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Houston School Board works on 2015 budget

By Angie Rodenburg

Fri, Jun 6th, 2014
Posted in All Education

The Houston School Board held a meeting on June 3. At the meeting the board continued discussion from the last meeting about the FY15 Proposed Budget and Gwen Rostad was present to answer any questions the board had. The board must approve a final budget by June 30, 2014. Gwen Rostad also informed the board of a need for the price of school lunches to be increased by $0.10, according to the Paid Lunch Equity calculation that is done every year. This would raise the cost of paid lunches to $2.20 for K-6 and $2.45 for 7-12. The board will vote on the increase at the next board meeting.

Krin Abraham presented the board with the Teacher Development and Evaluation Plan that was crafted by administrative, union, and Q Comp representatives as well as herself. Abraham also presented the District Staff Development Plan including staff development goals. Superintendent Rick presented the Fundraising Report for the past school year.

Principal Lundberg shared with the board a need to change next year’s graduation date from Friday, May 29 to Friday, June 5, 2015. Lundberg shared several reasons for the date change. The rationale is that it would be consistent with what Houston is doing this school year and it is after the last day of school for all students and staff. Lastly, it would give the seniors 3.5 fewer days of school rather than 7.5. The change in graduation date will be voted on at the next school board meeting. Justin Treptow was also in attendance and informed the board of the date that was chosen for next year’s MNVA graduation. MNVA’s graduation is set to be Sunday, June 7 at the Prom Center in Oakdale, Minn. The board will vote on the MNVA graduation date at the next board meeting as well.

At the meeting the board also took time to review the superintendent contract for Krin Abraham. A few changes were made to the draft and further revisions are being looked into. While Abraham has no concrete start date since she does not currently have her superintendent licensure, she does have a tentative start date of August 1. By then Abraham’s licensure should be secured.

The board approved several items at the meeting, including the interactive Science curriculum for the elementary school and the purchase of 85 computers. The board also approved the purchase of some necessary machine guarding items that are needed in order to be OSHA compliant. The board also approved demolition to begin on the high school boys and girls shower room project. The existing shower rooms are not handicapped accessible. This renovation will replace showers and provide handicapped accessibility.

The board also made a resolution establishing dates for filing affidavits of candidacy to the Houston School Board. Those interested in candidating for a position on the school board must file an affidavit in the office of the school district clerk between the dates of July 29 and August 12, 2014 by 5 p.m. There is a $2 filing fee. The general election will be held on Tuesday, November 3, 2014. At the election four members will be elected to the school board for a term of four years. Board members Tom Stilin, Gary Wilson, Ron Evenson, and Joe Krage will have completed their four year terms and are up for re-election if they so choose to candidate once again. Those elected will begin their four year term in January 2015.

The next school board meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, June 17 at the Houston High School Library at 6 p.m.

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