By Kelsie Hoitomt
GLENWOOD CITY – A group of roughly 20 agriculture and FFA supporters filled the room at the School Board meeting on Monday night after they heard word that the program might be cut.
The word seemed to spread after the Board approved the resignation of current Agriculture teacher, Lisa Jagielo.
So when the community comments portion of the meeting opened up, the Board heard from Bonnie Walters, Mary Lieffring, Kaitlin Konder, Kaylin Spaeth, Kayla McGee, Kraig Konder and Tom Knox.
Each expressed their passion for FFA and their concern over what would happen to students if a program like Ag would be cut.
The FFA group is a prominent club in St. Croix County, especially at fair time. They help sell beef and dairy cows and pigs as well as popcorn sales at community events. The FFA alum may also be taking over the tractor pull at the county fair this year as well.
Spaeth shared these points of view to the Board while expressing what agriculture means to her and the many others who devote their time and frankly their lives to this subject.
Once the comments were through, President Charles Rasmussen thanked everyone in attendance for showing their support.
Rasmussen reassured each of them that there has been no discussion about cutting the program, but that in fact, the Board just decided to post for a full-time agriculture teacher position.
The hiring process can be a struggle though as the Ag program is a delicate one in this area due to there being roughly 19 school districts that are looking for teachers and only 12 students have just graduated in that field.
Later in the agenda, the Board did unanimously approve the posting of a full-time position.
In other news, High School/Middle School Principal Tim Johnson, shared in his report that a handful of Board members as well as Administration and the School’s Attorney will be sitting down with representatives of Vista Sand on Friday morning.
The meeting will be at 9:00 a.m. in the Board Room and is an open meeting due to the number of Board members planning to attend. However, there are plans to go into executive session.
In other business, the Board approved purchasing and upgrade of the current phone system, which is bid out through Marco at about $51,872.89.
Also approved for purchase was the new intercom system, wireless wall clock system and visitor/credential management system.
Other items approved included the hiring of Donna Thompson as community education director beginning July 1, 2014. That couples with the hire of Darla Magsam as full-time in special education and as the district office administrative assistant beginning on July 1 as well.
The Board approved the 2014-15 individual teacher contracts as well as the individual administrative contracts.
The Board approved the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave for a teacher in 2014-15 also.
And lastly, a few minor changes were made to the Support Staff, All Staff and Teacher handbooks, which was approved as well.
Voting did also occur in the meeting. The Board voted on President, Vice President, Treasurer and Clerk and they agreed unanimously to keep each position the same.
Charles Rasmussen remained President, Judy Achterhof is Vice President, John Logghe is Treasurer and Lori Klinger is Clerk.
Lisa Kaiser also read her Oath of Office and took her seat for the first time in over a year as the newest Board member after being elected earlier this month.