After a long discussion, the Slater Board of Education voted unanimously to approve a new "Activities Code of Ethical Behavior."
The code of conduct, which was developed by Slater coaches and building principals, applies to any student who participates in extracurricular activities in the school district. It follows Missouri State High School Athletic Association guidelines in many cases, however, one stipulation, that students with an F in any class can't participate, is stricter than MSHSAA guidelines. MSHSAA's policy allows students to participate who have no more than two F grades in core subjects. Slater's new policy also requires that students maintain a grade point average of 2.0 or above.
Board President Rick Hays said for some students it would be an incentive to keep from getting an F.
"I know some of the students in the past, if it wasn't for sports or extra curricular activities, that's some of the reason they got what grades they did," Hays said.
Coaches and advisors will explain the policy to students at the beginning of activities next year. The policy goes into effect immediately, but the grade requirements will begin at first quarter mid-term in the 2009-2010 school year.
In closed session, the board voted to hire Quality Network Solutions of Illinois to provide complete technology support for the district. The company's owner, Mel Workman, was at the regular meeting to explain his company's services.
The company will charge a flat fee of $120 per computer for unlimited assistance. Superintendent John McEachern estimated the district has about 200 computers, but the company will do a complete assessment to determine the exact number.
QNS currently provides similar services in 43 school districts, including nine in Missouri.
Workman told the board that in 11 years of business, he hasn't had a district discontinue his services yet.
"He is already at Salisbury and LaPlata and they sing high praises of the company," said McEachern.
The board also approved a declaration of surplus property, which includes several old but useable desks and computer monitors. McEachern asked the board for permission to sell or give away the property if there was an opportunity.
The board voted to take bids for work on the Alexander Building, where water damage is being found in the northeast and southeast corners of the third floor.
"The roof doesn't leak, but it is coming in somewhere," said McEachern.
The board also voted to accept bids in order to do "a little bit of cost analysis" before deciding how to address problems at the school's playground.
The playground will be shut down this week after a recent assessment found problems with the surface and some of the equipment. Currently, students are using the city park play area or doing alternative activities.
"With all the rain, the wood chips keep floating away," said McEachern, speaking of the surface material under the equipment.
Instead of replacing wood chips, which cost over $8,000 two years ago and need to be replaced again, McEachern suggested a permanent rubber surface.
"I'd like to be able to get someone in here and get some professional opinion on what we need to do and how we need to go about it," McEachern told the board.
Some bond money is leftover which could be used for the project and district officials are also applying for grants from Lowes and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. McEachern said they are also working with the school's PTO on the issue.
In other business, the board accepted several bids for the 2009-2010 school year, including fuel from MFA, bread from Sara Lee and milk from Central Dairy.
The board also voted to implement "summer hours" for the summer staff, from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Summer school is four days a week.
All board members were present at the meeting.