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Stucker updates Orrick school board on legislative issues

The Orrick Board of Education met in regular session Monday evening, Feb. 23, with funding leading the discussions.
Superintendent Marcus Stucker had recently attended the MSBA Legislative Forum.
The economy was one of the topics discussed and its relation to the school districts throughout the state. Stucker stated that although the attitude toward education is positive, legislators are not passing a lot of bills that deal with funding. Discussions dealt with vouchers and open enrollment. Gov. Jay Nixon is in full support of educators and he does not want to take a step backward. His goal is to have education without a big debt. Gov. Nixon’s goal is to have students continuing on into higher education without having the burden of high debt on their shoulders. Stucker also stated they are not certain how the stimulus package will impact education. He said it is probably only a one or two year program and probably won’t be in place for over two or three years. At the local level this translates, for example, into not giving teachers a big raise based on this stimulus package, as this money would most likely not be available after two years. Stucker stated that you cannot give teachers a raise and then take it back after a year or two. The 2009-2010 budget has not been set. Discussions statewide in regard to a four-day school week are ongoing and this would cut the transportation costs by one-fifth. Currently, school districts don’t pay federal tax on fuel but do pay Missouri tax on fuel.
Stucker stated that financially the district balance is almost equal to what it was at this time last year. Financially, the district is in good shape and if all goes well there will be a balanced budget.
In other business:
The board recognized high school history teacher Sandra Pendleton and two of her American History students, both juniors, Preston Karnes and Taylor Ruhnke.
The assignment for the class had been a non-writing project to help the students appreciate history. Preston brought the lye soap he had made proving the point the soap was excellent for the treatment of poison ivy. Taylor brought what many thought was a beautiful hand quilt that she had made. Pendleton explained that some students had made their quilts into pillows. Chad McAdams had crafted a log cabin.
Stucker also announced that Windsor has been accepted in the I-70 Conference for the 2009-2010 school year. He will also be going to Warrensburg on March 19 to accept the “Distinction in Performance” award for the Orrick School District.
The board accepted the resignation of Lindsey McMullin as Director of the CAT CLUB, an elementary after school latch key program, and hired Debbie Moore to replace McMullin.
The Library Media Report was given to the board. Praise was given to Jana Bunch, librarian, (not present) for a job well done in regard to the school library program and the outstanding efforts made to keep up to date books and media for both students and teachers alike.
Contracts were offered to both High School Principal Brock Dover and Elementary Principal Keri Cavanah. Board President Karla Waters, speaking on behalf of the entire board, offered the board’s thanks for jobs well done and voiced the board’s appreciation for having administrators of their quality in the Orrick School District. It was also announced that Keri Cavanah would be the District’s Director of Curriculum Instruction kindergarten through 12th grade for the 2009-2010 school year. The board also approved the calendar revision to make up snow days missed earlier in the year.
Elementary Principal Keri Cavanah’s report said that on Monday, March 2, there is to be a PAW PRIDE assembly for the elementary students. Various students will receive Trading Cards with selected upper level high school students, that are involved in academic clubs and sports, that have made the personal commitment to be positive role models for elementary students by choosing not to be involved with alcohol or drugs. The MAP celebration will be held on April 17 with hot dogs, hamburgers, and chips as part of the menu. School will be dismissed at 1 p.m.
Summer School will be held from June 1 through June12 during the hours of 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
High School Principal Brock Dover said that junior high attendance for the month was 93.43 percent and high school attendance was 93.05 percent.
Students of the month for February were: High School: Amanda Rodenberg and Junior High: Caitlyn Sumpter. Amanda Rodenberg and Alyssa Sands made the All-State Academic Volleyball Team. This is based on GPA (Grade Point Average) and playing percentages.
The Freshmen fundraiser of Valentine balloon sales made approximately $512. On Feb. 20, the Spanish class went on a field trip to Kansas City to an authentic Cuban restaurant called “Rice and Beans.” Mr. Thomas accompanied the students. After lunch they went to Southwest Boulevard to various shops and grocery stores. While there, they were required to speak Spanish to the clerks and shopkeepers and in the restaurant as well.
The National Junior Honor Society service project will be March 14. Students will feed the homeless at Grand Avenue Temple. MAP testing for grades 7 through 8 will be administered on April 6-8, and 14-16. Terranova testing for 9th graders will be administered April 6-8, and 14. End of course testing for high school will be administered May 1 and May 4-8. April 19-20 will be the spring production of the musical “Grease.” April 25 is Prom. Graduation will be 2 p.m., May 17.
The next meeting of the Orrick Board of Education will be Monday, March 16, at 7:30 p.m., in the high school library.
Present at the meeting was Superintendent Marcus Stucker, Board Secretary Sandra McAfee, Elementary Principal Keri Cavanah, High School Principal Brock Dover, Board members: Karla Waters, President, Marvin Griffin, Tim Twyman, Paul Werle, Art Endsley, and Karen McGlothlin. Member Roger Thomas was not in attendance.

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