SW board presented with goals


CUTLINE: Allan Schmitt (seated) was honored for his 14 years of service to the South Winn school board at its Tuesday, Sept. 3, meeting. After serving as president for many years, Schmitt has decided not to seek re-election. Other current members of the board include (standing, l-r) Bob Busch, Arnie Kriender, Wendy Mihm-Herold, and Don Schroeder. (submitted photo) 




SW board presented with goals


Becky Walz
News Editor



Using the Iowa Assessment national percentile rankings for reading comprehension, math, and science, the South Winn school board approved improvement goals of a 5 percent increase for elementary/middle school students on Tuesday, Sept. 3. 

At the high school, all percentages are based on cohort groups and require three nonproficient students to move to proficiency.

Superintendent Chris Hoover informed the board that the track has been prepped and the synthetic surface has begun to be laid. The grass has taken a turn for the better and will be ready for the football team’s home opener on Friday. All home games will be played in Calmar on the renovated field.

It was decided that the 14’x24’ greenhouse structure will be placed in the parking lot across from the District Office as a temporary location and should be fully operational by spring 2014.

In a spotlight on education segment, SODA sponsor Jessica Peters and student Carter Broszeit have a presentation on the new SODA website 222.swsoda.yolasite.com. 

Broszeit, a junior, developed the website and has created business cards for the SODA team.

Peters informed the board that last year SODA had 142 members, which was 60 percent of the high school. Members are planning one to two activities per month for students, which begins Saturday with a barn dance.

Board members discussed the pros and cons of allowing off-duty peace officers carrying firearms on school premises, as requested by the county attorney.

“What is the advantage of this to the district?” questioned board member Wendy Mihm-Herold. 

Hoover assured the board that it is only in case something should happen at a school function, and with an armed peace officer there would be no lag in response time.

He added that the privilege could be revoked at any time.

“I don’t see it as either an advantage or disadvantage,” remarked Hoover. “Other local boards are also taking this under consideration.”

Board member Arnie Kriener noted that there are just as many disadvantages as advantages to having an off-duty peace officer carrying a weapon on school property.

The issue was tabled until the next board meeting in order to have Officer Tim Felton present to provide more information.

Discussion was held regarding offering staff an early-retirement package, but board members requested additional details and will further the discussion at a future board meeting.

Appointments approved by the board include Paul Ludwig (musical set design), Michael Wenthold (volunteer JH football coach), and Keith Frana (sub bus driver).

In other business, the board:

• Presented board president Allan Schmitt with a plaque and thanked him for his 14 years of service to the South Winneshiek CSD Board of Education.

• Approved an out-of-state field trip for eighth-grade students and LEGO League to visit the NOAA National Weather Service location in LaCrosse, Wis., on Monday, Oct. 7.

The next regular meeting of the South Winn school board will be at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 7, in the Calmar board room.


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