to the floor for office of Board President. 

Question for nominations to cease. 

Motion by Becker, second by Thompson for Pat Stepanek Board President. 

MOTION CARRIED ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Doug Embray Board Secretary administered the Oath of Office to Pat Stepanek. 

Action #68 President Stepanek asked for nominations for the office of Vice President. 

Director Ludeking nominated Roy Becker for office of Vice President. 

Question for nominations to cease. 

Motion by Ludeking, second Nolte for Roy Becker for office of Vice President 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Doug Embray Board Secretary administered the Oath of office to Roy Becker. 

Action #69 Bus Bids 

Bus bid document 

■ Tim Lyons reviewed bus bids. Mr. Lyons and Dr. Ewell recommended purchasing 2, 77-passenger Hogland propane buses with seat belts. 

Motion by Becker, second by Nolte to purchase (2), 77 passenger Hogland propane buses with seat belts to be funded through Fund 33 with 8.8L Propane engine, and 5 year warranty, total cost $218,716.00. 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #70 Set Time, Date and Place of Regula Meetings 

Motion needed to set time, date and place of regular meetings: 

Current: 

6:00 PM throughout the year school year. 

Third Wednesday of the month. 

Benton Community Central Administration Office 

Board of Education Room 

304 1st Street, Van Horne, Iowa 52346 

Motion by Thompson, second by Nolte to approve meeting time, location, for regular board meetings as presented. 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

ANNUAL MEETING ITEMS 

Action #71 Resolution – Payment of Bills 

BE IT RESOLVED THAT THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS AUTHORIZE the Board Secretary to issue warrants when the Board is not in session in payment of freight, drayage, express, postage, printing, water, light, telephone, rents, and for payment of salaries pursuant to the terms of a written contract, but only upon verified bills filed with the secretary. The Board Secretary shall either deliver in person or mail the warrants to the payees. The Board of Directors also authorize the Board Secretary upon the approval of the president of the board, to issue warrants when the board is not in session, but upon verified bills filed with the secretary, and the secretary shall either deliver in person or mail the warrants to the payees. Each warrant must be payable only to the person performing the service or presenting the verified bill, and must state the purpose for which the warrant is issued. All bills and salaries for which warrants are issued prior to the audit and allowance by the board must be passed upon by the board of directors at the next meeting and entered into the minutes of the secretary. The board president will ask for a roll call vote. 

Directors voting: Becker, Upah, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek and Thompson. 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #72 Resolution – Check Signature 

BE IT RESOLVED THAT CHELSEA SAVINGS BANK, VAN HORNE, IOWA be hereby designated depository of this corporation, and it is hereby requested and directed to honor checks and/or warrants for payment of money drawn in this corporation’s name, to the individual properly endorsed with the facsimile signature of the Board President or Board Secretary, are printed thereon; and the Chelsea Savings Bank of Van Horne, Iowa, for such purported checks regardless of by whom or by what means the actual facsimile signatures thereon may have been affixed thereto if such facsimile signatures resemble the facsimile specimens duly certified to or filed with the Chelsea Savings Bank, Van Horne, Iowa, by the Secretary or other officer of this corporation. 

Motion by Nolte, second by Ludeking to approve as presented. 

Directors Voting: Becker, Upah, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek and Thompson 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #73 Resolution – Naming of Depositories 

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS of the Benton Community School District that the District does hereby designate the following banks to be depositories for the Benton Community School District funds in the amounts named opposite each designated depository and the Secretary is hereby authorized to deposit district funds in the amount not to exceed the amounts named for said banks as follows: 

■ Atkins Savings Bank, Atkins, Iowa $2,500,000 

■ Bank Iowa, Norway, Iowa $2,500,000 

■ Benton County State Bank, Blairstown $2,500,000 

■ Chelsea Savings Bank, Van Horne, Iowa $10,000,000 

■ Keystone Savings Bank, Keystone, Iowa $2,500,000 

■ Wells Fargo Bank, Newhall, Iowa $2,500,000 

■ Watkins Savings Bank, Watkins, Iowa $2,500,000 

■ Business Manager, Business Manager’s Secretary, Building Principal and Building Principal’s Secretary have access to Activity Funds and Nutrition Funds. 

Motion by Becker, second by Thompson to approve as presented. 

Directors Voting: Becker, Upah, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek and Thompson

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #74 Appointment of Secretary 

Dr. Ewell recommended appointing Doug Embray as Board Secretary for the 2019-20 school year for the Benton School District. 

Motion by Nolte, second by Becker to approve as presented. 

Directors Voting: Becker, Upah, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek and Thompson 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #75 Acceptance of Secretary’s Bond 

Motion by Becker, Second by Thompson to accept the secretary’s bond for Doug Embray issued by Employer’s Mutual Company, in the amount of $50,000 as filed and presented to the board. 

