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ELC Board OKs homework policy on trial basis

By Staff | Mar 12, 2008

After several months of delays due to weather and scheduling, the Estherville Lincoln Central Community School District Board of Education Monday approved “version II” of a middle-school homework policy.

“This is version number two of the homework policy,” said Middle-School Principal Mike Peterson, noting that the first version was in place a short time and suspended due to changes.

Peterson said the biggest policy change was that previously if a student did not complete work, he or she would fail the class. Now if homework is not done, the student will receive a zero for a homework assignment.

Another issue was transportation in the event that a student has to stay after school to complete homework.

“We are trying to do this collaboratively with parents,” Peterson said. He said every attempt will be made to contact parents personally. If a student cannot stay after school, alternate arrangements will be made.

Superintendent Dick Magnuson said the middle school would like to begin the policy March 17. Since it would involve changes to the middle-school handbook, the board would have to approve the changes, Magnuson said.

Rick Rosburg, representing the District Improvement Committee, said he was concerned that the committee was not informed of the recommended changes. As a result, the changes “have circumvented parental input”.

Superintendent Dick Magnuson suggested that the new policy be given a trial period for one quarter.

The board approved starting the new policy March 17 and reviewing it in June.

In other business coming before the board:

n Jo Shonkwiler addressed the board on days missed by school aides. “We can’t afford to work here anymore,” Shonkwiler said. “It’s really hard to make ends meet.”

n The board approved a swimming agreement with Algona.

n A budget hearing was set for 5:10 p.m. April 14.

n The board approved revising the current 2007-08 school calendar to accommodate construction at Demoney Elementary. The last day of school will be this May 23 and the 2008-09 school calendar will be extended accordingly.

n Magnuson said he will return with a proposal for a contract for custodial services from the FBG Service Company of Omaha, Neb.