Retired educator sets the tone for meeting|
|Retired educator John Cerny had some words of advice for members of the Antigo school district Tuesday.|
“Board members, be respectful of teachers. Teachers be respectful of board members and everyone, be respectful of your community,” Cerny said. “We have a good thing here.”
Cerny, who still works as a substitute teacher after a lifetime in education, spoke to the board before it moved into regular agenda items, concisely stating what many in the district have been thinking following recent acrimonious sessions that led, in one instance, to a closed meeting devoted to a review of ethics.
In his remarks, made before about 40 teachers, parents and district officials in the high school media tech room, Cerny noted that the animosity in the community “is at such a point that it is affecting education.”
He stressed the continued ability of students in the district to receive an outstanding education, using his own four children as examples.
“I am a supporter of the Antigo district. The teachers are outstanding. The board, in the past, has been outstanding,” he said, but recent committee meetings that included barbed remarks at educators were disappointing.
The board must respect the classroom teachers, he said, stressing “these are good people.”
His remarks brought extended applause.
The nine-member board, for the most part, moved through much of the agenda smoothly, led by a decision to set a Sept. 10 date for a special meeting with the district’s FORWARD Task Force to discuss recommendations to meet district building and financial needs the group formulated after months of study.
Joe Kretz, who chairs the Operations Committee, said that the board should lean toward solving the elementary school dilemma and urged speed in taking up the task force proposals.
“The longer we wait, the more of a problem it is going to be to take the recommendations we received and do something with them,” Kretz said. “We want to get it going soon.”
The special session will be held at 7 p.m. in the media tech room at the high school.
In personnel matters, the board unanimously agreed to increase the pay of second and third year instructors to the same level as first year teachers, who receive more money due to changes in the salary structure.
All will now received $35,021 annually. The second and third year teachers had been getting a$33,339.
Several staff changes were also inked.
—Amy Dahms, dean of students/instructional technology coordinator.
—Anita Mattek, associate principal at the high school.
—Diane Preboski, instructor at West Elementary.
—Emily Koszarek and Rochelle Carani, part-time special education instructional assistants at the Middle School.
—and Andrianna Hintz, Middle School math.
It also accepted the retirement of Timothy Zaverousky as Middle School custodian and designated Ashley Darr as coordinator of the Middle School’s AIMS program, a virtual school offering.
With the hammers to begin banging at the high school construction class within weeks, the board accepted a series of bids for materials to get the work rolling. They included Menards, $16,400 for building materials and $2,557 for cabinets and countertops; Heinzen Plumbing & Heating, $3,398 for plumbing supplies; Jerry Thomae Electric Center, $4,947 for electrical supplies; Wilhelm Lumber, $5,585 for windows and doors; and VanderKoy Bros., $4,830 for hanging, taping and spraying drywall.
Other bids accepted included Stibbe Excavating for snow-plowing and removal, based on hourly rates for various pieces of equipment; Pieper Electric, $26,618 for video intercoms at the elementary schools; Tierney Brothers, $6,132 for three smartboards for the Middle School; and Compugen Finance, $11,565 for 30 refurbished laptop computers, with three-year warranties, for the Middle School’s AIMS program.
The board also approved a request from parents who would like to make improvements to the freshmen baseball diamond across from the high school. Plans include installing a used scoreboard, concession stand, trees and padding, all at no cost to the district.
John Cerny, a retired educator, addressed the school board Tuesday, urging respect between the board, teachers and community at-large.
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