Directors Voting: Becker, Upah, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek and Thompson 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #76 Appointment of School District Treasurer 

Motion by Becker, second by Nolte to approve the following: RESOLUTION FOR THE APPOINTMENT OF TREASURER TO THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS in the Benton Community School District. Dr. Ewell recommended that Eva Bartelt be appointed as school district treasurer. 

Directors voting: Becker, Upah, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek and Thompson 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #77 Salary Recommendation – Board Treasurer 

Motion by Becker, second by Thompson to approve the wages paid to Eva Bartelt, the Board Treasurer set at $420.00 from Nov. 2019 – Sept. 2020. 

Directors Voting: Becker, Upah, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek and Thompson 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #78: Acceptance of Treasurer’s Bond 

Motion by Nolte, second by Ludeking to accept the Treasurer’s Bond (part of the District’s insurance package) for Eva Bartelt issued by Employers Mutual Company in the amount of $50,000. 

Directors Voting: Becker, Upah, Ludeking, Nolte, Stepanek and Thompson 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

Action #79 Committee Representatives 

Board members will be participating on the District Wellness Committee, SIAC Committee, and County Conference Board. 

Motion by Becker, Second by Nolte to appoint Director Ludeking to SIAC Committee, Director Thompson to County Conference Committee, Director Stepanek to District Wellness Committee. 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

ADMINISTRATION REPORT – Administration Report 

Dr. Ewell reviewed the administrative reports with the board. 

School Improvement 

a. ISASP – The Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student Progress (ISASP) are assessments developed by Iowa Testing Programs at the University of Iowa for the state of Iowa. The assessments are aligned with the Iowa Core standards and provide a clear and accurate assessment of student learning outcomes. Student growth, proficiency and readiness indicators will be reported. 

b. Unpacking scores and understanding our students’ results – in progress 

c. Scales & Proficiency 

d. SAMPLE ISASP individual student report 

e. Spring 2020 testing – March 30 – April 10, 2020 

Dr. Ewell and Anna Upah reviewed the assessment procedures, interpretation of results, and context for future assessment testing and reporting of scores. 

Action #80 Early Retirement Plan 

a. Dr. Ewell recommended approval for a 2-year early retirement plan allowing (certified only or certified and support staff) those eligible to determine if they wish to apply for FY20 or FY21. 

b. Documents and Plan provided for board review. Dr. Ewell recommended consideration of a 2-year plan and will explain the purpose and outcomes for a 2-year plan. 

Board will note that several of the documents are predated and times established for review with employees. 

Discussion by directors on offering early retirement incentive to classified and certified staff, reviewed cost savings attributes to both groups, reviewed qualification criteria, debated the merits of offering every year, not offering every year, or offering over multiple years, past legal guidance, financial tool for need, current and past tax rates, and district culture. Dr. Ewell highlighted the need to be purposeful with succession strategies and replacement of experience and mentorship to functioning of the school organization. Dr. Ewell highlighted the cost savings that has been recognized by the board when offered in combination with attrition. Directors discussed the enrollment trends for the district, new money recognized by enrollment increases in combination with the total salary settlements for each bargaining year and the continued negative gap between new money and settlement agreements currently being recognized fiscally. Directors discussed the district authority position and funding of retirement through management fund. 

Motion by Nolte, second by Thompson to approve early retirement incentive for eligible classified and certified staff, 55 years of age and 20 years of service to the district, at 35% of base salary or annual wage, to be offered for two plan years, (Fiscal 20 and Fiscal 21). 

Roll Call Vote: Directors: Stepanek AYE, Nolte AYE, Thompson AYE, Becker AYE, Upah AYE, and Ludeking NAYE. Reinhardt Absent. 

MOTION CARRIED 

Action #81 SBRC – School Budget Review Committee 

Dr. Ewell recommended approval for the request to SBRC for modified supplemental amount due to increased enrollment from FY18 to FY19 and for ELL for instruction beyond 5 years.in the amount of $150,766.90 

Notes & information: 

For increasing enrollment, ELL beyond 5 years 

■ School districts showing an increase in the actual enrollment from October 2018 Certified Enrollment to October 2019 Certified Enrollment have an opportunity to receive an on-time funding budget adjustment up to 100% of the enrollment increase by making a request to the School Budget Review Committee (SBRC), (IC 257.13, subsection 3). 

■ ELL – Iowa Code sections 280.4(3) and 257.31(5)(j) allow the resident district to apply for a modified supplemental amount to the SBRC to fund LEP instruction beyond five years for resident students served in the district of residence. LEP programs are also known as Language Instruction Educational Programs (LIEPs). 

■ Our request for a budget adjustment – $150,766.90 

Motion by Becker, second by Nolte to approve SBRC modified amount for increased enrollment, ELL, and instruction beyond five years in the amount of $150,766.90 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

FACILITIES AND UPDATE ON RFP 

Mr. Embray and Dr. Ewell provided an update on the RFP’s to date. 

