The Kingsland School Board held a “work session” meeting on September 9, with some members participating via remote technology means, due to current social distancing guidelines. All board members were in attendance (Jackie Horsman, Tiffany Mundfrom, Noella Lund, Natasha Howard, Maranda Emig, and Kyle Rader), as well as Superintendent Jim Hecimovich, Principal Scott Klavetter, Athletic Director Mark Fitzpatrick, Becky Bicknese, and Amber Herbrand. During these “work sessions,” the board discusses issues, but generally does not take formal action on agenda items until the second meeting of each month.
When the board reviewed a number of suggested staff hirings, Jackie Horsman said, “I’m actually going to recommend taking John Fenske off the consent agenda item. And the board can discuss that… It’s our job to look out for what is the best for these programs, and for the students, and for the rest of our staff. And while some people can be very qualified for a job, and have a lot of experience, it doesn’t mean that they necessarily have the attitude that Kingsland is striving to have and to carry forward.” She added, “Personally, I need it to be off the (consent) agenda, because I need to vote on it as a separate issue.”
There was discussion about Fenske’s prior resignation from Kingsland’s football program, and Horsman stated that current board members are not given access to private information about employees prior to the board member’s term. But she added that Fenske’s resignation letter is a matter of public record, so it could be shared with the board. Superintendent Hecimovich indicated he would provide that to board members for their consideration. No action was taken at this time.
The board reviewed a written report submitted by Building and Grounds Director Jason Thompson. Hecimovich stated, “As you can see, Jason and his crew, they’ve been busy. The place looks great.” Thompson’s report summarized a number of infection control items that have been installed, including paper towel dispensers and hand sanitizer dispensers.
Hecimovich shared the report on food service which had been submitted by Judy Tart. Her report outlined some steps being taken to lessen the chances of spreading COVID-19, including plastic shielding in the serving line, face shields and masks for food service staff, and disposable sporks for use by all students. The report also stated, “In the event one of our food service staff get COVID-19 despite the above protections/processes, food service will need to shut down for a minimum of 14 days. Meals will need to be brought by students from home or catered in from outside source.”
Business Manager Amber Herbrand’s report showed the three main “funding pots” through which Kingsland is able to access funds to help with COVID-19 related costs. She also stated that the annual audit is 90% completed.
Principal Klavetter’s report included “One of the items on your agenda this month is a request for approval of a new, temporary teaching position. Mr. Hecimovich and I are hoping to hire a full-time substitute teacher for the fall to provide flexibility in the event we have any staff members needing to self-isolate.” Board members shared a consensus that this suggestion makes good sense this year. Hecimovich shared that Kingsland has been in close communication with the Fillmore County Public Health Department, to work on best practices as school reopens.
Becky Bicknese informed the board that, “The summer food service program, we completed our audit. For that, we only had one little ding, which was a simple fix, and that’s already been taken care of and filed with the state, so we’re good to go. The food service program has been extended, until December 31 or until the money runs out. So what that means is, when the money runs out, they’ll let us know, and we’ll have to switch back to the normal food service program that usually happens during the school year.”
The need for an art teacher was discussed, and Hecimovich encouraged anyone with art experience to come forward. He said he’s had no luck finding applicants, even though the position is posted on “Teachers On Call.” The Kingsland Board’s next meeting will be a regular meeting on September 21, at 6 p.m.