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by Patty Cheffey
The Palmyra R-I Board of Education continued to work on the 2022-23 school year budget, receiving some updates on some state figures.
Superintendent Kirt Malone not only updated the board on that information, but also provided a legislative updates, and the board approved the school improvement plan updates and filled several classified staff positions.
The preliminary budget reflects full funding of the state foundation formula which is at the same level for the fourth consecutive year and an increase of about 2 percent in local funding.
“State and federal funds to continue to come in as expected through the rest of this fiscal year. Prop C (sales tax) revenues have arrived higher than expected,” Malone said. “Much of the revenue at this point in the fiscal year is coming from revenues that were already collected at the state level.
State transportation categorical payment will be fully funded for the first time since 1991, he added.
“We know that transportation will be fully funded at 75 percent of 100 percent of total costs for the first time since 1991,” Malone said. “The legislative session ended this week so we will be receiving updates on expected FY23 revenues in the next few weeks to help us finalize the FY23 budget.”
The budget includes a $1,750 increase to the base salary for teachers in addition to vertical movement on the salary schedule,” he noted, adding the base salary will be $37,750 for teachers next year.
Master’s year one and education specialist year one columns will bump to $1,100, with the same columns bumping to $1,100 at year 20.
“The budget also includes an increase in substitute teacher pay to $100 per day, an increase to $80 per daily route for bus drivers and an increase of 6.8 percent for staff health insurance premiums,” Malone said, noting the budget also includes funds for a new school bus and a new post-secondary advisor at the high school.
In his legislative update, Malone noted the General Assembly was expected to vote on several education related bills late in the last week of the session.
The bills range from funding for FY23 to a host of other topics including a mandatory reading intervention bill with almost 30 amendments that designates the second week in April as Holocaust Education Week; requirement for schools to establish a state-approved gifted program if 3 percent or more of the students are identified as gifted; and expand the current licensing program for the visiting scholars teacher certification by allowing individuals to obtain a certification to teach if they are employed by a district as part of an initiative designed to fill vacant positions in hard to fill areas.
Also included is language added to amend the critical shortage provisions and permits retired teachers to work full time up to four years for a school district without losing their retirement benefits; expand the criteria for career ladder admission and stage achievement; establish a “Get the Lead Out of School Drinking Water Act” to provide drinking water with a lead concentration below five parts per billion.
“Another bill, HB 1552, expands charter funding and virtual instruction,” he added.
In other business, the board approved the Continuous School Improvement Plan updated to MSIP6 standards.
“Every five years DESE initiates a new Missouri School Improvement Plan cycle. This August begins the new cycle termed MSIP6 for the sixth cycle of MSIP,” Malone explained. “Our new Continuous School Improvement Plan, or CSIP Plan follows the expectations established in the new MSIP6 document.
“The MSIP6 standards include leadership, effective teaching and learning, collaborative climate and culture, data-based decision making, alignment of standards, curriculum and assessment, and equity and access.”
The board approved the 2022-2023 teacher salary schedule and classified salary schedule, as presented.
They also hired classified staff and summer maintenance staff, as presented.
The board hired the following staff as presented:
Cody Ash, PHS special education teacher; Liz Frankenbach, PHS special education teacher; Tanner Adams, PHS social studies teacher; Steven Walker, PHS art teacher; Kaitlin Hopke, PHS post-secondary advisor; Jeremy Worcester, district technology director; Sara Freels, PHS Key Club sponsor; Katy Fuqua, junior class sponsor; Alicia Carper, Student Council sponsor; and Carla Lotz, sophomore class sponsor.
The board accepted the following resignations as presented:
Katy Fuqua, Key Club sponsor; Aron Knoche, Student Council sponsor; Lex Meyers, MS girls basketball coach; and Jessica Lindahl, sixth grade science teacher.
Malone noted the district is still looking to fill its sixth grade science position and a few coaching spots as well.
The board approved the updated sub list, as presented.
In addition, the board
• heard the annual report on district health services from Jennifer Jones;
• approved MSBA policy updates 2022A; and
• heard a report on the MSBA Regional meeting held in Kirksville.