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Stratford sets hearing on learning center

School board updates blueprints of renovations

October 22, 2012
Billie Shelton ( , The Daily Freeman Journal

STRATFORD - When the Stratford school board met in regular session on Wednesday evening, its agenda included an update on the Martha Simonson courts and the ELC renovation, a review of certified enrollment for this school year, a report on student achievement, and a report on parent meetings and family nights at the school.

Open enrollment in to the district and elementary enrollment have both increased since last year, while open enrollment out and whole grade sharing both show a decrease, according to Supt. Sarah Binder. The final certified enrollment for 2012-13 at Stratford is 168, an increase of 6 since last year. Binder said that the figure continues to go up and down as districts and the Department of Education sort it out.

As of the Oct. 16, work on the Martha Simonson Courts is complete. The fence around the court took longer than anticipated, according to Binder. Work is progressing on a sign for the renovated and resurfaced tennis court, and a dedication ceremony will be held in the spring for the courts that are in memory of long-time Stratford teacher Martha Simonson who passed away suddenly several years ago.

The board reviewed an updated blueprint for the Early Learning Center renovation and made plans for a public hearing on the matter, which will be Wednesday, Oct. 24, at 5 p.m. at the school.

"I don't know if community people will come (to the hearing), but I hope they do because this is very exciting," Binder remarked about the planned expansion of the ELC. "This is very exciting."

Plans are to award the bids in December. Local option sales tax funds will be used for the project.

In another ELC matter, the board reviewed the transition from the monthly payment plan to the payment plan option put into place at their September board meeting. It has gone very well, and every family is current for October. If the family has an outstanding bill, the family has a payment plan.

The Stratford elementary school has again been awarded Paramount School Status for the current school year. It was based on the application process during the 2011-12 school year, according to Binder. Binder said that only one other district in Iowa has earned this status.

Also on Wednesday, the board reviewed the mechanic's report. The bus inspection last month showed no infractions. Acting on a recommendation from the bus mechanic, the board approved replacing the power washer for $3,890. Also approved was the purchase of a used motorized floor cleaner for $2,800. Both purchases will be from physical plant and equipment levy funds.

The board reviewed 28e agreements with Webster City for instrumental music, guidance counselor, teacher librarian, and director of transportation, as well as Hamilton County Public Health for a school nurse.

The next meeting of the school board will be on Wednesday, November 14, a change because of Thanksgiving.



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