Low pupil numbers in 4K program
By Holly Neumann
Low numbers in the 4K class caused the Manawa School Board to lay off one more teacher for the upcoming school year.
Receiving a lay-off notice will be 4K teacher Emily Guentner.
“Currently we only have 18 kids enrolled in 4K,” said District Administrator Melanie Oppor. “We anticipated over 40.”
Oppor suggested that some things need to be done to actively recruit for this.
She also noted that throughout the district there is only one new open enrollment student coming into the district and three new applications for those going out.
“I think we need to call those families,” said Board Member Helene Pohl. “We need to find out what their reasons are for choosing another school over ours.”
In other business, the board decided to move from their currently self-funded insurance plan to WEA Trust.
“This has been a long process,” said Joanne Johnson. “The premium is comparable to last year, with an increase Delta Dental rate, changes in long disability and life.”
Insurance Consultant Mary Basel agreed.
“Deductible wise, everything matched up,” she said. “You are getting better coverage at much less cost.”
Board member Charles Hebert asked that the matter be tabled.
“I do not understand how we can move forward with this without more information on numbers,” he said. “How can we decide something when we don’t have all the figures?”
The board later moved unanimously to approve the move.
The board also approved the first reading of the new Multi-Sport Policy, with a two-sport limit, as per the Central Wisconsin Conference endorsement.
“Some parents are upset by this, but others think it is a benefit,” said Athletic Director Nate Ziemer. “I like the idea that this is for numbers and I like that we are opening up opportunities for our athletes.”
According to Ziemer, this could give a boost to such programs as baseball and golf that ran short on numbers during the 2014-15 school year.
“Some of the coaches are in favor of this,” said Ziemer. “While others are against it or have no opinion.”
Ziemer felt that only a minority of athletes will pursue this.
Oppor added that many approvals are needed before a student/athlete would be allowed to do this.
“The parents and coaches from both sports have to sign-off on this,” she said. “There are several layers of commitment that they will have to go through. It’s not just a done deal, because the student might want to do this.”