Employee handbook issues addressed
"Insurance payments for paraprofessionals are going to double from what it was last year-and that's if we opt for the least amount of coverage," said Lois Malliet. "It's a hardship on us. My insurance payments will be three times what they were last year, and we will have to make up the difference over the summer since it wasn't withheld because we're switching policies mid-year. It doesn't seem fair to have to pay the $500 deductible-which used to be $100-by December, and then pay it again in January.
"Also, the new handbook states that for employees who work less than eight hours a day, they will not be paid for snow days," said Malliet. "Would you allow us to use sick days on those days instead? Otherwise, we're going to get docked one day's pay."
The board discussed the issue, noting that on a snow day, it's a double-loss for the district in some departments. For example, no lunches are served on snow days, so no lunch revenues are realized. To then pay those employees for a day of work when no lunch services were needed makes for the double-loss.
It was noted that some employees will have only one personal day this year, with no emergency days, as they had been granted in the past.
"We're working with a budget that's been reduced by $1.9 million from two years ago," reminded Superintendent Tom O'Toole. "There's a general tightening of benefits across the state."
Board member Ben Huber said that two personal days is not unreasonable, and asked if there were a way to add another day. The board discussed the idea, and O'Toole informed them that they can add benefits after approving Part II of the handbook. The board then decided they wanted to have more clear language in the handbook and they wanted more time to discuss the matters of concern for employees. The board voted 6-1 in favor of approving the second reading of Part II of the handbook. Tom Neely voted nay.
Rhonda Hare, district reading coordinator, presented the board with summary of Title I/RTI data, as well as plans for 2012-13 to address reading and math goals.
Hare recapped the 2011-12 priorities and activities, and listed some 2012-13 priorities, which included:
• Continuing the "Reading Rocks" program at the elementary level;
• Continue math interventions as they were;
• Continue the same interventions at parochial schools;
• Continue half-day trainings at the middle school for RTI and reader/writer workshop-Tier 1;
• Go ahead with plans for the fifth and sixth grade "Reading Rocks" program;
• Pull students for math intervention during "specials" classes if needed, depending on the student.
Hare also reported that many reading students made significant strides that topped the national average. Growth gains in grades K-5all topped the national average growth rate, according to data from the MAP tests.
Response to Intervention (RTI) utilized new resources and improved strategy instruction over the past year, according to Hare. Other gains were made in fine-tuning the reader's workshop; collaborating and sharing ideas; response to student reading needs; and targeted student assistance and small group interventions. Hare said a "Reading Rocks" RTI program for grades 5-6 is being planned.
The accomplishments of athletes at the State track meet were noted, as well as spring athletic awards.
The board approved the following:
• Extra-curricular resignation of Brittney Erickson from her head softball coaching position;
• Extra-curricular hires of Justin Mc Auly (head wrestling), Brandon Mc Auly (assistant wrestling) and Adam Zuehl (assistant freshman football);
• Hiring Kristy Erickson as a 62 percent early childhood special education teacher;
• WASB membership for 2012-13;
• A recommendation from MC & E to hire Directional Drilling Services of Green Bay to install fiber optic cable;
• A services agreement with CESA 6 for AODA services.
The next school board meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. Monday, June 25 in the middle school IMC.
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