EDGERTON — The Edgerton Local Schools Board of Education elected Robert Siebenaler to serve as board president for 2021 and Tom Flegal to serve as vice president during its organizational meeting before going into regular session Monday evening. They also agreed to meet at 6 p.m. on the third Monday of every month.
In regular session, Treasurer Bill Blakely reported the district’s current deficit at $190,000 and projected an additional $18,000 shortage in food service funds by the end of the school year, both due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The board approved spending $2,960 to purchase two flag poles for the elementary school from the American Flag Pole Company; $4,294 for annex door locks from Elite Door and Security of Bryan; and accepted the donation of 200 masks from the Edgerton Police Department and Williams County Emergency Management Agency. They also approved three graduation seals to recognize students who have completed 15 hours of community service, participated in one extracurricular club and completed a fine arts credit.
Superintendent Kermit Riehle reported enrollment for January at 578 students, with the entire student body having returned for face-to-face instruction on that morning.
“It’s the right move at this juncture, in accordance with the governor’s guidance, knowing that we will not have to quarantine entire classes,” he said. “We have 44 students in quarantine but only three have tested positive.”
Riehle also said the county health department was scheduled to offer the COVID-19 vaccine to school employees in February. “We did a survey to see who wanted it,” he said. “Forty-eight percent said no and 52% said yes. The no’s were higher than I expected, but there are a lot of unknowns with vaccines.”
The board also discussed long-term capital projects and concluded that a new bus barn should take priority over renovations to the school’s annex building to create additional classrooms and conference rooms. “Space is OK for now; it’s not hurting us,” Riehle said.
He also plans to do minor renovations over the summer, relocating the high school library to improve the STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) lab and accommodate additional equipment.
Elementary Principal Brett Grieser reported caps and gowns had been purchased to support a kindergarten graduation ceremony in May, the Sheriff’s Office Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) officer would be meeting with fifth graders every Monday throughout the year and the school was starting a new “Bulldogs With Ties” program to promote manners and gentlemanly behavior among fourth- to sixth-grade boys.
High School Principal Ben Wilhelm recommended a new electronic SmartPass Digital hall pass monitoring system to support COVID-19 contact tracing.
The board went into executive session at 6:53 p.m. to discuss negotiations and took no action afterward.