By Crystal Howerton
Several important items were discussed during the November 20 meeting of the Knox County R-1 Board of Education including the replacement of all of the interior doorknobs and locks original to the high school building.
Upon recommendations by Superintendent D.J. Leverton and Maintenance Director Steve Ramer, school board members voted unanimously to purchase a new locking system for the high school interior doors from A-1 Security, Quincy, IL at approximately $13,000 for a variety of reasons.
The current locking system does not meet the ADA (American Disabilities Act) requirements and while currently this is not an issue, it very well could be in the future. The current locking system poses numerous problems including the possibility of doors sticking which could become a safety issue for students. Keys that no longer work has required that the knobs be keyed a number of times. According to Ramer, it is becoming impossible to locate parts to fix doors without taking pieces from other doors, in addition to the large amount of time spent fixing old knobs and locks. Furthermore, the knobs and locks are original to the high school building; board members feel that in the 42 years that the locks have been in service they have more the served their purpose and this would be an easier key management system to maintain for school safety.
Several businesses were contacted to bid the new locks, however, the chosen company was the only one that was willing to send a representative to the school to do a walk through.
Another important issue regarding the structural analysis and report for the District's central office was also discussed. Martin Meyer, AIA, with Architechnics, Inc. of Quincy, IL was present to discuss a recent tour of the apparent structural problems concerning the central office and recommend multiple solutions. School board members did not immediately vote on a solution but were informed by Meyer that there was ample time to discuss the different options and contact him about a project for Summer 2008.
In other business, CTA Representative Lindsay Becraft announced that Diana Ramer was chosen as the Outstanding Educator for the month of November.
Administrators reported good parent participation during fall parent/teacher conferences prior to a report given by Marilyn Waite regarding the Parent Involvement Committee, which has also shown good participation.
High School Principal Andy Turgeon announced that Junior Tara Mason was recently accepted for the Republican Page program in Washington, D.C. Mason will be enrolled in five honors classes while working as a page during the second semester. Administrators, as well as, school board members extended congratulations to Ms. Mason on this huge honor, as she is one of twenty-four Republican pages selected nation wide.
Congratulations were also extended to Junior Lisa Blake who earned first chair in the All-District Band. She competed against over forty of the most talented flute players in Northeast Missouri, including flutists from 4A schools in Columbia and Troy and all the smaller schools, as well. Blake will audition for all-state band at Hickman High School in Columbia on December 1, 2007.
Elementary Principal Marty Strange reported on Harvest Healthy Habits that took place November 20, 2007. Knox County students earned approximately $1,300 for the Diabetes Association.
Supt. Leverton briefly discussed the high school roof project that is nearing completion stating that a final inspection is to be completed this week.
It was also mentioned that the District did very well at The Farm Shop's annual Fall Consignment Sale, including a number of projects crafted and sold by Ag students. The monies made from the sale will allow students to purchase materials for additional projects, under the direction of Ag Instructor Ben Bradley.
A Preliminary APR report presented by Marilyn Waite revealed that the District was met in 14 out of 14 standards for 2007. Waite believes that the perfect APR score should lead to the Knox County R-1 School District being recognized for the second consecutive year with the Distinction in Performance Award by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Waite stated, "The success in meeting state and federal standards is a credit to all students, parents, and staff members of the Knox County R-1 School District."
School Board members set filing dates for the April 8, 2008 Election. Board candidate filing opens December 18, 2007 and will close January 22, 2008. Lastly, the school audit for 2006-07 was approved.