Southwest R-V School Board holds lease purchase hearing

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Southwest R-V School Board held a lease purchase hearing at its regularly scheduled meeting on May 8.

Tom Pisarkiewicz, L.J. Hart and Company vice president, presented the board with information on financing a district improvement project that would include the renovation of the middle school bathrooms and the construction of a bus barn.

According to Pisarkiewicz, the district could qualify for a $336,000 lease purchase agreement, which would provide the school with $320,000 to complete the capital improvement project. The agreement would extend the district's current lease purchase agreement by eight years without raising the annual payment, which is around $60,000.

"The $320,000 is the high side of how much it would cost to complete the bathrooms and bus barn," said Superintendent Doug Lawyer. "Now that we have held the hearing we can decide how much we will need after we get the bids for the project."

"Once we have the exact amount for the project, we will be able to move quickly and finalize the agreement and get the money to you," said Pisarkiewicz.

After the lease purchase hearing, the board was addressed by Jason Horn, boys basketball coach.

"We have made some big strides in our programs, and I think the students will be the ones who are hurt if you pull the assistant coaches away," said Horn. "You will be punishing the kids that show up to play."

According to Horn, the board decided to limit the number of assistant coaches used in each program based on the number of students who are participating in the sport.

"I have two quality guys on staff, and I couldn't be luckier," said Horn. "If you want to see our athletic programs go to that next step, don't cut them out.

"I'm thinking of the kids, the school and the program," said Horn. "I hope you will think about the future and where you want this program to go."

"We did this to see what you can do, what the other coaches can do and what the athletic director can do to get more kids involved in the program," said board member Pete Rose. "We wanted to prompt recruiting more students to be involved in the program."

"Our numbers are going to go up by winning," said Horn. "When you lose, no one wants to be a part of it. I want this to be a top notch program and I want to help these kids get scholarships. I'm doing all I can to build the numbers up and still take care of the ones that are already out there."

The board made no decisions regarding Horn's concerns about limiting the number of assistant coaches.

The board also approved several new teachers and summer staff members. Kathleen Blum, middle school communication arts, Eric Field, high school communication arts, and Judith Miller, special education, will join the R-V School District next year.

Summer employees will include: Cole Moore, Kyle Brooks, Duane Tate, Staci Day, Brittany Wright, Ryan Pendergraft, Carl Wayne Hendrix, Chelsea Sneed, Katie Taylor, Haley Clifton, Byron Stephens and Connie Cross.

In other business, the Southwest R-V School Board:

* Approved the middle and high school student handbooks with several suggested changes, including the removal of the district's corporal punishment policy.

* Decided to tour the buildings and review the proposed summer projects at 6 p.m. on May 27.

* Held a one-hour and 56-minute executive session to discuss personnel matters.

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