Summary of June 7, 2021 Board of Education meeting

Board of Education Meeting Notes

JUNCTION CITY, Kan. — Geary County Schools USD 475 Board of Education held a meeting on Monday at the Mary E. Devin Center for Educational Support.

The meeting began with the approval of the Consent Agenda and followed with the board member’s recessing to three back-to-back executive sessions to discuss non-elected personnel.

After returning to Open Session, the members heard from Junction City High School (JCHS) Athletic Director Matt Westerhaus and a representative from St. Francis Xavier Catholic School to discuss a cooperative agreement between the two high schools that would allow St. Francis Xavier students to participate on JCHS sports teams. The board approved the agreement for only football.

The board continued, approving the purchase of 1,050 Microsoft 365 A5 licenses for approximately $120,330 annually, as presented by the district’s Chief Information Officer Karl DeArmond. This is the best option for the school, according to DeArmond, and allows the students and staff to continue utilizing these tools daily.

Chief Operations Officer David Wild then presented to the board an Intergovernmental Support Agreement (IGSA) with the Department of the Army for Building Demolition, which would enable Public Works, Fort Riley to demolish the former Jefferson Elementary and Fort Riley Elementary. This agreement supports Fort Riley by lowering the demolition rate, and Geary County Schools USD 475 by providing free use of the Fort Riley construction debris landfill with an estimated lower cost for the demolition of Jefferson Elementary. Both schools plan to be demolished this fall, and Fort Riley will pay the district an 8% administrative fee, estimated at $42,000, for the effort. The board approved this agreement.

Wild also presented to the board the replacement of the playgrounds as Eisenhower and Sheridan Elementary Schools by Noah’s Park and Playgrounds, one of the four firms interested in the work. The board approved contracting with the entity for this project.

Wild also presented to the board a contract to enter with First Transportation Solutions to provide a district transportation efficiency study to help the district with its’ procurement effort. This study would focus on bus routing plans, fleet use maximization, financial and management recommendations, labor and staffing considerations, enrollment opinions, contracting versus in-house performance options, and school boundary recommendations. The results of the study will be used to develop requirements when acquiring district transportation services for the fiscal year 2023. The board approved this contract.

Wild also asked the board to approve an allocation of Heavily Impacted Aid funds to go toward purchasing additional items for the new JCHS, which include components necessary for the upgrade of radio systems, SafeDefend, graphics package, completion of the visitor’s ticket booth, shop area fencing, two additional tennis courts, turf outside the weight room, a parking lot near the football stadium, remaining furniture items and stadium entrance pavers. The board approved buying down the list of items to the level afforded by the additional allocation of funds.

The district’s Superintendent Dr. Reginald Eggleston then asked the board to approve a stipend for secondary sites (Junction City Middle School, Fort Riley Middle School, and Junction City High School) of $1,500 for overseeing summer school. This is like the stipend the board approved on May 20 for the elementary principals hosting summer school. The board approved the stipend for secondary schools.

Wild presented to the board for discussion an update regarding the continuation of transportation services with its current providers, Junction City Transportation Company and B&B Busing. The joint proposal from the two companies provides three options for the district to consider:

  1. One-Year Contract: A proposal that equates to a 15% increase over current contract pricing. No fleet upgrade other than normal replacement (lenders will not approve upgrades for a one-year contract).
  2. Three-Year Contract: Same 15% increase with a programmed annual rate increase of 2.75%. Fleet improvement reflecting no vehicle older than 12 years and an average of 10 years.
  3. Five-Year Contract: 15% increase with a programmed annual rate increase of 2.75%. Fleet improvement reflecting no vehicle older than 11 years and an average age of nine years.

No action was taken by the board for this item.

Dr. Eggleston presented to the board the current vacancies in the district. Then, the members recessed to executive session to discuss non-elected personnel before adjourning.

The full meeting can be viewed on the the Geary County Schools USD 475 YouTube page.

The board will hold their next meeting on Thursday, June 17 at 5:30 p.m., which will also be live-streamed on the YouTube page.

For inquiries, please contact Lindley Lund, Marketing and Media Specialist for Geary County Schools USD 475, at lindleylund@usd475.org.