Shelby County R-IV School Board Discusses COVID-19 Options

September 15, 2020

By Thad Requet

Avoiding COVID-19 and staying in the classrooms were a big topic at the Shelby County R-IV School Boad meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 9, at South Shelby.

District COVID

Re-Entry Plan

Clawson wants to continue to go as long as they can. If they have to scale back to staggering students to come on certain days they will do this. He talked about a mixing process, where students would be in the school on certain days and virtual days at certain times. Specifically they talked about attending Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and keeping Wednesday as a virtual day. Maddex said it’s a way to meet with kids but also not having as much exposure. Clawson said the district has been fortunate so far, and warned that things could change, and they have to be ready.

Board members had concerns about having kids at home getting a virtual education but still attending extra-curricular activities in person at the same time. Board members Kevin Glover and Tina Dovin said they felt if kids can compete in sports, they can attend school.

Clawson said the challenge they are facing if it comes to kids at home will be getting everyone connected. He said they will make every effort they can to reach every kid, no matter what that consists of. Board member Jim Foster asked what will happen when they allow when they move from football to basketball. Clawson said honestly they are getting by because football is outdoors. He feels it is going to be very hard to have indoor activities the way things are now.

Foster said he is hearing from patrons that being in the classroom is the top priority. As for inside sports, he doesn’t have an answer right now. He said a packed house is the biggest concern right now.

Elementary Building

Update

Michael Purol updated the board on the ongoing progress on the Elementary building. He said getting the kitchen up and going was the big thing. He said it’s in service. Purol said that Monday they will be in to test the balance of the air-conditioner.

He talked about a change order for outlets and counter tops that were added.

Purol noted that they are starting the flooring in the gym. Once it is installed they will do the striping. He said the sub-contractor estimated two weeks from once they get started. Purol also noted that there are a few broken windows that need to be replaced. He said they were broken when they were installed.

The board approved a change order for $6,008.

Scott Gough asked Clawson if he was comfortable with the retainage of $468,151.55. It is to be paid after the district sign’s off on the punch list. Gough wanted to make sure work will continue even if this is all that is left to pay. Clawson said he’s confident they will finish the job.

Gough asked what would happen if they didn’t approve this month’s payment. Clawson said the work has been done that they are paying. The board approved a payment for $543,325.90.

Principals Reports

South Shelby Elementary Principal Katie Stueve reported that there are 294 students enrolled in the elementary.

Progress is continuing in the gym. She said that the floor is underway and acoustical panels are going up.

She mentioned several upcoming dates that will take place in September and October.

South Shelby Middle School Principal Curt Bowen reported enrollment numbers.

A total of 96 percent of the students attended the open house. He said that was a great turnout.

They did not have the sixth grade orientation this year like in the past.

As far as transportation, Bowen reported that he asked each bus driver to get a count of how many elementary, middle school and high school kids they had currently riding. He noted that he wanted an average of how many were riding. He said he didn’t want to jump the gun on starting up a new bus route. He waited until the numbers stabilized. He said that now he thinks they need to add an additional route. He’s projecting they will have plenty of room for the kids. Bowen said they have been disinfecting the busses twice a day.

He noted that the middle school has had two cancellations in sports so far. Bowen said there are a lot of buses going right now.

High School Principal Tim Maddex reported that Edgenuity is the new language program. It has four students involved. Maddex said it is a great program.

Maddex talked about Homecoming. He said he talked to STUCO officers and they asked if they could temp check the kids before they come in. As of right now, the dance will be for South Shelby kids only.

Maddex said he has been working with Megan Mudd with preparations for a possible webcam or Google Classroom lessons in case they would be necessary.

Vo-Tech is going to a hybrid model. South Shelby students will attend on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and the next week Tuesday and Thursday and so on. That has changed since Macon has shut down in-person schooling since the meeting.

Clawson noted that Glenn Eagan talked to him about COVID money available. He said there was like $600,000 available. Clawson requested $54,350 for Chromebooks, which would be around a third of the students. He is waiting to hear back from the Commission.

Superintendent’s

Report

Clawson talked more about displaying the past class composite pictures electronically. Clawson talked about putting one outside the high school gym because it is a high traffic area. There was talk about getting one for the elementary school as well, but he recommended just getting one. The board gave its blessing to proceed with the project.

Clawson noted that they applied for a waiver for lunches from September on. They will be able to reimburse kids for their lunches.

He also noted that they added quite a bit of gravel in the back parking lot.

Request for Proposal for Elementary Storage

Clawson said this would be a building that would house desks, chairs, filing cabinets that are full of records. They have extra books for years they need to add a third class for a grade. They also have extra ceiling tile, extra floor tile and cleaning products. He will get proposals that will provide costs for insulation for the roofs and walls separately. He said he could keep modifying the plans or table it, whatever the board wants to do. Gough said he thinks they need to move on this because they won’t have the old elementary buildings in Clarence and Shelbina for storage forever. Clawson will get a price for the building, a price for insulation and a price for water and heat. Then they can decide what they want to do.

Other News

In other news the board:

*approved the consent items.

*approved the agenda.

*approved the bills as presented.

*heard instructional climate reports from each building.

*approved MEC policy updates as presented.

*approved a Missouri Ethics Commission Resolution as presented.

*approved a certification statement as presented.