Supt. Ihns gives report to board

Howard-Winneshiek - The Howard-Winneshiek School Board met early to give board members an opportunity to attend a school Christmas program on Dec. 17.
Supt. Ted Ihns reported the end of the first semester was to be Dec. 21, with the winter break being Dec. 24-Jan. 2 for students. Teachers were to have an in-service day on Jan. 2, which included a violent intruder training and personal professional development opportunity.
“I would just like to congratulate these individuals who are graduating early from Crestwood High School and wish them good luck in their future plans. They are Lawsen Duerre, Justine Snow, Stephen Dietz, Bailey Hageman, April Halverson, Harry Kitchen, Ben Koshell, Kayley Menne and Kaylee Worple.”
He also noted he had sent out a tweet on Sunday, Dec. 16, which marked 50 years to the day students moved into the new Crestwood High School. “Classmates of mine and other graduates of Crestwood sent back comments including they are happy it is being kept updated and other memories.”
The school may do something on May 7, which will be 50 years since it was dedicated.
Ihns stated the new Iowa School Performance Profiles, an accountability measure, was to be put on the school’s website for the public to look over.
• In other business from the meeting, Ann Smith, Director of Special Education/ Student Services, gave a report on the At-Risk/Dropout program.
Smith spoke on what the district is doing to keep dropout numbers down. 
The Connections Program targets freshmen with a one-day Respect Retreat. It is supposed to foster relationships between students.
The Alternative Program is for high school students and helps them learn in a non-traditional classroom. The main goal is to have students focus on completing school. Teacher Julie Montgomery stated there are, on average, 15 students in the program.
For those students who did not pass a class, they are given the opportunity for credit recovery, mostly in the reading and math areas.
Other programs taking place include academic support, reading intervention, Success Program and Child and Family Case Management help.
The At-Risk/Dropout budget is 93 percent salaries and benefits with the remainder being spent on educational services, professional development and materials. All of these resources are used to help students graduate.
• Smith also asked for approval to purchase 20 two-way Motorola portable radios.  They are digital rather than analog. Board members Karlos McClure and Alison Holten felt an extra should be purchased for safety sake in case one breaks down. It was explained the school could move the others around in case of a break down. 
Cost for 20 is $11,140.52. Money would come out of the general fund and not Physical Plant and Equipment Levy (PPEL).
The board approved (Todd Hill, Duane Bodermann, Holten and Toni Johnson aye; McClure nay). 
• Caleb Shaeffer requested the purchase of 20 football helmets and 30 shoulder pads from Riddell for $13,000. He noted the companies that reconditioned the equipment were cracking down on safety. Instead of going several years, the helmets will be reconditioned every other year.
Shaeffer said he also approached the Booster Club to help with the expense.
All members voted aye, with Hill commenting, “We gotta keep those kids safe out there.”
• Hill was appointed to the Winneshiek County Conference Board.
• Ihns added all buses moving forward will need seatbelts. Although optional, the last two buses ordered by the board contained seatbelts.
The next board meeting will be on Monday, Jan. 21 at NICC-Cresco Center.

Cresco Times

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

Cresco TPD
214 N. Elm Street
Cresco, IA 52136

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