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Slater school board votes for tuition increase

Friday, April 9, 2010

The Slater School Board certified results from the April 6 election and two board members were sworn in at their meeting held on Friday, April 9 in the school library.

Incumbent Joey Gochenour was reelected with 142 votes and newcomer Darla Arni joined the board after receiving 122 votes. Russell Kirby received 121 votes followed by incumbent Larry Skinner Jr. with 103 votes.

Board secretary Jody Fuemueller gave the oath of office to Arni and Gochenour, who "attended" the meeting via an Internet connection. He is currently on military deployment in Iraq.

The board then voted to reelect Rick Hays as president, Mike Venable as vice president and Fuemeller as secretary.

The board held a long discussion after Superintendent John McEachern proposed raising tuition for out-of-district students to $4,250 per student, an increase of $450. He noted that Marshall was raising their tuition to $5,200 for next year.

The original vote ended in a 3-3 tie, after Gochenour's Internet connection was lost. Repeated attempts to contact him were unsuccessful, so the board tabled the vote, until after executive session, where they eventually voted 4-2 to raise tuition for high school students to $4,250 and raise the grade school tuition $300 per year to $2,750 a student. Board members Rob Newman, Mike Venable, Rick Hays and Steve Taylor voted for the increase, while Arni and Fuemeuller voted against the increase.

In old business, McEachern said the state will be able to waive the license for the pre-kindergarten program while the new Early Childhood Center is being built next fall. After discussion, the board expressed interest in finding a space inside the school building to temporarily house the class, since the strict license procedures will be temporarily waived.

In other business the board:

- Voted to keep staff salaries at the current level, without any raise.

-Voted to approve the payment of $399 towards insurance for each full-time staff member, after discussing the different options. They will choose the insurance company at the next board meeting.

-Voted to hold half-day summer school for 16 days for kindergarten through 8th grade students. After discussion they agreed to talk to staff and parents about whether they will go for three weeks, five days a week or four weeks for four days a week. Since the state is no longer funding summer school, $12,000 of the come will come from Title I funds, while the rest will be funded by the district. The total expected cost is approximately $25,000

-Approved the 2010-2011 calendar. The first day of school for students will be Aug. 24.

During the budget report, McEachern, said that if the budget stays on the current track, they will end the fiscal year with a 13.4 percent reserve, down from 17 percent last year.

In executive session the board voted to hire back Jennifer Burks as a regular aide or assistant in pre-school and accepted the resignation of Mary Holt, pre-school assistant.

Contact Marcia Gorrell at marshallag@socket.net


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I am quite upset with Mr. McEachern. He once said as posted in an article that Slater was subsidizing rural schools children. Does he have to change his curriculum or amount of staff for the extra kids-- does he not receive funding thru the state for these kids?

Slater does not set the bar around the area for educational or extra curricular activities-- bad move for him to raise the tuition because as a rural parent Slater is not my first pick for where my children will attend high school-- we might as well get our money's worth as we do have 2 other choices and I assume most rural schools do have other options.

-- Posted by workingmom on Tue, Apr 13, 2010, at 9:13 AM

Out of district also includes those kids from the rural K-8 schools, where the sending district has to pay the tuition for their kids to attend high school - so now there will probably be a request for a tax increase in those districts in the future to accomodate their extra costs for these students.

As I have said before - I have to send my high school age children outside of our district, as it does not provide for 9-12, but yet I have no voting right when it comes to what the school board decides, because I have no say on who sits on the board. Do the members of the rural school boards have any opportunity to voice their opinion to districts like Slater and Marshall when the rural school districts will be affected by the decisions made by these larger districts where the kids must attend high school?

-- Posted by the26er on Mon, Apr 12, 2010, at 12:16 PM

Who pays tuition?---Out of area/district students?

If yes, how many in Marshall and Slater?

-- Posted by CWilli on Mon, Apr 12, 2010, at 11:23 AM

Tuition? Is this for out-of-district or out-of-town students?

-- Posted by upsedaisy on Mon, Apr 12, 2010, at 11:09 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
Out of district. I'll add that to the story. Thanks for pointing it out.


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