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October 17th, 2019

10 7 19 usd 480 recapStudents from Meadowlark Elementary School present their project-based learning projects to members of the USD 480 school board during the board’s most recent meeting Monday evening. Many different types of projects were shown to the board members. L&T photo/Elly GrimmELLY GRIMM • Leader & Times


After a presentation from students and teachers from Meadowlark Elementary School, the USD 480 school board made it short and sweet during its most recent meeting Monday evening. 

Early in the meeting for the board was the report from USD 480 Director of Operations Chad Mease. 

“With performance contracting, the current expected completion date is tentatively set for Nov. 25, and that’s to finish up the last installations, there are some small last things in all of that, They’re replacing the remaining condenser unit at Cottonwood Elementary on the gym, the VAV box replacement  we’ve been talking about for quite some time is expected to start the week of Oct. 28 – the original plans included replacing 37 VAV boxes, but that has increased to 88,” Mease said. “With the LHS boiler replacement, the new boiler is installed and we’re finishing up some of the installation pieces right now, and we’re expecting someone out there later this week for the startup. With the proposed land donation we talked about a month ago, we are waiting to hear back from the City regarding potentially swapping that property adjacent to MacArthur. And then with South Middle School, the transaction with the City of Liberal has been finalized and all utilities have been transferred over as of earlier this month.”

The board then moved on to new business, starting with revisiting discussion of additional coaches to the middle school wrestling teams. This was a major topic at the board’s Sept. 23 meeting. Ultimately, the board voted 6-0 (with board member Nick Hatcher absent) to approve the additional coaches. After the vote there were a couple quick questions regarding the coach-to-athlete ratio. 

“Mrs. Hickert told me she would prefer that you, as the board, either discuss this in a workshop, refer it to the committee and bring it back, or whatever you decide,” USD 480 Director of Business Jerry Clay said. “That’s the direction she would like to see as far as that.”

“We need to make the decision before spring so there’s time to properly get with these people and make sure everything is as it should be,” board member Alan Brown added.

After that discussion, the board then moved on to discussion of new courses for Seymour Rogers Middle School. Ultimately, the board voted 6-0 (with Hatcher absent) to approve the list of new courses, which includes Civics, Current Events, FACS 3, Industrial Technology, Project-Based Learning, Strings, and World Geography. After that vote, the board then heard from USD 480 Director of Technology Rusty Tuman regarding new wireless microphones. The bid included five Shure ULXD4Q G50 Quad Digital Wireless Receivers; two Shure ULXD4D G50 Dual Digital Wireless Receivers; 18 Shure ULXD1 G50 Digital Body Pack Transmitters; and 14 Shure ULXD2 G50 Digital HH SM58 Transmitters, with installation to be included. Ultimately, the board voted 6-0 (with Hatcher absent) to approve the purchase. 

“So what’s wrong with the ones now that these will be replacing?” Brown asked. 

“They shouldn’t be used, they’re just obsolete now,” Tuman said. “We could look into reselling them, but they’d remain on the 600mHz channel, which will be unusable by this time next year, but reselling them is something we can look into. But there’s no way to change the frequency. And the reason we’re asking for as many as we are is so we can have some backups if they’re needed, or maybe there will be a large group needing them.”

For the final new business item, the board discussed pest control and ultimately approved the bid from Davis Pest Control in the amount of $12,890 by a margin of 5-0, with Hatcher absent and board member Travis Combs not present at the vote. The meeting was adjourned at 7:18 p.m. 

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