At the Trenton R-9 Board of Education meeting on April 12th, Superintendent Mike Stegman discussed the school district’s bomb threat on March 30th. He said a threat came into the Trenton Police Department regarding a suspicious package at the high school, and the police informed the school district.
Trenton Middle School and High School were evacuated with the help of the Trenton Police, Grundy County Sheriff’s Office, and Highway Patrol. Stegman reported local law enforcement swept the exterior of the building, and bomb-sniffing dogs were brought from Kansas City to sweep the interior of the building. The facilities were cleared at about 5:30 that evening, and high school students could return to the school to retrieve their items after the all-clear.
Stegman said the administration followed protocol and did a good job managing the event. He noted that he was out of town at a meeting when the incident happened, and High School Principal Kasey Bailey made the decision to evacuate. Stegman thinks it was a good decision.
He added that multiple schools in the area were called with threats that day. He said some schools evacuated, and some were locked down.
Stegman acknowledged he had been asked why parents were not notified earlier. He said part of the safety protocol is to not share locations of student movement until a threat is under control. He noted that, in the future, students may go to multiple sites, and the district would purposely not tell where.
Stegman reported the district is taking advantage of two grants. One is a Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund grant for $9,209.75 for reimbursement for career and technical education courses. The other is a Homeless Children and Youth grant for $6,782 to help offset materials and items for homeless students to help with learning loss.
Stegman reported Trenton R-9’s trash service contract with Rapid Removal ran out on April 1st. He said the contract ending “slipped up” on the district because the district had had the contract for a long time.
Stegman noted Trenton R-9 had been paying $800 per month for trash service, and the district received a bill for April for $4,000. He talked to Rapid Removal, and Stegman said the company told him to go out for bids if he did not like the price.
Stegman made calls and chose GFL Environmental at $2,000 per month. The district now has a 60-month contract with GFL.
Stegman said the district paid the $4,000 for April, and the district will change trash service providers in May. He said the first billing with GFL will be a little higher to get dumpsters for the district.
Stegman announced that Fifth Grade Science Teacher Rachael Rongey was selected by the board to be Trenton R-9’s Teacher of the Year. Rongey will represent the district at the Northwest Missouri Teacher of the Year competition.
Stegman reported the Citizens Bank and Trust School Card Program provided the school district with $3,517.05 for the fourth quarter. Since the program’s inception in August 2010, the district had received $100,209.95 from the program. The program pays the district five cents per school card swipe. Stegman noted the money funds many things, including field trips.
Instructional Coach Doctor Jill Watkins reported the first application window for the Grow Your Own Teachers Program for Alternative Certification opened on April 1st, and it will close on April 15th. Three applications had been submitted. Interviews will be scheduled from April 19th through May 6th. Program recipients will be notified, and award letters will be mailed before May 20th. Watkins said the first application window for the Grow Your Own Teachers Program for Dual Credit Reimbursement for ED200 will open this fall.
Watkins reported she has been working with the administration to create a curriculum development and professional development timeline as well as an action plan for next school year. The work includes a plan and timeline for each building regarding curriculum work, instructional framework, and professional development.
Watkins will also meet with Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Northwest Region Representative Nancy Greeley on April 21st to review the draft of the Trenton R-9 2022-2027 Continuous School Improvement Plan. Watkins said the process will ensure the district’s CSIP is in alignment with Missouri School Improvement Program 6, which will deploy this fall. After the review, Watkins and the administration team will make necessary changes to the CSIP before presenting it to the board of education for approval.
High School Principal Kasey Bailey presented the At-Risk Evaluation Report. He said the At-Risk Program includes in-school suspension in the three schools, a parent portal, the Trenton High School/Middle School Academic Lab, and the Success Center. Preventative programs include Bulldog Bridge for THS and TMS and Tier 2/Tier 3 Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support at Rissler Elementary School.
The Trenton R-9 Board of Education on April 12th approved health insurance plans that will be offered to employees for 2022-2023. Missouri Educators’ Trust Plan 16 will be offered with buy-up options for plans 15, 12, 8, and 3.
Plan 16 HDSP will cost $470.60 through Blue Access Preferred Care and $448.90 for Blue Preferred Alliance EPO. Plan 15 PPO will cost $635.32 for Preferred Care Blue and $606.02 for Preferred Alliance. Plan 12 HDHP will cost $583.35 for Preferred Care Blue and $556.43 for Preferred Alliance. Plan 8 PPO costs $698.34 for Preferred Care Blue and $666.12 for Preferred Alliance. Plan 3 PPO will cost $807.58 for Preferred Care Blue and $770.32 for Preferred Alliance.
The school district contributes $602 per month per employee for health insurance.
Superintendent Mike Stegman said having the four buy-up plans expands offerings. Plans 3, 8, and 12 were offered for employees for 2021-2022.
The board approved a budget amendment involving adjusting the Title Fund amounts that Trenton R-9 acquired after the initial budget was set. The amounts were amended to reflect the final amounts the district will receive from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The prior period adjustments were made to reflect a transfer of $522,935 from the General Fund to the Capital Projects Fund that occurred in June 2021.
The board approved two GEC grant application requests. Trenton Middle School Art Teacher Sheridan Mounce is applying for a grant for $837 for a Brent Ware cart to be used to dry three-dimensional art pieces. TMS Computer Teacher Charley Crimi is applying for a grant for $600 for items to be used to teach coding units for fifth and sixth-grade students.
A bid from Fisher Tracks was approved for track repair at C. F. Russell Stadium. The bid of $71,640 will include double structural spray, repair, and striping. Fisher’s bid was the lowest of the three received. The other bids were $92,172 from McConnell and Associates plus $16,604 for the base and asphalt repair if needed and $84,000 from Pro Track and Tennis. It was noted Fisher did the Trenton R-9 track project in 2008.
The board-certified results from the April 5th election. Board Secretary Susan Leeper administered the oath of office to incoming board members Dorothy Taul, Jeff Spencer, and Jason Hostetler. Taul and Hostetler were incumbents. Taul and Spencer will serve three-year terms, and Hostetler will serve a one-year unexpired term.
The board reorganized with Taul staying as president, and Brandon Gibler remaining as vice president. Melissa King is the treasurer. Outgoing Board Member Marcie Cutsinger was previously the treasurer. Leeper will stay as the secretary. The Missouri School Boards Association delegate will still be Taul, and the alternate delegate will remain Gibler.
Stegman recognized outgoing Cutsinger and thanked her for her service.
Following an executive session Monday night for personnel, the Trenton R-9 School District announced the board accepted three resignations.
Resignations include High School Principal Kasey Bailey along with 8th-grade social studies teacher Joel Hultman and 3rd-grade teacher Marcie Stegman.
New hires as elementary grade teachers for next year are Kaylee Myers, Andrew Pauley, and Chelsea Coe.
Coaches hired were Jon Guthrie as varsity boys basketball coach, Zane Robinson as assistant varsity football coach, Adam Clark as assistant middle school girls basketball coach, and for summer weights: Kevin Hixson and Jon Guthrie.
Employed for the summer school staff were teachers, paras, and cooks.
Numerous hirings were made for extra duty assignments and sponsors within the Trenton R-9 School District.