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R-III Board Discusses COVID Staff Leave

A COVID update was given to members of the Holden School Board at its regular January 11 meeting.

It was reported that district staff members who have used COVID leave under the Federal FFCRA through December 31 was at 43 percent.

It was added that 13 percent of staff members have used all of their allowed COVID leave time.

Superintendent Dr. Mike Hough also reported that 45 percent of the substitute budget has already been used.

The District is currently slated to stay within budget on substitutes for the remainder of the year.

Dr. Hough noted that he had reached out to MSBA (Missouri School Board Association) and asked for possible COVID-19 leave resolutions since the Federal Leave Act expired at the end of December.

MSBA provided sample resolutions and Dr. Hough recommended the board approve the resolutions in new business.

The board discussed the resolutions and made a motion to approve a COVID-19 Leave Resolution, effective January 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022. Motion carried 7-0.

On the subject of COVID as it pertains to the Holden R-III District, Dr. Hough touched on the numbers reflected on the school’s COVID dashboard, noting that the numbers are relatively low at this time.

In a communications update, reports were given on guidance, social work, and Bright Futures Holden.

The counselors reported on each building’s task analysis, Signs of Suicide program, professional development, and goals.

They noted that the social worker and the cooperative agreement with Country Crossroads on-site facility in the H.S. is very beneficial to students and the counseling department.

Andie Smith, District social worker, reported on her duties and how she supports district families and counselors.

She also reported on the Bright Futures program and shared some of the ways the program helps provide students with their basic needs.

In a strategic planning update, Dr. Hough reported the invitations had been emailed out to board members, staff and parents/community members for the six strategic planning committee meetings to be held in late January and early February.

In construction business, Dr.  Hough reported he discovered a noise issue had not been resolved with one of the middle school HVAC units.

He recommended the board rescind the previously approved Heartland Mechanical payment of $34,692.20 and only approve the payment request of $29,663.20 until the issue is resolved.

The board voted to follow Dr. Hough’s recommendation to rescind the payment to Heartland Mechanical in the amount of $34,692.20.

A motion was made to approve the payment of $29,663.20 to Heartland Mechanical. After discussion, motion carried 6-1, with Sam Thomason casting the no vote.

In tuition news, the board set the tuition rates for the 2021-22 school year. The K-12 tuition rates were set at $10,078 per student, per year. Preschool tuition rate was set at $100 per week.

In other business, the board set a special meeting date to approve the ballot and honor all state softball players. The special meeting was set for January 19.

The board was reminded filings for school board closed on January 19.

The regular meeting closed and the board voted to convene in executive session.

In executive session, the board addressed personnel issues, approving the following resignations: Tanya Fuller, MS teacher; and Laura Lebold, extra-duty elementary tech leader.

Employments that were approved included Alivia Stanfield, fourth grade teacher; and Ben Kiger, extra-duty stipend to teach on his plan time.

Board members turned to the superintendent’s evaluation. After discussion, they agreed to extend Dr. Hough’s current three-year contract by one year, through June 30, 2024.

There being no further business, the board voted to adjourn the executive session. Regular session will resume in February.

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