The Fieldcrest Board of Education conducted their monthly board meeting Wednesday nightly interactively through Zoom. Next month's meeting, however, will be conducted in person at the Fieldcrest Middle School.
The board approved the contract with the FEA (Fieldcrest Education Association). Fieldcrest Superintendent Dr. Kari Rockwell said learned much about the history of Fieldcrest during FEA negotiations and my goal is to support all staff as the better we treat staff, the better they can be for students. Board President Mykin Bernardi thanked everyone for their hard work and board member Kimberly McKay said the negotiations went very smoothly. Details of the contract can be viewed at this link.
The board also approved the Non-FEA Salaries which included the same percentage increase as FEA salary increases. Those salaries can be viewed at this link.
In personnel action, the board approved the extra duty assignment of Isaiah Tubbs as Girls Basketball Assistant, and accepted the resignations of Eileen Schubbe, Intermediate TA, and Cody Miles, TA and Bus driver, who is moving to a Health/PE Teaching position.
The board approved the bid language for the replacement of windows in the north wall of the Middle School gym in Wenona, approved the bid language for asbestos abatement at the Middle School, and approved the Construction Manager contract for the upcoming building project. The board also approved the application to IDOT for declaration of a safety hazardous for students who must walk from the south end of Wenona to the Middle School about 1 mile north. That path has areas of no sidewalk which makes walking unsafe.
In her administrator's report, Dr. Rockwell said she was proud of how the Fieldcrest staff responded during the school shut down. She said many teachers went beyond the call of duty to help students who required extra help. She said the phase 2 of the COVID-19 recovery will allow sports to resume with restrictions to minimize interpersonal contact such as not sharing water bottles.
Dr. Rockwell said graduation exercises will be conducted July 10th at the Veterans Park football field. The graduates will be seated in the bleachers while the family members will be seated on the football field. There will be a maximum of 10 family members per graduate and each family will be separated from other families. She is requesting that families stay in their areas and not mingle with other families.
Dr. Rockwell said there will be a meeting on July 7 to discuss the findings of the survey on parents concerns on resuming school this fall. 330 responses were received which represented over 550 students. She said large gatherings and transportation will be the main topics to be addressed.
Dr. Rockwell and the board members were supportive of the State's guidance on returning to school this fall. Dr. Rockwell said all students and staff will be required to wear face coverings which include masks, shields, and potentially other items that will be discussed.
Board member Heather McKay said she supports the State's guidance 100% and thinks it is important to bring kids back to school.
Board member Jordan Meyer said she has faith in the Fieldcrest staff to get through this together.
Board member Elizabeth Palm said she supports the return of school this fall because of her concern for the students who don't have access to the internet and would fall further behind if onsite schooling didn't resume.
Board member Kimberly McKay said she thinks the primary students will adapt better than the high school students.
An update on the E-Rate reimbursement for the wireless and internet upgrade project was discussed at the end of the meeting. Fieldcrest Technology Director Matt Wendling said the project is completed and the internet is working much better now. He said over 100 access points and 20 switches were installed in addition to the fiber optic connections. He said around $160,000 was spent on the upgrade and the school should expect a reimbursement check of $90,000 from the E-Rate program by September at the latest.