The Cozad Community School Board met for a regular meeting on Monday.
Cozad parent BJ Malcom introduced Mark Hotaling, Founder and President and Rick Christopherson, Group Services Coordinator from the Makhaira Group out of Fort Collins, Colorado.
Malcom and Hotaling became business friends and then hunting buddies several years ago. The Makhaira Group provides security assessments for schools and churches and then reports back with recommendations to improve security.
Malcom and a group of parents agreed to foot the bill for all four buildings to be assessed in the school district on Tuesday, March 20th. Principals and other administrators accompanied Hotaling and Christopherson as they looked at Cozad Elementary, Cozad Early Elementary Center, Cozad Middle School and Cozad High School. “We are not here to criticize or put anyone or any building down,” Hotaling explained. “We are an objective third party who will observe and make recommendations to improve security at all four buildings, providing you with a report on each within 30 days,” he continued. “We realize that your time and funding is limited but will be available for consultation after you receive our report,” Hotaling concluded.
There were two Discussion Items on the agenda: the Proposed Playground Project by the Elementary Parent Organization and the Textbook Adoption for the 2018-2019 term.
Blanca Prado appeared on behalf of the Cozad Elementary Parent Organization. The organization is researching available grants and would like to go through the school for these grants. However, since the school isn’t tax exempt, they are asking for other possible ways to secure these matching grant funds with the grant requests due in June or July. The organization is seeking to receive matching grants from funds they have raised.
Board President Ann Burkholder felt that perhaps matching funds could be secured through the CCS Foundation or another tax-exempt entity. Superintendent Joel Applegate will be checking with the school’s attorney on the legality of the school being involved in this grant process even though the district itself would not be providing any funding.
Superintendent Applegate informed the board members that textbooks would be purchased for the Ag classes and for Elementary Music. “They will need to be ordered by April to get here in time for the 2018-19 school year,” Applegate added.
The transfer of $30,252.59 from the Building Fund to the General Fund for the reimbursement of expenses for the elementary addition was approved. Also approved was the transfer of $4,320 from the Depreciation Fund to the General Fund for the reimbursement of expenses for the high school track.
The resignation of Middle School Science teacher HaLea Messersmith was approved at the end of the current school year. Messersmith will be following her dream of becoming a professor at Mid-Plains Community College in North Platte.
The board members acknowledged the resignations of Messersmith as Head Varsity Softball Coach and from High School English teacher Jann Kloepping as the Cozad Jazz Dance Team sponsor. Kloepping has devoted 25 years as dance team sponsor.
Approved as Certificated Staff for the 2018-2019 school year were Ashley Ford in Middle School Science; Stephanie Flint as Elementary Counselor and Tracey Keifer as an Elementary TLC teacher.
Ford will take over the reigns of the High School Softball Team as Head Coach. CHS Family & Consumer Science Teacher Michelle Irvine will be the new dance team sponsor.
A contract was approved for occupational therapy services for the 2018-2019 school year with Danette Anderson; OTD OTR/L. Anderson lives in Gothenburg and will continue to serve the students in Gothenburg as well as Cozad.
“We should save some money from our current contract with ESU10,” according to Special Education Director Jill Beckenhauer. “We will be receiving the same services as we have been with Anderson serving both school districts on an as-needed basis.
Approval was granted to hire the CPA Firm, Almquist, Maltzahn, Galloway & Luth, PC, Grand Island, Nebraska for the district’s auditing and accounting services for 2018, 2019 and 2020. This firm has been providing this service and cast the lone bid for the next three years of service.
Superintendent Applegate reported that the Driver’s Education Contract for the summer of 2018 fee would remain the same.
The board approved Kucirek Engineering to receive bids for the High School HVAC project in phases.
A closed meeting then took place with the following receiving approval by the board members: Dr. Applegate’s Superintendent’s Contract for the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 contract years; the proposed Classified Staff Salary Packages and the 2018-2019 Administration Contracts and Salaries.
The next meeting is scheduled for Monday, April 16th beginning at 7 p.m.