School Board Holds March Meeting

Planning ahead for the summer, the District #18 Board of Education last week began looking at summer projects to complete.
Prior to the start of the meeting, the building & grounds committee met to go over a list of possible projects. During the regular meeting, which all six board members attended, the board gave Superintendent Dan Polk the go-ahead to proceed. Some of the projects are small, like adding to water stations the ability to fill water bottles and installing a metal door on the elementary building, to more expensive projects like replacing the cinderella steps on the southwest corner of school property. Polk said he will attempt to contract locally to have work done, but cautioned that it may be necessary to contract with firms outside the Elgin community to get the necessary work done before the start of the 2015-2016 school year. More such projects will be presented at the next regular meeting to be held April 9.
One project to be undertaken once school is out is the replacement of the gym floor. The Anderson Ladd floor company, who received the bid for the project, informed the school district it will cost an additional $2,900 to paint the Wolfpack logo at the center of the court. Polk said that the cost would still be under the bid due to not having to pay to have the old floor removed as a private contractor has agreed to do the work for free (a savings of up to $6,500).
Updating the school board on an early retirement incentive made available to a number of staff members meeting the necessary criteria, Polk said no one so far has applied. That doesn’t mean staff members oppose the initiative. On the contrary, the superintendent said numerous staff members have spoken to him to express their appreciation for the school board to offer the package. “They’re aware it’s a year-to-year thing,” he said, meaning the package might not be offered next year. Teachers have til early April to apply for the package.
In other action:
Salary — The board offered, and Principal Wemhoff agreed to, a three percent increase in salary for the 2015-2016.
Technology — A total of more than $47,000 in technology purchases were approved.
Purchase — After some discussion, the board approved the purchase of a new suburban vehicle at a cost of nearly $39,000. As a result of the purchase, the district will sell a minibus.
Building — The board approved a bid of $8,575 from Beckman Lumber to construct a storage building.
Agreement — The board approved a new one-year bus contract with Pope John.