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District patrons no-show at school board budget hearing

Staff writer

School district patrons stayed home in droves Aug. 10 when board of education members approved the 2009-10 budget with only a slight increase over the past year’s budget.

The total amount is $6,043,302 with an additional $53,000 to support the Peabody-Burns Recreation Commission.

A plan to encourage USD 398 staff to participate in healthful activities in hopes of reducing sick days was discussed by board members.

Superintendent Rex Watson presented information on a corporate membership to the municipal golf course. An annual membership making the course available to staff and their families would cost the district $1,000.

After discussion of current employees with memberships, school facilities available for exercise and wellness programs, and trial membership options, the board agreed to accept a trial membership for three or four months in the fall and revisit the issue in the spring.

A motion to purchase the trial membership on a monthly basis passed, with Julia Ensminger opposed.

In other business:

  • Standard teaching substitute licenses were approved for Linda Allison, Danielle Retzlaff, and Rowena Sonmore. Emergency substitute licenses were approved for Arlen Busenitz, Marianne Siebert, and Sharon Suderman.
  • Student book fees were waived to provide some financial relief to district families at enrollment time.
  • Cheerleading sponsors Annette Elliott and Lisa Hodges reported the Peabody-Burns squad had received an invitation to participate in the Capital One Bowl Dec. 29 in Orlando, Fla. After discussion about costs, fund raising plans, deposit requirements, and participant contracts, the board voted five to two to allow the students to attend the bowl game and provide two Chevrolet Suburbans for transportation, student meal allowances, and sponsor lodging expenses. Gary Jones and Ensminger voted against the motion.
  • Business Professionals of America president Julie Wedel and sponsor Patty Savage reported about the PBHS chapter trip to a national competition in Dallas in June.
  • Board members tabled the selection of negotiation team members until the November meeting.
  • Jones was re-appointed to a four-year term on the Peabody Recreation Commission.
  • After two executive sessions, the board unanimously approved offering Matt Schroeder a position as a full-time shop aid.

Last modified Aug. 26, 2009

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