Exeter SB discusses funding issues

Thursday, April 28, 2011

On April 13, Exeter Superintendent Dr. Ernest Raney updated the R-6 Board on state and federal funding concerns.

"On Monday, there was still no move to approve the jobs bill, which would provide flat funding for schools next year," said Raney. "On Tuesday, we received some good news. It looks like the Senate will approve the jobs bill, which will mean $85,000 for our school district next year.

"This funding is critical to us and all of the districts," said Raney. "We are very thankful that the Senate decided to stop filibustering this bill and allow it to come to a vote. It was widely approved in the House and looks to be in the Senate as well. This is very good news for us."

Raney shared information on how summer school could impact future funding.

"We are going to have summer school, which I think is good," said Raney. "I am glad we will have something to offer students."

The Exeter School District maintains a daily attendance below 350 students, which qualifies the district as a small school. This designation provides the district with $185,000 in funding each year.

"We have been running in the low 340s with summer school included," said Raney. "For this reason, I think it is in our best interest to offer a scaled-back, half-day summer school rather than a full-day summer school this year."

Summer school will be offered to all elementary students and high school students who need remedial help or credit recovery. High school students will be able to recover two credits during the half-day summer session.

"Instead of limiting the number of students who can attend summer school the program will be open to all elementary students and we will limit class time to half a day," said Raney.

Summer school will be offered from 8 a.m. to noon. Breakfast will be served from 7:30 to 8 a.m. and lunch will be served from 11 to 11:30 a.m. Transportation will be provided for the summer program.

"The families and other kids living in the district who are not attending summer school are welcome to come and eat," said Tamra Kester, elementary school principal and summer school director.

Raney also presented the board with information on the district's average daily attendance, which must reach 93.6 percent this year in order to satisfy annual performance report requirements.

"Attendance was a concern last year," said Raney. "It was on the list of things we need to monitor. It is critical that attendance be at its very best from here on out this year. We don't have many days left, so we want every day to count."

In other business, the Exeter R-6 School Board:

* Approved the 2011-12 school year calendar. Classes will begin on Aug. 17 this fall.

* Elected the following new board officers: Eric O'Neill, president; Kerry Mattingly, vice president; Sammy Schmidt, treasurer; and Janice Stephens, secretary.

* Received a letter of resignation from Carly Wright, vocal music teacher.

* Heard administrative reports.

* Reviewed the Missouri School Board Association's (MSBA) new corporal punishment policy.

* Heard that the spring MSBA meeting will be held in Lamar at 6:30 p.m. on April 26.

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