District to save money without a primary electionWORTHINGTON — The District 518 Board of Education opted against a primary election this year, meaning all candidates who file will be on the ballot in the November election.
By: Kari Lucin, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — The District 518 Board of Education opted against a primary election this year, meaning all candidates who file will be on the ballot in the November election.
“I don’t see a reason to hold it,” said board member Lowell Nystrom. “It would save us a couple thousand dollars.”
Usually, schools have a primary if the number of candidates is more than twice the number of positions.
Superintendent John Landgaard estimated $3,500 would be saved by not having a primary election.
Of the five school board seats up for grabs in November, four have four-year terms. The fifth, held by board appointee Brad Shaffer since Paul Langseth’s resignation in August, has a two-year term.
The board will set the filing dates at a future meeting in June or July in order to conform with state election regulations, but the opening filing day will be in August.
Because the district will not have a primary, and Nobles County and the City of Worthington are anticipated to have a primary for their elections, the city and county filing deadlines will be different from the school board deadlines.
In other business Tuesday, the board:
* Recognized the following teachers and administrators for becoming tenured: Paul Besel, Michelle Brunk, Laurie Dahlquist, Stacy Grothe, Angela Meyer, Jenalee Morales and Paula Stock.
* Approved the retirements of Darlene Iverson as Prairie Elementary cook and Pat Probst as administrative assistant at the district office.
The board also approved the resignations of Andrew Braun as Class II custodian at Worthington Middle School, Lisa Nath as special education teacher at WMS, Rebecca Schultz as first-grade teacher at Prairie Elementary, Kim Anderson as speech language pathologist, Stacy Huisman as yearbook advisor at Worthington Middle School (WMS) and Chris Manitz as junior prom advisor for Worthington High School (WHS).
* Approved the employment of Keith Fleming as coordinator at the Area Learning Center (ALC).
The board also approved the employment of Denis Heemskerk as Class I custodian at WMS, Kathy Craun as gifted and talented coordinator at WMS, Aileen Gonzalez as long-term program aide at the Nobles County Integration Collaborative, Gillian Giebner as WHS English teacher, Cory Smidt at physical education/health teacher at WMS, Jessica Hogan as physical education/health teacher at WMS and Pam Westendorf as summer school secretary at the Area Learning Center.
* Accepted donations from SW Minnesota Private Industry Council for transition programming and ALC curriculum, SW Foundation for ECI visions grant and Prairie Parent Group for Accelerated Reader testing.
* Approved the reduction of one computer tech paraprofessional position.
* Approved a three-year environmental management service proposal from MacNeil Environmental, Inc. for $7,500 next school year, $7,725 the year after and $7,950 in 2010-2011.
* Approved a cooperative agreement for girls’ hockey with Okoboji. The agreement will not bump the school into a different class.
* Reduced two coordinator positions at community education, one for Beth Frederickson from full-time to .85 full-time equivalent and for Rhonda Brandt from full-time to .7 full-time equivalent.
* Approved the purchase of 50 Smart Boards for $60,500, a new e-mail server and two server racks.
* Agreed to replace the gym lights at the high school. Echo Electrical Supply’s fixtures will cost $9,895.96, and Worthington Electric will install them for $3,120.
* Approved a contract settlement for the Custodial Association of Worthington for a salary and benefit increase of 3.45 percent for 2008-2009 and 3.46 percent for 2009-2010.
The board also approved a contract with the Secretarial Association of Worthington for 3.48 percent in 2008-2009 and 3.44 percent in 2009-2010.
A contract with the Worthington Paraprofessionals Association was approved for a total package increase of 3.53 percent for the 2008-2009 school year and 3.55 percent for the 2009-20010 school year.
The board approved a contract settlement for the Administrative Office Staff for a salary and benefit increase of 3.28 percent in 2008-2009 and 3.19 percent in 2009-2010.
* Decided to allow teachers two different pay schedule options, one for 20 pay periods in a year and another for 26 pay periods in a year.