Weather Forecast


School board approves purchase of long-distance learning equipment

WORTHINGTON -- The District 518 Board of Education approved the purchase of long-distance learning equipment for a new high school nursing course which will be introduced during the fourth term of this school year.

Students who complete the course will be certified nursing assistants (CNA), said Superintendent John Landgaard.

"What the equipment will allow us to do is access courses that are being offered by the service co-op (Southwest/West Central Service Cooperative)," Landgaard explained. "It would also allow us to access coursework that they are teaching in other school districts."

There will be a cost associated with accessing material from the other school districts.

"At least we'll have the equipment because this district has not had it for a long time," Landgaard continued, adding the technology cost is estimated at $14,000.

The approval of the equipment purchase stems from a matching grant application submitted by the school district's media specialist, Maggie Kraemer. The grant will provide the school district with an additional piece of equipment for the upcoming nursing program. Money from the district's general fund or reserve capital fund will be used to purchase the distance learning equipment.

"It's nice to see more courses being added so that when students graduate, they can seek employment," said board member Scott Rosenberg. "One course that was brought to my attention that could be added in the future is some type of personal finance course so kids know how to manage their check books."

Board member Steve Schnieder explained the school does offer a related course but "maybe more kids should be made aware of the course."

In other news, board members:

* Approved the 2013 fiscal year revenue budget of $329,260 for the Nobles County Integration Collaborative. In addition, board members also approved the revised plan for the collaborative.

"The plan addresses current programs and adjustments like some funding that can no longer be used for adult programs," Landgaard said.

* Approved a capital outlay request. Landgaard explained that the initial request for capital outlay was $4,200 over-budget -- an amount which would be taken out of the school district's reserve capital fund. After making several changes, including reducing the request for technology equipment, Landgaard said that the amount requested for capital outlay projects is about $1,300 over the budget of $440,000.

* Approved expulsions of two middle school students. The first student was expelled for behavior related to an inappropriate substance, while the other student expulsion was for possession of a "weapon look-alike," Landgaard said. Both students will be allowed to return to school next fall.

* Approved resignations of Janey Haren as girls softball coach with the middle school, Jay Scheidt as ninth- grade baseball coach with the high school, and Gillian Singler as play director for the high school, effective immediately.

* Approved the resignation of Jose Ortiz Flores as ESL assistant with the middle school EDGE effective Dec. 23, 2011.

* Approved retirements of Jerry Fiola as director of community education effective June, 30, 2012, Sandra Ahlberg as fourth-grade teacher at Prairie Elementary, Peggy Herrig as speech language pathologist at Prairie Elementary, and Joyce Soderholm as paraprofessional at Prairie Elementary, effective at the end of the 2011-2012 school year.

* Approved employments of Shelley Stofferan as kindergarten teacher with the EDGE program, Amber Taarud as enrichment instructor with the EDGE program, Virginia Hibma as ESL assistant with the middle school, Jessica Larson as special education paraprofessional for Setting IV at the middle school, Megan Burnham as 0.44 full-time employee Evening Early Childhood Teacher for Even Start, Nohemi Noerenburg as program assistant with the EDGE program, Ben Derynck as golf coach at the middle school, Kari Pierson as instructor for the EDGE program, Sarah Peterson as long-term eighth-grade English teacher substitute, Tearrany Bixbu as program assistant for the EDGE program, and Amber Raarud as special education paraprofessional Class II at the middle school.

* Approved a donation acceptance for January from Box Tops for Education at Prairie Elementary.

Daily Globe Reporter Ana Anthony can be reached at 376-7321.