Malta Bend school board discusses cost-cutting, corporal punishment

Friday, February 13, 2009

The 2009-2010 school year at Malta Bend School will start on Aug. 24, 2009, the school board decided at its meeting Thursday, Feb. 12. The board chose this option instead of an earlier date to avoid student absences during the Missouri State Fair, which runs Aug. 13-23.

In action items, the board approved three student fundraisers and discussed other fundraising ideas.

There was also discussion about the school's farmland, which had previously been leased out to farmers. The board decided to set aside the land for student use for Supervised Agriculture Education projects. Students will have to make "bids" to use the land.

Another action item the board approved concerned corporal punishment. Principal Roger Feagan said one parent had approached him in favor of using corporal punishment for children at school. The board moved to create a permission letter for parents to sign if they want to permit their children to be spanked at school.

In other business, the board heard from two individuals during public participation time.

First-grade teacher Veronica Bondy, of the teacher salary committee, shared the committee's proposals for cutting costs at the school, as well as a new salary schedule for teachers. Some of the ideas included combining classrooms, eliminating one administrative position and winterizing school windows. The committee asked the board to raise teacher base pay to $25,500; Missouri mandates $25,000 as a minimum salary.

Student Council President Dakota Kiser reported to the board about a Student Council discussion on in-school suspension and bad language at school. Kiser said that STUCO hoped the board would make ISS stricter as more of an incentive to behave in class.

In the principal's report, Feagan said high school attendance in January was slightly up at 91.7 percent and elementary attendance had fallen to 93.2 percent.

Feagan also said he had talked to other schools, such as Sweet Springs and Santa Fe, about block scheduling, after Malta Bend students had expressed a wish for it. But after his discussions with other districts he said, "I just don't think we should try to tackle it," citing the school's small student body and staff as obstacles.

In her report, Superintendent Melissa Vesser reported on electrical, plumbing, heating and stove repairs throughout the school. She said some of the problems occurred after the heavy rain a few days ago.

The board adjourned into executive session to discuss personnel, legal, property and student matters.

The board's budget committee will meet Monday, March 2, at 3 p.m. The board also set a date for a working board meeting to discuss the budget and teacher salaries: March 9 at 6 p.m. The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Malta Bend Board of Education is Thursday, March 12, at 7 p.m.

Contact Sydney Stonner at

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  • Corporal punishment-- are we moving backwards into the dark ages-- most children that "seemingly" need corporal punsihment are those that usually have faced ineffective punishment of the same caliber at home-- get real people-- you are in the area of education -- aren't you educated on other means of effective punishment such as love and logic

    -- Posted by workingmom on Fri, Feb 13, 2009, at 3:27 PM
  • yeah lets try that whole love and logic crap some more because we haven't thought enough kids that think there are no real consequences to there actions. i faced the so called ineffective punishment at home and at school growing up and let me tell you it was rather effective. we are raising childern these days that are in no way prepared for the real world by taking competition away from them and teaching them that they are the center of the universe. child center parenting is crap and it will be the down fall of our nation. if school officials want to use corporal punishment on my childern and are willing to follow strict and proper guidelines then they have my support. its peoplt like this that make it dangerous to spank you own childern anymore. wake up america!

    -- Posted by marshallguy76 on Fri, Feb 13, 2009, at 3:41 PM
  • i don't want to be misunderstood so i need to correct myself, i meant taught not thought in my first sentence

    -- Posted by marshallguy76 on Fri, Feb 13, 2009, at 3:43 PM
  • -- Posted by MBGAL on Wed, Mar 18, 2009, at 8:49 PM
  • I agree that some kids deserve a good swat now and then but I just don't think I could give my permission to allow anyone else to do that to my kids but me. What they(school member) might consider to be a wrongful enough act to get a swat might not be what I would consider to be wrongful enough. Besides, lets face it...if they aren't getting any discipline at home they are not going to give permission for their kids to get discipline at school. I agree with Marshallguy76 though, kids these days have had things handed to them, they don't know disappointment and I feel sorry for them.

    -- Posted by MBGAL on Wed, Mar 18, 2009, at 9:07 PM
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