School Board Happenings

Regular Board Meeting: December 20, 2021

•  Student representative Hannah DeGrace updated the Board on events taking place throughout the District: Amy Belle PTA donated money for new playground equipment and students enjoyed a popcorn day; County Line held the PTA Snow Ball, spelling bee, and PJ day; Rockfield continues focusing on character development by spreading kind messages around the school and holding a KAPCO toy drive; MacArthur continues their focus on empathy and they held spirit days and G-Talks; Kennedy Middle School forensics, woodwind choir, Best Buddies, basketball, and wrestling are in action; Germantown High School celebrated the holiday season with Winter Wish Week’s hallway decorating, gift giving, and holiday music, and boys and girls basketball seasons are underway.

•  Superintendent Stousland led discussions on the Title Funding Report, reviewing critical program elements and guidelines. The two schools eligible this year for Title I funding are MacArthur (schoolwide) and Kennedy Middle School (targeted assistance). He led further discussions on District-wide Title II funding focused on literacy-writing training, teacher mentoring, and conferences for social workers, psychologists, and counselors.

•  Superintendent Stousland led discussions on the state report card, the District’s overall score, and report card details. Stousland led further discussions on an ACT data report. The Board had discussions regarding report cards scores, ACT testing and results, and DPI changes to scoring criteria.

•  Superintendent Stousland provided a discipline report for Kennedy Middle School and Germantown High School and led discussions describing the data presented, describing the difference between Students Referred and Offenses Referred. Soderberg asked that the report be broken down to show the levels of offenses. GHS administrators Marc Lehnerer, Joel Farren, and Jennifer Johannsen provided an overview of behavioral issues, pre- and post-shutdown expectations, consequences, and dealing with mental health issues.

•  Superintendent Stousland introduced PAC Coordinator Heather Pulkowski who updated the Board on the Performing Arts Center: hosting and ticketing capabilities, winter family movie nights, performances in 2022, youth summer camps, professional events, piano campaign and practice-a-thon, the PAC website, and walkup box office hours. Soderberg thanked Heather for not only meeting but exceeding expectations in operating the PAC.

•  Superintendent Stousland led discussions on Unik Moua and Emma Rehm, two Germantown High School students who have submitted requests to Principal Farren for early graduation. He congratulated them and wished them well.

•  Superintendent Stousland led discussions on the Return to School update and preparations for the unknowns of 2022—weather and COVID—highlighting the Virtual Learning Day Expectations that are outlined on the District website. Stousland recapped the COVID school and area transmission numbers.

•  The following citizens addressed the Board regarding County Line playground basketball hoops, ACP, CRT, masks, teacher workdays, DPI report card, transparency, and behavior: Sam Stocks, Avery O’Brien, James Cannestra-GEA representative, Scott Hefle, Alex Hardin, Amy Martin, Alyssa Pollow, Richard Biank, Sarah Larson.

•  Motion by Reinemann, second by Soderberg to approve the November 15, 2021, Board of Education meeting minutes. Motion carried.

•  Loth led discussions on the topics discussed at the December 20, 2021, Finance Committee meeting: November vouchers, 2020–2021 financial audit review presented by Wendi Unger, Partner of Baker Tilly; variance report; tax bills; Moody rating; ESSER funds; and the approval of donations for a scoreboard plaque. Soderberg thanked Altendorf for all she has accomplished regarding the budget.

•  Director of Human Resources Mike Nowak led discussions on the resignation of the Director of Teaching and Learning Brenda O’Brien. Motion by Pawlak, second by Soderberg to approve the resignation and thank her for her years of service. Approval of the posting and filling the vacancy. Motion carried.  Soderberg asked about the number of candidates and the timeline for filing the vacancy. Board members, parent and teacher representatives, and school and district office administrators will be on the interview committee.

•  Director of Human Resources Mike Nowak led discussions on the teacher contracts. Motion by Reinemann, second by Barney to approve the 1.0 FTE limited-term contract for Kelsey Bayles at $35,240. Motion carried.

•  Superintendent Stousland led discussions on the high school Dean of Students position. Motion by Soderberg, second by Loth to approve the hiring of a high school Dean of Students position, which will encompass three main areas: student discipline/behavior, ACP, and data/testing. Motion carried.

•  Superintendent Stousland led discussions on the following donations: $250 from Rosenthal Associates, Inc., $250 from Scott and Brittany Metcalf, $250 from WFA LLC Disbursement, and $250 from Weissman Automotive all for the high school bowling program. $250 from William and Susanne Gay, $8000 from the Germantown High School Environmental Club, and $3000 from the Germantown High School Student Council all for the high school greenhouse project. Motion by Barney, second by Reinemann to thank the donors for their generosity and approve the donations as presented. Motion carried.

•  Motion by Barney, second by Pawlak to enter into closed session.

A recording of the meeting can be viewed here.