New rugby team for students at H-W

CRESCO - Adam Simiele spoke during open forum  of the Howard-Winneshiek board meeting on March 18 about a new rugby team available to students. Although it is not a school-sponsored team, How-Winn students can practice and have games on school property — similar to the Cresco-Area Clay Crushers trapshooting team.
The idea of a rugby team was brought forward two or three years ago, but didn’t go very far. Now it is under full steam. Simiele noted there were seven boys participating, which makes up a team. There is a possibility of having a girls team in the fall.
The sport is similar to football as tackling is involved. Simiele stated, though, that concussions related to rugby are 35 percent lower than football.
“It costs $90-100 to play. We are doing fund-raising. Our goal is to be self-sustaining. We are looking for sponsors now,” Simiele said.
• In a related topic, school nurses Amy Drees and Sheila Halweg reported on the Concussion Policy and Protocol for 2019-2020 school year. 
Halweg noted the policy is an update to the Iowa law. It describes how teachers can watch kids to possibly see if they are experiencing a concussion.
Drees said there are specific time frames to follow, and students should be seen every week. This includes accidents that happened at school and at home. “Students need to return to learning before they start practice again,” she said. In addition, a healthcare person needs to evaluate the kids.
• Supt. Ted Ihns gave his report to the board. He reminded them about the number of days missed due to weather. Three days from the spring break over Easter were taken back, April 18 and 22-23. In addition, the March 18 staff development day was used as a make-up day. “That does give us a little bit of a cushion of three hours before we would have to make any other calendar adjustments. As it stands of today, the last day with students will be May 22.”
He stated both Crestwood elementary and secondary schools were finishing up their make-ups for the Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student Progress tests.
“The Iowa Department of Education released the graduation rates for the state as well as for [How-Winn] for both the Class of 2017 and 2018. The class of 2017 five-year cohort rate was 94.5 percent compared to the state rate of 93.3, and the 2018 four-year graduation rate was 96.61 percent compared to the state rate of 91.4.”
He touched on Crestwood graduation follow-up surveys. Principal Chris Rogne stated not many participate in the survey. A few suggestions were given, including having the survey online.
Facilities committee meetings are starting April 17 at the high school media center.
The robotics team was to have its first competition on March 22 at UNI. (Look for an update in a future issue of the Times Plain Dealer.)
Crestwood had four students named to all-state speech. They are Dave Meinecke, Eric Trautsch, Daniel Lares and Mitchell Melass.
Lastly, he thanked Larry Trende and the maintenance staff, Brian Swestka and the bus drivers and students, staff and families for persevering through the winter weather and changed schedules.
• The school board voted to pave the north employee parking lot. The low bid was $115,650 from Cresco Building Service. Trende noted he was told the work would take one day.
• Trende also requested the board to approve temperature controls for the bus garage and football concession stand. “I have control on my computer for all the other rooms and facilities,” Trende noted. “If something happens to be left on over the weekend, I will have the control to turn it down. Also, instead of plugging buses in at night, I can turn them on at 3 a.m. to save money.” 
The board unanimously approved the request.
• Swestka requested a V-plow for the transportation department. He said, “Three times I found myself using my own personal vehicle to plow out snow for buses for some students who were snowed in. Winneshiek County did not plow as early as Howard County.” He said the equipment could also be used to plow out the bus garage area.
The board approved the $6,255 price tag 4-1 (Duane Bodermann, Toni Johnson, Alison Holten, Karlos McClure for and Todd Hill against. He did not think it was worth the money and would be hard on equipment)
• The board will be taking bids on replacing the windows at the high school. Trende said, “Surprisingly, there are as many windows around the outside of the high school as there are around the courtyard.”
• Two representatives from Hacker, Nelson & Co. gave an audit report to the board.
It showed the district’s revenues for the year ending June 30, 2018 were $17,028,394, a 9.43 percent increase from the year before. Expenses were $17,502,353, a 13.6 percent increase from the previous year.
The next regular board meeting will be April 15, at NICC-Cresco.

Cresco Times

Phone: 563-547-3601
Fax: 563-547-4602

Cresco TPD
214 N. Elm Street
Cresco, IA 52136

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