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By Mike Scott
The Clark County R-1 school board looked like it was ready to give the green light adding varsity baseball during their Tuesday, August 3 meeting, but the lack of a clear understanding about field availably.
Clark County baseball supporters, along with representatives from the Kahoka Summer Ball Association were in attendance.
The board reviewed the expected start-up costs of a baseball program, including uniforms, equipment, travel and coaching expenses.
“I think we can handle that,” said board president Brad Sprague.
At issue was whether the proposed high school baseball team would have the field to practice after school five days a week, plus schedule home games.
The high school baseball season would start practice in early March, wrapping up the season in mid-May. After that, the team would likely play in a summer league, similar to what the softball team does.
Summer Ball Association practice begins April 1.
Currently, the team all practice and play on the two fields on Vine Street, except that some of the youngest teams practice at O-Mak-O-Hak Park.
“We’re going to have problems scheduling five days a week,” said Larry Young of the Summer Ball Association.
“We have always been willing to work with everyone, from four years old to 18, but I don’t want any one group taking advantage of another,” Young said.
“There is no guarantee we can make it work with so many teams,” added Eric Young.
“We cannot have a high school athletics program that doesn’t practice every day,” said CCR-1 Superintendent Ritchie Kracht.
Board member Craig Hunziker questioned if there are enough boys interested in baseball.
“I think there is a real want for it right now, but it’s going to be up and down. Football is bordering right now for having enough kids, “Hunziker said.
The proposal to add baseball also includes adding a girls golf team.
“Is there any interest in girls’ golf,” asked board member Kari Bevans.
“No, but Jason (Church) and I strongly feel is we ad a boys sport we should add a girls sport,” Kracht answered.
High school principal Jason Harper gave his opinions.
“One of the things that makes our school great is our extracurriculars,” he said. “At the same time, my number one concern is academic time for our kids.”
He noted that in the spring, students already miss a lot of class time for FFA, music, track and other competitions.
“There would be a group of student it would benefit,”Harper added, saying that outweighs any negatives.
Ultimately, a lack of agreement on field availably caused board president Brad Sprague to table the issue until next month’s meeting.
In other business, the board approved a motion to proceed with issuing a Request For Proposals to replace the HVAC system at the high school.
The board also discussed increasing non certified salaries, discussing whether some employees could be offered extra duty stipends to increase their pay without increasing the base pay for that position. That issue was also tabled.
Last year, the district was required to allow Black Hawk students to transfer to Running Fox because of Black Hawk’s academic performance.
The district was also responsible to provide transportation for students choosing Running Fox over Black Hawk. The school has received a state waiver, and will allow the students to stay at Running Fox if they choose, but will not provide transportation. The decision effects only two students.
In other business, the board:
–Awarded the newspaper printing bid for required notices to The Media.
–Approved the Annual School Board Reports for both CCR-1 and Revere Districts. The reports will be submitted to the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.