The January 18, 2018, regular meeting of the Rock Port R-II School Board of Education began when President Rich Dewhirst called the regular meeting to order at 7:15 p.m.  Other members present were Afton Schomburg, Ken Miller, Jeremy Davis, Harold Lawrence, and Clay Vogler.  Member Dan Lucas was absent.  Also present were Elementary Principal Steve Waigand, High School Principal Ethan Sickels, Superintendent Craig Walker, Board Secretary Debbie Young, Amy Skillen, Jennifer Geib, Crystal Goins, Shawn Shineman, Stacy Walker, Jill Gilson, Tawni Ellis, Shauna Farmer, and Debbie Farr with Lunchtime Solutions.
The agenda was amended to include finance committee reports and board policy as item B. under executive session and then the agenda was adopted as amended.  The minutes of the regular meeting of December 14, 2017 were approved.  Mr. Walker reviewed the financial information for the month ending December 2017.  The transfer of funds, the December final check register, the January check register to date, and the activity account checks were approved.  Under communications Mr. Walker read a thank you from Donnie and Stephanie Parsons.  Mr. Walker then opened the sealed bids for contracted food service.  Bids were received from Lunchtime Solutions and OPAA.  Board members Rich Dewhirst, Dan Lucas, and Afton Schomburg will review the bids with Mr. Walker and report back to the board with a recommendation.  During scheduled audience Shawn Shineman addressed the board regarding public access to the weight room and the calendar committee presented the first draft of the 2018-2019 school calendar with final approval to be given following the calendar hearing in February.
The elementary principal’s report opened with Mrs. Ellis sharing information regarding the Watch Dogs program, Backpack Buddies, and the elementary guidance program.  Mrs. Gilson reported on 4th grade and shared information on math and language arts.  Mr. Waigand reported December attendance was 97.21% (180 students, two new students).  Fifth grade received the Attendance Championship Award for 98.55%.  December Blue Jays of the Week were recognized for showing compassion.  Special thanks to Pastor Shimmel and Grace Church for the pizza party on January 9.  January’s character trait is tolerance.  Our Elementary PTO met on January 9.  Blue Jay Shop was a big hit over the Christmas season.  Plans are gearing up for Valentine’s shirts and the Book Fair for 3rd quarter.  Elementary STUCO is taking a more active role in the Morning Motivation meetings on Mondays.  STUCO is also keeping the display case in the main elementary hallway updated with quarterly Accelerated Reader Champions (by points) in each class and monthly attendance by each grade level.  We have had multiple WATCH DOGS in the first couple weeks of January.  They have shared many positive comments about our teachers and the job they do!  Mrs. Ellis will be posting some of these comments on our “Shout-Out” board in the workroom.  Students enjoyed watching the movie “Trolls” on the big screen in the south gym on December 20.  The Reading Incentive Committee had popcorn and mini-waters for all elementary students.  Students meeting their AR Reading Goals for first and second quarters were placed in a drawing for some special grade level prizes.  It was a great way to lead into Christmas break.
Our 2nd quarter STEM Showcase was held on December 18.  Nearly 200 parents and family members were in attendance for the event.  Kindergarten through 4th grade classrooms had student projects on display from their PLTW modules and the 6th grade classroom shared the progress and discoveries of their new Medical Detectives unit.  Third through sixth grade and Title Math classrooms also had displays of our new Math Expressions program and shared some different strategies that students have learned throughout the first semester.  The PK-3 Music Program was held on December 11.  The north gym was packed for the evening performance.  Staff professional development:  new teachers and mentors met after school on January 10; I attended a Parents as Teachers Model Implementation Training in St. Louis on December 14 and 15 to comply with a new state requirement for PAT Coordinators; January 3rd was a Professional Development in-service day at school; 3rd grade teachers worked on planning upcoming units with Math Expressions on December 15.
The high school principal’s report opened with Mrs. Farmer sharing information regarding the high school guidance program.  Mr. Sickels reviewed several upcoming dates and activities.  December attendance for the JH and HS was 95.89%, and enrollment for grades 7-12 is 154. We have our Spelling Bee for the District coming up on January 23 in the Elementary Library, and from those winners we will send students to the Atchison County Spelling Bee on February 8 at 4 p.m. in Tarkio.  HS Scholar Bowl team started practice and has 18 out; we will have a tournament where we can take the varsity and two JV teams, but mainly it will be varsity during the 275 season which begins on February 17 at North Andrew.  We are still working on our math textbooks and curriculum choices at the HS level, and hopefully will have something for you in the near future.  Staff reports were received from:  Ms. Heitman, Mrs. Miller, and Mr. Moore.
Mr. Walker reviewed the monthly evaluation report on the district guidance program and Mrs. Farmer and Mrs. Ellis were available to answer any questions.  He also noted the 0000 series board policies and regulations are to be reviewed by the board with any concerns or possible changes brought to his attention.  Mr. Walker stated that board filing for the April election closed on January 16.  The two incumbents, Rich Dewhirst and Harold Lawrence, are the only filers for the two openings therefore the district won’t need to hold an election.  Mr. Walker has been working with the Mayor, Chris Chamberlain, and the Board of Aldermen to recognize the people who serve our community.  At the basketball game on January 16th time was taken to thank emergency service providers and first responders.  Mr. Walker reported on the employee wellness screening and incentives offered through our group medical insurer, and he also reported on the grant writing workshop he recently attended in Jefferson City.  Copies of the Monsanto Grant/Curnutt Trust expenditures for PLTW, and the student food service survey were distributed.  Mr. Walker also reviewed the CSIP School Culture Survey.
Afton Schomburg reported on the formation of the FFA alumni organization, and board members discussed public access to school facilities at which time Clay Vogler shared a statement by the summer weight program instructor Phil Vogler.
The board proceeded to address several items of new business.  Action was taken to approve the time and date for the 2018 graduation ceremony as Sunday, May 13, 2018, at 1:30 p.m.  Board policy and regulation updates received from Missouri Consultants for Education were reviewed and will be on the February agenda for consideration.  Action was taken to accept the resignation of Hope Vette due to retirement effective at the end of the 2017-2018 school year.  The board then entered executive session for personnel matters.  Upon returning to open session the board noted that the minutes of the executive sessions of August 15, 2017, October 27, 2017, and November 14, 2017, were approved.  An executive session for the purpose of personnel matters including the superintendent’s evaluation was scheduled for Thursday, February 1, 2018, at 6 p.m.  The meeting was then adjourned.