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District Update 3-22-10

by Bill Heimann

March 21, 2010

District Update includes:

  1. High School Gym Floor Update
  2. High School Graduation Plans
  3. March 17 Special Board of Education Meeting Summary
  4. Special Board of Education Meetings Scheduled

On March 19th I learned more information about the ongoing investigation into the “gym floor mystery” at the high school. Additional water samples were taken from under the HS east gym. We drilled a hole in the HS commons area and found similar moisture levels as in the gym, so a water sample was taken from there also. We drilled a hole outside the gym (south side) and hit water at approximately 15 feet – conducted a water test and monitored levels in the hole the past few weeks. Supply line pressure tests were completed inside the high school last week.

The results of the water tests show that the water under the gym floor and the commons area is tap water! The exhaustive search inside the high school for the source of a leak did not show conclusive evidence of an internal leak. What does this mean? We will expand the search to the exterior of the building. This will take more time (and expense), but we have several options to consider.

Unfortunately, High School Graduation for the Class of 2010 will be relocated. Mr. Ricenbaw has been working on alternative locations, and has been examining all potential options. There are many factors to consider, we appreciate the continued patience – and we recognize that it is time to start sending out invitations to family and friends; a decision will be made at by April 1st (no fooling).

The Board of Education held a special meeting on March 17th. The Board took action to accept the resignations of veteran teachers, three of them will conclude their careers at Eagle Elementary. Mrs. Karen Whitenack, 5th grade; Mrs. Janet Ronhovde, 2nd grade; Mrs. Rita Neddenriep, Media Specialist. Mrs. Murleen Bellinger, High School Business teacher, submitted her resignation effective in May 2011. These teachers have many years of experience in District 145, and have impacted countless students. They have truly dedicated their lives to helping students be successful, and we recognize and thank them for their accomplishments.

The Board also accepted the resignation from Activities Director, Mr. Jack Guggenmos. During his tenure at District 145, Mr. Guggenmos has provided leadership to create an Activities Program that is recognized as one of the best. It is fitting that he was selected by his peers as Nebraska’s Activity Director of the Year.

At the March 17th meeting, the Board heard about future needs in the district from the administrative team. The Board also received information about the budget (click here), and the future financial outlook for the district.

The Board has scheduled a Special Meeting on Thursday, March 25th in the High School Media Center (6:30pm) to receive feedback of possible changes to personnel or programs. All aspects of the district budget are under consideration as we face financial challenges. At this meeting, I will present information, and an Open Forum will be conducted to allow staff/patrons a chance to give feedback to the Board of Education. No action will be taken March 25th. On March 30th, a Special Board meeting is scheduled (6:30pm; HS Media Center) to consider possible actions regarding proposed budget reductions.

When we have limited resources, we have to make choices and prioritize. School districts around the state face budget challenges, as demonstrated in an article published in the March 21st edition of the Omaha World Herald.

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