by Steve Peterson
West Sioux School Board was to discuss the options for interim principals in staffing for the 2013-2014 school year.
Presently Ryan Kramer is principal for Grades 6-12, activities director and programs; Carrie Thonstad is principal for Grades Preschool-5 and curriculum; Laura Hensley is the At-Risk Coordinator. All titles are interim for this school year.
Shared Superintendent Randy Collins said the interim principals’ evaluation process is continuing and a final recommendation will be made in January.
“Our options are to offer contracts or to seek applicants, and then the conversation (last month) turned to how to better support the current administration: allow us to continue working on the options, to work with the administration and let me continue to evaluate,” said Collins, “and I will come back to the board in January with a recommendation to open the positions up or offer contracts. That will give us plenty of time to see what the market offers and to communicate clearly to our principals what their status is.”
In other matters:
• The school board voted 5-0 to hire an additional associate for Kindergarten.
“Right now we have 25 students in one Kindergarten and they are stretched very thin this year. There are an additional 10 Kindergartners in the multi-age classroom — 61 kindergartners total,” said Grades Preschool-5 Principal Carrie Thonstad.
The associate is paid hourly and would be hired for the rest of this school year. The individual would start immediately.
“We would address it again next year,” said Thonstad. “If he or she was hired for the whole year, it would be about $17,000.”
Fitness Center update
School board members gave authority to use Activity Funds for a weight stand for the Fitness Center with the Booster Club paying half of the price.
Kramer and Chip Mayberry, a representative for sales of Developers Fitness of Eagle, Idaho, were present to speak on the project.
Mayberry’s firm had been contacted to help design the center by former West Sioux Superintendent Gary Richardson. The new equipment was expected to be delivered this week.
“I had an opportunity to present a proposal to the West Sioux Booster Club,” said Kramer, explaining to the board how this opportunity came about. “I was talking with the football coaches and Physical Education teachers a couple of months ago about their use of the facility. “
“The coaches and teachers asked about getting a quote for an additional weight stand,” he said. “It is the unit that has the West Sioux Falcon logo on the boards, and it has the actual free weights.”
“The first quote from Mayberry was $8,798, for the new unit (we currently have four of them),” said Kramer. “That price seemed very significant, and I thought we would put it on the back burner for fundraising.”
“The football programs and volleyball programs were able to adapt to the space, and the use of the equipment that we have,” he said, adding Mayberry later let him know the company who made the weight stand had gone out of business. “Mayberry said he was able to get it to the school at cost, dropped to $6,400.”
The Booster Club agreed to pay half, he added. “This will also help for Physical Education and our weight training programs for wrestling and basketball.”
“With our numbers, we have extremely high numbers and two days a week, all the programs are in training together and all told that is 46 students,” said Kramer. “I would like to use Activity Account Funds and the school would pay for 50 percent of the Fitness Center additional equipment at $3,286,” said Kramer. “This would definitely help us out.”
“Yoga mats, two-and-one-half pound plates for the female athletes, the dumbbells and the medicine balls have been purchased by the Booster Club so the female Physical Education classes are benefiting,” said Kramer. who also gave an update on the volunteer program to help supervise the Fitness Center in the afternoons.
That effort will begin this week with five volunteers. Teams use the Fitness Center in the mornings and students, on-their-own, use it after school.
“The facility will be open to all of our students, regardless if they are in a sport or not, Fall, Winter, Spring, they will be able to use the facility with a supervised volunteer,” said Kramer.
In other school business:
• Board members approved the Family and Consumer Science fundraiser to sell pies and other food items. The vote was 5-0.
• Contracts were approved by 5-0 votes for Mark Aldeman, freshman boys’ basketball coach; Jake Vander Hamm, assistant wrestling coach; and Yvonne Obbink, preschool associate.
A combined school board meeting was held with Akron-Westfield School Board on Dec. 3.
West Sioux School Board set the next school board meeting for 6:00 p.m. Dec. 17 at administrative offices. Meetings are open to the public.