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NCHS School Board Meets Last Tuesday, Sept. 21st

The Nashville Community High School Board of Education met last Thursday for their monthly meeting. Superintendent Turner began the meeting by giving the summary of the 2021-22 budget comparison. In the education fund, the numbers are higher this year compared to last year. 

“There’s about an extra four to five hundred thousand dollars that KSED is telling me is going to flow through us for the Hoyleton Children’s Home because we were short one payment last year,” Turner said. “That’s about an extra 1.2-1.3 million that they’re telling me we’re going to get that’s going to flow through us for the children’s home.”

Increases in state revenue, local revenue, tax levies, etc. are some of the reasons for the spike in numbers. The projected receipts over revenue for the education fund is a $75,029 surplus. Operations and maintenance about $24,000, debt service, which is “very minimal” each year is $200. Superintendent Turner is expecting a deficit in the transportation fund. 

“We will have more transportation costs this year than we did last year just because of all of our seasons. Our contract increases six percent each year with extra curriculars, we will have a lot more than we had last year,” said Turner. 

For working cash, the $97,000 is their tax levy. The tort fund, which is used for risk management salaries and costs, the projection is about a $20,000 surplus. The expectation on June 30, 2022 is to have a positive fund balance in each category. 

A motion was carried to accept the consented agenda of items a-f. A- minutes of regular meeting held on August 17, 2021, b- minutes of closed session held on August 17, 2021, c- minutes of special meeting held on September 10, 2021, d-minutes of closed session held on September 10, 2021, e- September bills, and f- September payroll. 

Onto the treasury report, fund balances are “good.” In August the school received their first two EBF state aid payments. On Thursday, they received their first tax installment from Washington County, which was over $400,000. 

Following the treasurer’s report, Bob Konkel gave a presentation in front of the board. 

“In the history of our school district, I think we’ve always been proud. We could always pay for what we needed when we got it. The thing is now, I think we’re paying for our own, but also paying for other people’s,” said Konkel. “They talk about COVID relief funds and health life safety, all of this money is out there, do we have to check into it? Is there something that maybe we need to be checking on?” asked Konkel. 

He then spoke on behalf of the air conditioning lining project in the high school gym. 

“I think that’s a need,” said Konkel. “We’ve all dealt with the heat, but what is the humidity doing to our facility? The chairs, the floor, are we having to spend more maintenance dollars on those things than maybe we wouldn’t have to?” asked Konkel. 

Konkel noted he’s been paying attention to other schools and the different systems they have. 

“Those south doors just kill us. In the winter time at a basketball game it’s going to be coming in, and during volleyball now we try to force it in from our other air conditioners, putting more tax on them,” said Konkel. “If you produce it and lose it, then you’re just going to pay for it. Maybe we just need to look into saving what we have.” 

The came time for the Principal’s Report which was given by Mark Begando. 

“I just want to start by saying the teachers are pushing the kids really hard. The learning is taking place at a really high level. I feel like this time last year we probably had over 100 kids failing at least one course, last year was very taxing on kids, but this year being in person has shown its benefit,” said Begando. 

As of now, there are 19 kids who have at least one F. Only three out of the 19 had multiple F’s, and 27 have D’s. 

“I just want to tip my cap to the teachers for pushing these kids the way that they are. There is still some remote learning going on for students who are quarantined. There are some amazing things going on in our classrooms right now. As I’m going through evaluations I’m seeing some really good stuff, so I just want to tip my cap to the teachers and really the students for putting forth the effort,” said Begando. 

As for tardies, there were 38 tardies last month, but Begando added it was the beginning of the school year, and students are still becoming acclimated with their schedule. Most of the tardis this year have been from kids getting into the building, whether it be in the morning or coming back from their lunch .

“I don’t know if it’s a COVID hangover from last year, just trying to get themselves in a routine,” said Begando. 

In the audit report, there was no short term debt (continued) which is what Superintendent Turner described as “great.” The debt capacity is almost 12 million dollars, and right now the school has an outstanding balance of $702,000. The school was graded on their financial status, and they received a four in each category, which is recognition status. 

“That’s always a good place to be,” said Turner. 

There was one findining, one that Turner explained the auditor was “not really concerned about.” Especially in the Education Fund, $87,000 more money was spent than the anticipated budget. Turner points to the switch in accounting programs to SDS. They were using STI before. 

“We suspect over $70,000 of that was from our activity funds,” said Turner. 

Item “B” of new business was an overnight/out-of-state trip request at the end of October for the National FFA Convention. Item “C” was Policy 7:20- Harassment of Students Prohibited. Item “D” talked about a renewal agreement between Bushue Human Resources for another three years. It is the same cost this year as last year, and each of the next two years it will increase $60 a year. Item “E” was next on the agenda, which covered the School Maintenance Project Grant Application. It is a $50,000 matching grant, so if the school spends that much, the state will match it, so they will get upwards of $100,000 for half the cost. The school is looking at replacing exterior doors. The four doors by the front entrance, as well as the south doors where most of the game traffic comes in. The doors on the north side of Assembly Hall will also be replaced. 

“They function, but not great,” said Turner. 

Two HBAC rooftop are also on the agenda to be replaced. The one above the art room is a standard classroom unit, while the one above the bandroom is a larger unit. The school is also looking to upgrade the hardware on all of the classroom doors. It will allow for a cleaner lock and key system. $10,000 should cover most of the remaining doors used. It is estimated it will be roughly $300 per door. Item “E”, the Esser III Plan was then discussed. The state is saying schools have to spend their money on learning loss, summer school programming, and after school programming. Turner explained some of things that are being discussed is the possibility of hiring a district social worker, which is listed under learning loss. 

“We will probably set that up to show how the social, mental, emotional health side of things have impacted the loss of learning, especially under certain populations that have been more affected by the pandemic,” said Turner. 

The hope is to have this in place by the start of the next school year. Turner also expressed the need for some new textbooks, something which all again be used from learning loss. Nashville is hoping to be able to offer summer school next summer, and possibly the summer after. They have two more years to spend the money. Transportation would also be provided. Summer school would enhance the chances of students still being able to have a study hall during normal school hours. Turner pushed for the board to approve to post for the after school tutor position. 

“We’d like to get that up and running as quickly as we can so we can utilize that for three years,” said Turner. 

The board decided to approve items a-g. The only item highlighted in the Superintendent’s Report was the Assembly Hall floor. Veterans Flooring, who came in and redid the volleyball standards three years ago recommended a full sanding followed by repainting the entire court.  

“We’re starting to have the same issue we did a few years ago, the joints and some of the long seams we have dirt pushing up through. In some places you can put your fingernail and start to peel and finish up off the floor,” said Turner. 

Turner is in the process of getting information from them, as well as communicating with Athletic Director Alicia Heggemeier as far as the design on the floor and different options. The floor was last painted in 2013. 

“There’s all kinds of new techniques out there,” said Turner. 

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