By Cara L. Dempski
ELK MOUND — The Elk Mound school board approved a Fund 46 Long-Term Capital Improvement 10-year plan at their August 22 meeting.
Fund 46 plans can be created as a “trust” from a district’s general fund and are designed to be used for upcoming capital investments and improvements for districts.
The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction stipulates that funds deposited into a Fund 46 trust cannot be removed for five years after the fund is created, and may only be used after five years for items identified in the approved capital-improvement plan. Fund 46 assets may not be moved to any other district fund.
“If we need money, we can still get a loan from DPI during those first five years,” superintendent Eric Wright said of any emergency need for large expenditures.
Wright presented a plan to the school board that laid out what items might need replacing or regular maintenance over the next decade. Items such as repaving parking lots, increasing locker space in all three schools, completing roof repairs, and new transportation and instructional equipment were listed with projected amounts between $25,000 and $100,000 depending on the item.
“The amounts we use are flexible, most of the money listed can be adjusted,” Wright said of the plan presented.
Board director Patrick Rhude made a motion to accept Wright’s plan, which was seconded by board director Mark Oas. The board then discussed approval of the plan and unanimously approved the creation of the fund. Wright will discuss a sufficient amount to deposit in the fund with district accountant Mary Harrison and start the fund.
The school board also unanimously approved submitting a request for a demographic study to the Applied Population Laboratory at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Board president Tim Siverston said with the rate the preschool and elementary classes are growing, it would be advisable to have recent information. The last demographic study was completed as part of the district’s 2008 referendum.
“We’re still a small town, but we are a medium-sized school district,” Sivertson said.
Principals Eric Hanson, Chris Hahn and Paul Weber presented reports on their respective schools. Hanson reported at the time of the August 22 meeting, 85 students had registered in pre-school programming at Mound View Elementary. Likewise, Hahn inherited a fifth grade class that numbered over 100 students, raising concern over the district’s continued growth and how to house all the students. Weber indicated the high school has one of its highest populations ever with 342 students in grades nine through twelve.
The board completed its annual meeting prior to moving on to the closed session items on the agenda. During the closed session following the annual meeting, the board unanimously approved hiring Deb Meyer as a bus driver and Kim Lesmiester as an elementary aide. The board also approved hiring Courtney Holme as a special education aide.
Another item under consideration during the closed session was the teacher compensation guide. The board was in unanimous agreement that the guide discussed for staff during the 2016-17 academic year was appropriate for the district.
There was no action on the specific employment issues before the board on August 22.
In other business, the Elk Mound school board:
• Approved the resignation of Deb Meyer as a regular education aide.
• Approved changes to the student/parent handbooks for all three schools.
• Approved updated policies to reflect new graduation requirements, including the requirement for seniors to pass a civics exam in order to graduate.
• Approved updated policies to reflect revisions to student record notices and the maintenance and confidentiality of student records.
• Approved the previous month’s bills and vouchers for payment.