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North Union Board operational sharing incentives

May 2, 2014
By Michael Tidemann - Staff Writer , Estherville News

For several years now, Armstrong-Ringsted School District has received supplemental weighting - or additional state aid - by sharing staff. Monday night, the North Union Board of Education heard how operation sharing will continue to help the district.

According to Superintendent Matt Berninghaus, incentives approved by the Iowa Legislature this year will bring North Union $78,000 in supplemental weighting - enough to reduce the levy in both districts by 5 cents from published estimates.

Berninghaus said state sharing incentive equivalents could potentially apply to the following positions:

n Superintendent - eight students.

n Business manager, human resources director, transportation director and maintenance director - five students each.

n Curriculum director and counselor - three students each.

However, Berninghaus said the incentives would allow for a maximum equivalent of 21 students, or $130,000 in incentives a year for $650,000 over five years. That would not include salary savings, he said. He told the board he hoped to meet with North Kossuth Superintendent Mike Landstrum and have more agreements worked out by mid-May.

The board also approved $284,000 in summer projects for the Armstrong building. They include $20,000 for reconditioning the baseball field just east of the north parking lot in Armstrong, $14,000 for parking lot repairs and $250,000 to redo the south entrance.

Maintenance director Tom Mark noted deteriorating steps by the gym and showed a schematic of a vestibule concept. Berninghaus said $961,893.41 would remain in the building fund after the projects.

Proposed projects at Sentral - yet to be approved by the Sentral Board of Education - include rooftop HVAC at $20,000 and a sound system for $10,000 for $30,000 total. Berninghaus recommended that other Sentral projects - including carpet in four rooms and the office for $15,476.76, lights in the art room for $8,890.20 and non-touch toilets and sinks for $8,000 - wait until the Sentral Board of Education acts on the other items to determine the remaining balance.

The board approved the 2014-15 school calendar which calls for an Aug. 20 start with the last day May 18.

The board also approved a classified staff position structure and hiring Kaitlyn Bonzer as ag/science instructor. Berninghaus said the district will save $43,000 by combining both the ag and science duties into one position.

Also approved was a $5,000 stipend for Nate Hanson as sports manager. The board also approved the resignation of Brandy Beggerly from her elementary contract.

Activities Director Robert Zotz reviewed activities over the past two months. Highlights included the FFA state convention April 27-29, speech competition, band and vocal competitions, last weekend's prom, the Red Rock and conference art shows, the Every 15 Minutes program, the combined Jim Godfredsen and Tom Elliott track meet, Booster Club banquet and the NIC Conference North Union will join 2014-15 with addition of the Corn Bowl Conference into a superconference with two divisions 2015-16.

The board also went into exempt session for negotiations.



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