Informational meetings on referendum to be held in March

By Kelsie Hoitomt

GLENWOOD CITY — A pamphlet is going into the mail this week and will be delivered throughout the District with information on the upcoming referendum at the Glenwood City School District.

At Monday night’s school board meeting, Superintendent Tim Johnson emphasized to the board members that they need to really be specific in how they relay what is requested in the referendum.

There can be confusion on the language between the two questions and that is where the clarification needs to be given.

Voters will see two questions on the ballot for the April 7 election. Question 1 can be voted on, Question 2 can be voted on or both questions can be checked off and voted yes or no on.

The Board’s goal is to have both questions voted “yes” on, which would allow them to do upgrades on the office entrances, the elementary roof, the elementary pick up and drop off area, and to the heating and ventilation system; to name a few.

A more extensive list is found on the informational pamphlet.

If the first question is voted yes on, members of the District will see no tax increase. If the second question is voted yes on, there will be no tax impact.

And if both questions are voted “yes” on, the tax payers will see a slight change for the 2015-16 school tax bill.

The current estimation is that for a fair market property value of $100,000 there would be an increase of $83 yearly or $6.92 a month.

If the fair market property value is $150,000, the yearly cost is estimated to be $124.50 and the monthly would be $10.38.

If the fair market property value is $200,000, the yearly cost is estimated to be $166 and the monthly would be $13.83.

A more in depth public conversation will be had on Monday, March 16 from 7:00-8:00 p.m. at the Glenwood City Community Center.

There will then be another public informational meeting on Monday, March 23 from 5:00-6:00 p.m. at the High School Library.

The Board also heard from Elementary Principal, Betsy Haltinner on Monday night in regards to recent purchases made.

Haltinner was able to use funds to purchase 47 Chromebooks for the Middle School/High School and the Elementary.

Chromebooks seem to be all the rage right now and the students are doing wonderful things on these devices with the help of their teachers.

They are a combination between a tablet and a laptop and they offer different educational applications for the students to conduct research on, create projects and presentations, share work via Google Docs, etc.

Haltinner also reminded the Board about the Pancakes for Playground event that will be this Saturday, February 28.

The students, parents and staff will be making breakfast at the community center from 8:00-11:00 a.m. and deliveries to local businesses are being offered as well.

The funds raised will go towards new playground equipment.

Other business had at the Board meeting included the approval to no longer offer ITV courses. This is a part of the CESA shared services agreement and with this approval, the District will save $15,000 in that CESA contract.

The Board also agreed to hire Christa Blaser as the full time special education/ district office secretary. Blaser was the Library Aid so that position will need to be filled in time.

The Board approved a language change in the extra-curricular handbooks in regards to coaches and advisors pay.

All coaching assignments will be paid a percentage off of the same base now. In the past it was tied to the salary schedule, but that no longer exists.

The Board also approved a language change to the support staff handbooks in regards to percentage of health insurance coverage.

“The nine, ten and 11 month support staff hired prior to June 30, 2007 have had a decreasing district contribution to their health insurance. The district currently pays 80 percent and will continue to do so for this group,” said Johnson.