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School Board Accepts Election Results; Honors Retirees


At the regular June meeting of the Holden School Board, members accepted and approved election results from the June 2 election.

The oath of office was administered to newly elected board members.

Incumbents Tonyea Inglis and Ray Briscoe were welcomed back and new member Alex Haun was also sworn in.

In other personnel business, the board recognized retiring teachers, Sally Burnett and David Riley.

Also retiring were Stephanie Atkinson, Dana Garten, Karen Talley and Sarah Watson. They were unable to attend the meeting, but the board will send cards to them.

In his superintendent’s report, Dr. Mike Hough shared the monthly MSBA (Missouri School Board Association) video.

The video explained that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the state statue that prevents schools from opening more than two weeks prior to Labor Day can be waived for this year only.

Schools that are interested in opening sooner must apply for the waiver and be approved. Dr. Hough said that the Holden School District will not be applying for a waiver.

“Many dates are already set on the school calendar and it would not be much help with COVID-19 to start early,” he explained.

In other district news, Dr. Hough addressed summer school for 2020. He said that it will all be virtual learning for credit recovery classes and that most likely, the district will not have in-person summer school in July due to a lack of funding for transportation.
“We will probably focus on having a great plan for starting in late August,” he said.

In old business, Dr. Hough reported the communications system bid of up to $525,000 that the board approved last month was finalized.

Based on input from the principals regarding the needs for each building the actual cost would be $454,000. That saves the district $71,000.

As part of the updated system, the clock and bells with the middle school and high school will now be aligned. The schools will all have small electronic message boards in the hallways.

In other COVID-related news, the board discussed the pass/fail decision for the 2019-2020 classes due to the coronavirus. They noted many of the students did not actually finish the work.

Dr. Hough said that the goal by the end of the 2020-2021 school year is to have everyone caught up and back on grade level. He acknowledged this will be more difficult for the students transitioning from elementary to middle school and middle to high school.

In a bond issue report, Dr. Hough gave an update on the items included in the current bond issue.

The foundation issues and roof repairs have been completed. The HVAC systems, lighting issues, and safety issues are all on the docket to be addressed next.

The science lab from the 1960s will also be updated. When all of the above are completed, the district will have approximately $100,000 left from the $4.5 million bond.

In new business, the board approved a $.10 increase in breakfast and lunch prices for the 2020-2021 school year. The district received a donation that paid the outstanding balances on lunch accounts for 2019-2020.

The board also approved bus transportation routes and chose the bid from MFA for fuel.

In selection news, they elected Sarah Abel as their MSBA delegate and Ray Briscoe as the alternate.

In a tax rate update, the board set the tax rate hearing for August 10 at 6:55 p.m. in the Holden Middle School library.

In R-III Foundation news, board member Georgia Jarman gave the Holden Foundation report. She said that although the Foundation was a little short on fundraising, there were a lot of outside groups who helped raise money.

She said the Foundation has awarded 82 grants, totalling $67,552.29 since the Foundation began. She also thanked all the Foundation members for their hard work.

In a budget update, Dr, Hough said Western Electric has agreed to waive the fee for 12 months for the Trap and Skeet Club.

Dr. Hough said he will send a budget survey to the new board members in order to get their opinions and to give current members a chance to re-prioritize if they choose.

The board adjourned the June meeting and convened in executive session.

Personnel items approved in executive session were as follows:
*Resignations – extra duty – Angie Smith, M.S. Academic Bowl; and Kim Hankins, M.S. asst. track coach.
*Retirement – Dana Garten, H.S. administrative assistant.
*New employment – Grant Guevel, H.S. assistant principal.

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