USD 411 board discusses facility needs

Staff writer

Preparing for the future of Goessel USD 411 students and meeting their educational needs took top priority Monday at the Board of Education meeting.

“We are actively asking questions to find answers about facility needs,” Superintendent John Fast said. “How can we best prepare our classrooms and the tools we give teachers to equip them for future teaching needs?”

The board is pursuing a bond issue request before Kansas legislature changes potentially shut the doors of school finance in July.

“We are closer to the 40 percent finance level of state aid, higher than we thought previously,” Fast said. “It is very likely this could be revoked. Not a fact, but likely, and we need to be prepared.”

Bond expert Jim Cain, hired by the district to facilitate expenditure and expansion discussions, told the board that a timeline to push through a bond issue is tight. A rough proposal needs to be on the table by the end of December.

Josh Walker from Lloyd Construction presented the board with a rough outline of costs for facility improvements in the agriculture education wing and science lab at the high school, and a certified tornado shelter at the elementary school.

“The good news is that we could be well under our projected $3 million,” Fast said.

Fast said classified teachers and staff will divide into small groups to discuss in-depth educational needs for the district during an inservice Friday.

“We’ve set a special board meeting for 7 p.m. on Oct. 22 to process feedback from staff,” he said.

In other business:

  • Board members approved hiring Travis Duerksen as GHS forensics coach.
  • Principal Scott Boden reported on recent student activities during bullying week and fire prevention week.
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