By Marlys Kruger
COLFAX — Following the annual audit review and budget review, the Colfax School board got down to brass tacks and conducted their regular monthly board meeting July 21 in the district board room.
District Administrator Bill Yingst received a preliminary schedule from the school’s insurance provider of when repairs to the school are expected to be completed due to the tornado damage a few weeks ago and it is hoped most of the work on the athletic field will be done in time for football season and the rest will be done by the time school starts Sept. 2. The elementary gym floor which needs to be replaced may not be completed, however.
Yingst also received a thank you from Jackson Schmidtke of Channel 18 News of Eau Claire for allowing him to see the damage firsthand from the storm and report on it for the TV station.
Employee contribution for the Wisconsin Retirement System will decrease to 6.8 % in 2015 from 7.0 this year and employer contribution will also decrease from 8.2% to 8.0 %. There is a 5.81% decrease on the renewal rates for the district health insurance for the upcoming year, and a 3.0% decrease for the dental insurance, which was changed to Delta Insurance.
The Department of Transportation completed their annual bus inspection and all Colfax buses passed with flying colors, thanks to Chad Johnson, head mechanic for the fleet, according to Yingst. Video cameras, used for safety issues for all 13 buses are being installed at a cost of $800 per bus.
After agreeing to keep all activity fees the same amount as last year, several motions were approved, including:
• Keeping substitute teacher pay at $90 per day and $50 for a half day.
• The retirement/resignation of elementary music teacher Jeffrey Langkau who had been with the district for 14 years. His resignation of middle school track coach was also approved. The district is currently looking for replacements for both jobs.
• Resignation of Jamie Buchholz as boys varsity track coach. Buchholz cited a busy family life as his reason for resigning. A replacement is also being sought for this position.
• Hiring another middle school teacher due to the large seventh grade class coming in this fall. The board will look for someone preferably with a grade 1-8 teaching license and someone who can possibly coach.
• Increasing current part time school psychologist Christine Williams from 40% to 60% for the upcoming year. She will move to three days a week from two days and will also continue to work in the St. Croix Central District.
• Changing the long term and short term disability carrier to The Standard company for the 2014-2015 year.
• A first time bus driver handbook for the upcoming year. Although it was a first reading and board members did not all agree on the wording on several areas in the book, the board approved it as a starting point noting some parts may be changed in the future. Six board members voted in favor with Jodi Kiekhafer voting no.
• Formed a policy review committee for the new NEOLA system which will include Kiekhafer, Ken Neuburg and possibly Todd Kragness and Joel Hilson.
Principals Trevor Hovde and John Dachel along with Curriculum/Special Education Director Polly Rudi attended a three day required seminar in Pewaukee dealing with teacher evaluation along with Yingst recently. Yingst read the monthly reports in their absence, with Hovde’ s report being a final wrap up on summer school activities. Rudi provided a time table of all assessments students in grade pre-K through 11 will be taking in the upcoming year. There was no report from high school principal Dachel but rest assured that will change by next month with all the school activities starting in a few weeks.
Total revenues in the general fund (Fund 10) were $8,469,739 while expenditures were $7,779,100. After other assets were totaled a balance of $1,868,715 was shown. The proposed budget for 2014-2015 is $8,514,477 and the total school levy is $2,750,896.