Board hears about future calendars

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Director of Elementary Education Rainey Briggs and Director of Secondary Education Laura Love reviewed drafts of the 2019-20 and 2020-21 school calendars at the Board of Education regular meeting on Monday, Nov. 5.

Love noted the biggest change is the District plans to add another professional development day for staff. She said a common theme from staff at listening sessions with the Board has been more time for professional development. Assistant Superintendent Sherri Cyra noted even with one more day where students aren't in school, the District has approximately 37.5 hours to work with in case inclement weather results in days off.

The Board asked if five PD days were enough. Love said other proposals were considered by the members of the Multi-Tiered Systems of Support, including one that included 45 days of school followed by 15 days off, but the group felt those changes might be too tough on District families.

There are two versions of the 2019-20 and 2020-21 calendars. One version for each year includes a two-week winter break, while the other offers a shorter break. The final day of school will either be on a Friday or on Wednesday the following week depending on which option is selected.

She also noted that spring breaks are at different times in 2019-20 and later than usual in 2020-21 and that is in part due to trying to balance out the number of days in each quarter and semester.  

Director of Communications Perry Hibner will send out a survey to staff, along with one to District families on Tuesday. The survey will close on Wednesday, Nov. 14. The results will be shared with the Board at its regular meeting on Nov. 19, when it the calendars could also be approved.   

In other news from Monday's meeting:

* The Board recognized five area businesses -- All Channel Electronics, Fleet Feet Sports, Integral Building Systems, Singlewire Software and UW Credit Union -- that were named Wisconsin Association of School Boards Business Honor Roll award recipients in September.

* The Board approved an amendment to the records retention schedule but requested that the District look further into how long to keep visitor log records.

Cheryl Janssen reviewed the changes with the Board. She noted Director of Technology Jim Blodgett had brought a number of issues forward. She said records dealing with investigations will be kept for two years, while it was proposed that visitor logs be kept for 30 days as schools aren't consistent about this.

The Board had concerns about keeping the logs for only 30 days. George Mavroulis said new systems the District is considering to track visitors in schools may help with this.

The Board previously approved the records retention schedule for state school districts in 2010 and 2016.  

* The Board approved a resolution authorizing a taxable tax and revenue anticipation promissory note for cash flow purposes not to exceed $4,445,000. The Board was asked to re-approve the resolution it originally approved last month. The State Bank of Cross Plains, which submitted a bid with a 3.4 percent interest rate, is still the recommended financial institution.

* The Board approved a payment to Godfrey & Kahn.