By Lindsay Starr Platt, The Belton Journal
The Board of Trustees of Belton Independent School District held a regular meeting on Dec 14, at the Belton ISD Administration Building.
Recognitions for awards were held after the meeting was called to order. The following were award recipients: Lauren Ellis, Noah Henry, Wendy Falsone and Belton Veterinary Clinic.
Lauren Ellis, a junior and representative of Student 2 Student (S2S) at Belton High School (BHS), was chosen to attend the Francis Hesselbein Leadership program in October 2016. Lauren competed against S2S members (sophomores and juniors) from around the world to attend this weeklong event at West Point in New York.
The Military Child Education Coalition established the program in 2006 and chooses up to 12 students to attend this prestigious leadership training. A BHS student has attended every year since 2012.
Noah Henry, a sophomore at Belton High School (BHS), was chosen by USA Swimming to attend the National Select Camp. Each fall, 68 of the top USA Swimming member athletes in the nation, ages 16-14, are chosen based on the SWIMS database of top times. During the camp, swimmers learned about post race recovery, drug and supplement rules, psychological training skills, nutrition, and race strategy. Swimmers also received inspirational talks from National Team members, including swimmer Michael Phelps.
Noah was chosen based on his long course times achieved over the summer at Junior and Senior Nationals. The next step for Noah is to qualify for the National Junior Team Qualifiers for the National Junior Team are comprised of the top six swimmers, ages 18 and under, in each Olympic event.
Noah competed in the Winter Junior National Championships Dec. 9-13 in Austin Patrick Henry is the coach for the Belton High School swim team. Henry was also invited to attend the National Select Camp for a series of educational classes.
In the Big Red Community, partnerships between local businesses and schools create opportunities for students. This is especially true in Belton ISD’s career and technical education programs. Through these partnerships, students graduate from high school better prepared for higher education and careers.
Dr. Travis Respondek and the Belton Veterinary Clinic play a major role in training practicum students for the veterinary technician exams. Students in the vet tech practicum are educated on how to feed, administer medication, and set-up and assistance in surgeries.
On Monday, December 7, 2015, the fifth annual Belton ISD Employee Recipe Baking Contest judging event was held. Wendy Falsone, library aide at Southwest Elementary, was first place winner with her Chocolate Cherry Christmas Mice. Wendy stated that this recipe has been a family favorite for the past 12 years, and she often shares the treat with family, neighbors, and coworkers.
The School Nutrition Department will prepare the Chocolate Cherry Christmas Mice based on Wendy’s recipe and samples will be shared with the Southwest staff.
Dr. Merl Brandon and Sam A. Listi presented a check for Funds for Child Safety Fee/Crossing Guards from the City of Belton. According to Transportation Code, Chapter 502.403, the County Tax Assessor-Collector may collect an additional $1.50 per vehicle registration with the approval of Commissioners Court. The funds must be spent on existing crossing guard programs. If the school district does not have a crossing guard, the funds must be spent on health, nutrition, child abuse prevention and intervention or drug and alcohol abuse prevention.
The check for this year’s allocation for the City of Belton is $21,346.89
Another item on the agenda was presented by Robert Jones to consider, discuss, and take appropriate action regarding other revenues, grants from private sources.
Board approval is required for gifts, grants, or bequests of $10,000 or more in value as outlined by Board Policy CDC (LOCAL). The policy recognizes that there may be issues, responsibilities, or costs to be considered prior to the acceptance of these types of resources.
The Belton Educational Enrichment Foundation (BEEF) has awarded classroom educational grants and paraprofessional grants for continuing education to applicants from campuses totaling $44,419.61 for the 2016 school year. These competitive grants are designed to encourage innovation in instruction and assist paraprofessionals who are enrolled in local colleges and universities. Grant awards range in size from $600 to $12,883.
In addition to the grants already awarded, BEEF is also donating $5,000 to be used for a special district project.
After the meeting was opened for public comments, minutes were approved for November 10, 2015 Long-Range Facilities Planning Committee Meeting and November 16, 2015 Regular Meeting.
Also presented was the Unaudited Financial Report for the month ending November 30, 2015. It has been Board procedure to review and approve the Monthly Financial Report and Investment Report for the District. The financial reports represent the status of revenue and expenditures at the close of the prior month for the General Fund 199, the Child Nutrition Fund 240 & 242, the Capital Outlay Fund 599, and the Debt Service Fund 599. These are unaudited figures. The independent financial audit will be performed for the period ending August 31, 2016.
Texas Early Day Tractor & Engine Association, Inc. made a donation in the amount of $1,500 to the Golf Athletics Activity account. The donation was discussed according Other Revenues of at Least $1,000 but Less than $10,000.
Waste Removal and Disposal Services for RFP #1510-950-120 was posted October 30, 2015 to replace the expiring RFP #1101-905-035 for the district. This contract provides waste removal services for various locations throughout the district. Two vendors (Waste Management of Texas and Progressive Waste Solutions) responded to this proposal and it was determined that Progressive Waste Solutions will be more cost effective and will meet the needs of the district. The cost of the vendors are; Progressive Waste Solutions for $ 5,089.58 a month and Waste Management of Texas for $ 6,282.24 a month The monthly rate does not include additional roll-off containers that are picked up on an as-needed basis or additional collection requests that occur during peak times of the year.
Superintendent Susan Kincannon talked about the Decmber 12, 2015 Elementary and Secondary Academic UIL competitions. Kincannon also presented the highlights of Cultivating Innovative Cultures Conference Part II held at Southwest Airlines.
Jill Ross presented a review and discussion regarding Belton New Tech High School @ Waskow. The campus is in its fifth year of operation. The campus successfully graduated 105 students in June 2015. The purpose of this presentation is to provide the Board of Trustees with an overall update of student successes that continue to occur on the campus. The presentation will follow the five key aspects that make the Waskow campus an Apple Distinguished school: (1) Compelling Evidence of Success, (2) Learning and Teaching, (3) Flexible Learning Environment, (4) Ongoing Professional Development, and (5) Visionary Leadership.
Another topic on the consent agenda was to Consider, Discuss, and Take Appropriate Action Regarding the Employment, Resignation, and Addition of District Employees. The month of December includes the recommendation to hire two teachers and one school nurse. The district has received and accepted three resignations.
Consider, Discuss, and Take Appropriate Action Regarding the 2014-2015 School Year Independent Audit Report
Presenter: Paula Lowe, Pattillo, Brown & Hill, L.L.P.
The Board approved the Patillo, Brown, & Hill, LLP engagement agreement in the spring to conduct the annual financial audit and report their findings for the year ending August 31, 2015. This is the third year the firm has conducted the audit.
The annual financial reports were approved for the year ended August 31, 2015, at a meeting of the Board of Trustees of Belton Independent School District on December 14, 2015.
The next Board of Trustees meeting will be held January 18, 2016.