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District to discuss boundary changes PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 17 March 2018 09:03

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ELLY GRIMM
• Leader & Times



Along with taking action on some items from the last meeting (including a tuition assistance program and a request for additional positions), the USD 480 school board will be tackling several new items during its next meeting this evening beginning at 6:30. 

New business will begin with discussion on proposed boundary changes. This has been the subject of several discussions and conversations with USD 480 staff and the Liberal community and will be an information item this evening. After the information is presented during this evening’s meeting, the next step will be a community forum from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 29 at the Rock Island Depot, with the tentative date for official board approval being April 10. 

Also looking for approval will be the revised Classified Staff wage scale. 

“District administration has revised the Classified wage scale and is submitting to the board of education for review,” the agenda information noted. “Hourly rates for each department tier will be added at a later date and submitted to the board of education for discussion and approval.  An older Classified wage scale is also attached for comparison.”

Another item that has been on the board members’ minds for a long time for student safety is storm shelters, which will also be up for discussion this evening. 

“The board has indicated providing storm shelters at Cottonwood Elementary School, Sunflower Elementary School, Bright Start Early Learning Center, and Liberal High School is a priority,” the agenda information noted. “In an effort to find a cost-effective and reliable solution, we are presenting Shelter in Place safe rooms as a consideration.  The classroom shelters, made of steel, have been engineered to provide complete protection against EF-5 tornadoes, meeting or exceeding FEMA strength standards. Because the safe rooms have excellent lighting, carpet, and padded benches, teachers use them on a daily basis as a quiet reading area or tutoring space.  So the space occupied by the safe room isn’t ‘lost’ space.  The shelters can be designed to fit any classroom or common area. Typically, shelter designs are 1 sq. foot per child (elementary) 1.5 sq. foot per child (middle school), 2 sq. feet per child (high school).  The current cost for the shelters is $682/sq. ft.”

There will also be a few items up for renewal at the meeting this evening, with the first of these items being the renewal of Learning A-Z. 

“The renewal for Learning A to Z (previously Reading A to Z) will be $23,753.25 for one year,” the agenda information noted. “This resource is utilized by K-5 teachers, and there are many testimonials attached.”

Also looking for renewal will be gym floors. 

“The first bid is for Cottonwood Elementary and this will sand and refinish the gym floor,” the agenda information noted. “The following bids were received: Kansas Gym Floors – $13,500; Von Lintel – $15,900; and 4 State Maintenance – no Bid, could not fit in their schedule. The second bid is to refinish all the other gym floors in USD 480: Kansas Gym Floors – $21,158; Von Lintel – $24,540; and 4 State Maintenance – $17,429.56. USD 480 recommends using Kansas Gym Floors in the amount of $13,500 to sand and refinish the Cottonwood gym and use 4 State Maintenance in the amount of $17,429.56 to refinish the remaining gym floors.”

There will also be several purchases looking for approval from the board this evening, including a new copier, a donation to cover the cost of 20 Sound field systems for the elementary schools, and four aerial platform lifts. Another major item looking for approval will be the burial of overhead power lines. 

“USD 480 has worked with Southern Pioneer, B&B Electric and Zito Cable to come up with the following estimate for moving the overhead electrical lines that run from Western Avenue across the north parking lot at LHS all the way to the termination point, just south of the main athletic field. The estimate to do the work is $110,000 as follows: 1. Southern Pioneer Electric – bore and install underground conduit, provide new conductors to new transformer pad, with the district to purchase a new transformer from Southern Pioneer for $6,974.00. With the removal of the overhead lines and old poles, the cost of this work, which includes the cost of the transformer, is $70,500. We received this estimate from SPE March 15, 2017. A few weeks ago, they confirmed that price was still good. SPE has confirmed they can complete the work in five months. Therefore, if we gave them approval in March 2018, they would be finished mid-Aug. 2018, a week or two before school starts; 2. B&B Electric – they would install a concrete transformer pad and do ‘Secondary’ connections from the new transformer to the existing electrical meters. Their budget estimate is $16,000, which was received March 13, 2018; 3. Zito Cable — they have two lines on the power poles, including one fiber optic cable and a ‘cable TV’ cable. Per conversations with SWKO, the fiber line will go away, because of alternate routing and cross connects from SWKO to Zito. Zito is ok with this arrangement. Their existing fiber will then be scrapped. We will have to provide a 1.25” conduit for the cable TV. The installed cost of the conduit including boring will be $8,500. Pending their estimate, we are including an allowance of $5,000 for their work; and 4. SWKO – we’re putting in an allowance of $2,500 to remove the fiber optic cable.”

Among the final items for the board to discuss will be sending USD 480 staff members to the ISTE Technical Conference in Chicago and this year’s AVID Summer Institute in Dallas.

 

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The High Plains Daily Leader and Southwest Daily Times are published Sunday through Friday and reaches homes throughout the Liberal, Kansas retail trade zone. The Leader & Times is the official newspaper of Seward County, USD No. 480, USD No. 483 and the cities of Liberal and Kismet.  The Leader & Times is a member of the Liberal Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Press Association and the Associated Press.

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