By JESSICA CRAWFORD
• Daily Leader
A USD No. 480 Board of Education meeting lasting in excess of two hours still did not end with the final approval of Deputy Superintendent Lance Stout as superintendent of the district following the retirement of Vernon Welch in May. Although, Stout’s hiring is still expected to be voted on by the board in the near future.
Board president Dan Diepenbrock confirmed earlier today that Stout was still being sought after for the position.
“We just didn’t have the contract finished because of other things going on,” Diepenbrock said. “I would be surprised if it wasn’t approved at the next board meeting. Nothing has changed.”
Superintendent Vernon Welch announced a proposal from Liberal High School Keith Adams regarding the location of commencement exercises. Although the current senior class will conduct services in the Big House, the current junior class will be permitted to use the newly remodeled Redskin Field.
“After visiting with the elected officers of the class of 2011 and collecting from various other sources, I hereby submit a formal proposal to have commencement ceremonies at Redskin Field beginning with the current junior class, Saturday, May 21, 2011, at 10:30 a.m. and continuing annually hereafter,” Adams noted in a letter to Welch. “Seating will be on a first come, first serve basis with gates opened at 9 a.m.
“A contingent plan in case of inclement weather, or other unforeseen circumstances will be to issue an allotted number of tickets to seniors and move the ceremonies inside to the main gymnasium where those with tickets may attend,” he continued. “In order to complete the indoor set up, if required, a decision will have to be made by the building principal with the approval of the superintendent by 9 a.m. the day of the ceremony. Once the decision is made, it will not be reversed even if conditions become favorable after 9 a.m. In the event the ceremony is moved indoors, it will be announced on all local radio stations.”
Adams added in his letter graduates and authorized personnel will only be allowed behind the fenced area in order to preserve the track and turf. He added no high heels will be allowed on the turf.
Adams gave a cost estimate for the ceremony to be conducted at Redskin Field in 2011 and continuing thereafter.
“The estimated cost of the initial outdoor graduation ceremony is $5,000 to $7,000,” he noted. “The majority of this expense is for the purpose of 2x4s and plywood to cover the turf and track surfaces. There will be some light construction involved and labor for set up/tear down. Additional costs for added security for the larger venue will also increase the expense.”