We suggest that we schedule a work session in January to hear from the architectural firms who submitted an RFP and met the criteria. Suggested date for work session: Jan. 15, 6:00 p.m. 

Doug Embray provided an update on RFP process. Due December 9, 2019 with planned January 8, 2020 work session to consider finalist for selection. Vendors have been responsive to RFP and several have been touring district facilities for proposal preparation. 

Action #82 Policy 

Dr. Ewell recommends this item to be tabled due to the length of the current meeting. 

Motion by Nolte, second by Thompson to table policy. 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

■ Gifts, Grants and Bequests – 704.6 – CURRENT POLICY 

■ We do not have a policy on naming of district facilities 

■ Example policy – from Urbandale – Naming of District Facilities and Events 

■ Discussion 

■ Policy to come forward – 1st Reading – Dec. meeting 

Action #83 CONSENT AGENDA 

Dr. Ewell recommended the approval of the entire consent agenda. 

Motion by Nolte, second by Ludeking to approve consent agenda as presented. 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

PERSONNEL 

HIRES – RECOMMENDATIONS 

Volunteers 

a. Boys Basketball : Volunteers 

b. Girls Basketball: Volunteers 

Benton Regular Board Meeting 

c. Wrestling Volunteers: Volunteers 

d. Robotics Volunteers: Volunteers 

e. Show Choir Volunteers: Volunteers 

Approval of Minutes, Special Mtg. Minutes 

UPCOMING EVENTS 

Superintendent information 

■ SIAC information 

● Purpose 

● Members – last year & transition to this year 

● Anticipated meeting date – Jan. 6, 6:00 p.m., Central Office board room 

■ Enrollment data & trends 

■ Teacher Recognition 

● John Hayden – KCRG Teacher of the Month! 

● Anna Upah – Presented at ITEC in Oct. 

● And many others! 

■ Marketing ideas / sharing our story 

● Newspaper, live feeds of events if possible, increased Facebook posts, YouTube, podcasts, Twitter 

a. Looking into video opportunity 

● Planning for conducting a coffee-time in each community – superintendent 

● Mayor and Leaders – lunch and learn meetings, rescheduled date suggestions – Dec. 9 or 11 

● Nov., Dec. & Jan. school events 

■ Upcoming Board meetings 

● December 18 – 7:00 p.m. – Regular Board meeting 

a. Secondary counselors here – sharing what assessments/testing we use at the secondary level, purpose, data results. 

b. Planning to have elementary in Jan. or Feb. 

● Jan. 6 – 6:00 p.m., tentative SIAC meeting date 

● January 15 – 6:00 p.m. – board work session, listen to presentations from architectural firms – Q & A. 

● January 15 – 7:00 p.m. – Regular Board meeting. 

Action #84 ADJOURNMENT 8:30 P.M. 

Motion by Thompson, second by Becker to adjourn meeting. 

MOTION CARRIED 

ALL MEMBERS PRESENT VOTING AYE 

BENTON WORK SESSION 

NOVEMBER 25, 2019 

November 25, 2019 Work Session Opened: 8:35 P.M. immediately following regular board meeting. 

BOARD WORK SESSION – unpack detail/strategy and work on Goal #4 

Goal #1 – CURRICULUM 

Goal #2 – HUMAN CAPITAL 

Goal #3 – BOARD DEVELOPMENT 

Goal #4 – INFRASTRUCTURE AND FACILITIES 

Resources/handouts 

● Building Maps and Infrastructure 

● Certified enrollment & trend/projections 

● Elementary class sections, enrollment trends 

● Cooperative Strategies – continued discussion and quote 

Goal #5 -MARKETING AND CUSTOMER SATISFACTION 

Present: Becker, Upah, Nolte, Stepanek, Ludeking, Thompson, Dr. Ewell, Doug Embray, Ryan Junge, Phil Eastman, Jason West, Shawn Pfiffner, and Anna Upah. 

Resources: Building Maps, Capacities, Enrollment Projections, Sub Group Enrollment Data, Open Enrollment Out, Open Enrollment In, Trends and projections for building and district level enrollment. 

Discussion about building level capacities, East and West Demographics, Transportation dynamics for routing, shuttle, and activity, dynamics of rapid growth and impacts on building capacity, coordination with communities on school vision for grade level alignment, facility longevity, capacity analysis for increase and declining student populations, director attendance boundaries, appropriate funding for facility renovation, remodel, or construction. Expectations of Master Facilities Plan? Best approach to analyzing data and presentation of data on enrollment, facility capacity, staffing, and program needs. How do we manage the unknowns, i.e., Food Service, Transportation, Current building use by program, and specialty programs. Short-term 3 months to 2 years? Manage short-term enrollment growth, understand facility longevity, and address needs with current facilities. 

Work Session Closed 10:30 P.M. 

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