ELC board, staff wrapping up the school year

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With the school year winding down, the Estherville Lincoln Central School Board took action on several end-of-year items and also approved several annual agreements in preparation for the 2021-21 school year. The board also received final reports from administrators.

“It is almost impossible to believe that we are less than a week away from the end of the school year,” said ELC Middle School Principal Brad Nelson, who just completed his first year with the school district. “Again, kudos to our staff and students for making this year possible.”

Nelson said he and his staff are anxiously awaiting the results of the Iowa Assessments tests.

He added that the middle school still is working on filling openings for a fifth grade science teacher and an eighth grade science teacher.

ELC High School Principal Brad Leonard noted there is also an open science position at that level.

Both principals noted that ELC is checking in all Chromebooks at the end of this year to give the technology department a chance to make sure all are ready for school in the fall.

ELC Elementary Principal Connie Humble noted that instead of a spring concert, each class is reviewing some of their favorite things they’ve learned throughout the school year. A video is being made for each grade that will be shared from classroom teachers on the Seesaw app.

In other business, ELC Superintendent Tara Paul noted that insurance costs are increasing for the first time since 2012.

“We believe we have had a really good run of keeping our health insurance costs in check and working with our agent to keep costs manageable, however this year we are recommending a change to insurance rates,” she said. “The recommendation does not fully balance the budget we believe we will need to balance the projected claims with incoming funds, however it does spend down our reserve to the recommended level of funding, and gives us time to look at our insurance plan with our agent to see where we can make other adjustments to save on insurance costs into the future.”

The board approved Paul’s recommendation for a health insurance premium increase of 15 percent for 2021-22.

The board approved an annual agreement with Woodyard Youth Services (formerly Forest Ridge). It allows students at Forest Ridge to receive an ELC diploma if they meet set requirements. It also sets requirements to allow ELC to be a flow throw for Forest Ridge to receive state funding for Iowa students.

The board also approved school fees for the 2021-22 school year, which did not change from the current school year.

The board also approved support staff and administrative salaries for the coming year. The total package increase is 3.09 percent, which includes the 15 percent increase in insurance premiums.

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