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Board Minutes October 3, 2017 Joint Meeting with Hampton-Dumont

Minutes of the CAL Board of Education Joint Meeting October 3, 2017

The CAL Board of Education met for a joint meeting with the Hampton-Dumont Board of Education on October 3, 2017 in the CAL Media Center.  President Mitch Vanness called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.  Present were Board members Mitch Vanness, Rob Peil, Austin Elling, and Cathy Carlson.  Jacob McNutt was absent.

Visitors included: Roy Plagge; Mark Johansen; Sue DeBour; Jeanne Plagge; Sharon Ellling; Beth Podalan; Karen Waage; Dixie Olk; Ethan Stoetzer and Brian Fancher.

 

Mr. Lettow led the meeting and first asked everyone to introduce themselves.  After introductions Mr. Lettow made mention that there will be times during the whole grade sharing discussions that the districts may not agree on a certain topic but ultimately we need to work together to find a solution that is best for the kids. 

 

Mr. Lettow then began the conversation on the transportation agreement between the two districts.  Mitch Vanness took a few minutes to discuss the rationale behind CAL’s decision to deny the Strother transportation request and went over each item that was printed in the paper and said on the radio.  Short discussion was held on each of those topics.

 

Mr. Lettow asked that Austin Elling quickly explain CAL’s thought process in regards to CAL’s decision to share football with Clarion-Goldfield-Dow.  Elling explained that CAL went to Hampton-Dumont first in regards to sharing football but since it would bump Hampton-Dumont up in class and disqualify them from play-off opportunities they declined.  C-G-D offered to let the CAL football team to join their program and CAL accepted the offer.  The following year CAL asked H-D, Belmond-Klemme and CGD to give a presentation to a committee of community members, players, staff and administration on how they would integrate the CAL kids into their football programs.  The committee felt that C-G-D offered the best opportunity for the CAL kids and that was the program that the board chose to go with.

Tom Birdsell expressed that he felt H-D’s biggest concern on the transportation issue was that they felt continuing the agreement was what was best for the children in that situation but that after discussions with the CAL board that he did does understand CAL’s reasoning for denying the request.  Cathy Carlson also mentioned that part of the CAL decision was that CAL is trying to keep a successful elementary for many years and that opening up the borders for one family would cause others to put in requests for transportation.

 

Mr. Lettow then quickly gave a quick review about how the whole grade sharing discussion arose between the two districts. 

 

Jacob McNutt arrived at 8:12 p.m.

 

Cathy Carlson mentioned that she felt that maybe the community has not heard the words that if CAL doesn’t do anything in regards to sharing they will not have a school much longer.  Her hope is that the two districts could possibly provide opportunities for students to get the education in specific areas that can help them get a job and possibly get them to come back to our communities.  Her hope is that the two districts can work together and provide the best possible school for the students.

 

Mr. Lettow then held short discussion on what questions/concerns the two districts need to address first in regards to whole grade sharing. He mentioned that the reasoning between the sharing percentage amount was that the budget was looked over and making sure that the district had the numbers/money to back the decision that was being made.

Elling expressed concerns that the public does not know exactly what whole grade sharing means and that it needed to be explained to the public.   Other ideas included: getting the kids together as much as possible; looking into whether the districts could work together on transportation to make things more efficient for both schools; hold more joint board meetings; figure out a plan in regards to staff so that staff could be informed of what positions will be available; send out surveys to get concerns from parents, students and community members in regards to the whole grade sharing.

 

Motion by Elling, second by Carlson to adjourn the meeting.  All ayes.  The meeting was adjourned at 8:46 p.m.

 

 

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CAL Community School District1441 Gull Ave.Latimer, IA  50452

Phone: 641-579-6087Fax: 641-579-6408

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