Okawville School Board Fields Questions About Grading Scale

By Alex Johannes

The West Washington County Community Unit District #10 Board of Education held their regular monthly meeting on the evening of Thursday, April 26.
A large portion of the meeting concerned the current grading at the high school brought forth by a Okawville High School parent.
Jim Teter approached the board about the current grading scale and the possibility of it affecting students’ chances of receiving scholarships.
Teter presented a list of area schools’ grading scales and a worksheet in which the student missed only five questions out of the entire quarter and did not continue to receive an “A” in the class.
Teter stated, “I think it’s important for our kids to get the same advantage that other school kids are getting.”

The current grading scale is:

A: 96–100 4.00 points

A-: 93–95 3.67 points

B+: 91–92 3.33 points

B: 89–90 3.00 points

B-: 87–88 2.67 points

C+: 84–86 2.33 points

C: 80–83 2.00 points

C-: 77–79 1.67 points

D+: 75–76 1.33 points

D: 72–74 1.00 points

D-: 70–71 0.67 points

F: 69 or less 0.00 points

Okawville is one of the few schools in the area that continues to use this grading scale.
The board has previously discussed the situation, but has not taken action to change the grading scale.
Okawville High School Principal Keith Senior remarked that when they looked into the situation in the past, they decided to “not lower the standard of what we expected out of our students.”
Okawville FFA Chapter President Braden Meyer presented Paul Jansen, Daryl Frederking and Kurt Heckert with a token of appreciation for their efforts in supporting the Okawville FFA Chapter this past year.
Under Correspondence, the board approved the resignation of business teacher Carl Swift effective at the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year.
Rick Gaebe also informed the board of his intent to retire at the end of the 2021-2022 school year.
The board set the amended budget hearing to 7:45 p.m. on Thursday, June 21, followed by the regular monthly meeting at 8 p.m.
The board approved to set the School District Treasurer’s Salary at $1,400 per year.
Melissa Leadendecker was approved to serve as the School District Treasurer for the 2018-2019 school year.
Superintendent Scott Fuhrhop was granted permission by the board to sign off on the Post-Tax Insurance Compliance Report.

The board held their first reading of the Student Handbook to discuss the following changes:

Page 23: Remove “pagers” from the list of technology, as they are outdated and add smartwatches to the list. Add “if a student uses a device for any inappropriate purpose on school property, it will result in an automatic suspension with immediate notice to law enforcement.”

Page 25: Adding #10 to the list “use of social media for inappropriate purposes.”

Page 28: No longer appropriate to allow the handbook to have anything in reference to head lice.

Page 37: Change “homeless child” to “homeless student”

Page 39: Add “students are expected to stay the duration of the dance.”

Page 42: Take out the sentence “high school students are encouraged” in reference to the student lockers.

Any changes that are made to the Student Handbook applies to both the grade school and high school.
The board adopted the Prevailing Wage Rates for Washington County.
The board approved the resolution to abate a portion of the taxes as of now for the 2017 year to pay debt service on the Taxable General Obligation School Bonds.
In the Principal’s Report, Grade School Principal Leon Spinka recognized the PTO and all of their efforts in helping the school such as transportation, stipends to K-8 teachers, or buying t-shirts for students.
Spinka also remarked on the recent drills that they performed throughout the school.
Principal Senior thanked Principal Spinka and Mrs. Schleifer for getting the students through the recent standardized testing.
Senior also congratulated Jackson Harre, recently selected to be a member of the IHSA Student Advisory Council.

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