BB School Board Hosts July Work Session

BROKEN BOW—Amidst mid-summer celebrations, the Broken Bow School Board is preparing for the upcoming school year.

During Monday night’s work session (click here for agenda) newly hired Assistant Principal/Activities Director Jeff Ellis ended his first official day with Broken Bow Public Schools (BBPS) with the work session and discussion of admission prices. He and Superintendent Darren Tobey recommended instituting a $35 student activity fee in lieu of an activity pass. An official vote will be taken at the July regular meeting.

Ellis said staff members are working on laminated passes to be issued and for people to show them in order to get into activities. Tobey recommended getting rid of charging for senior citizen passes. In previous years, Tobey said roughly $1,000 was collected from senior citizen passes.

“I think, because of what’s happened the last couple years, it would be great for our school to give out senior citizen passes and allow those people to come into our school and generate some interest back into our school,” Tobey said.

Previous Admission Prices for Varsity Activities:
$6 for adults
$5 for students
$200 family
$70 adult
$35 student
$55 senior

Tobey recommended keeping substitute rates the same for next year at $100 for full days and $50 for half days. Approximately $62,000 was spent last year on hiring substitute teachers.

The board discussed employee and activities handbooks. Jeff Ellis recommends combining the middle and high school activities handbooks. A conversation about athletic practice, facility usage, and club sports scheduling ensued but no decisions were made.

The school currently has two charter buses and seven yellow buses to cover regular routes and activities. The board talked about trading in the charter buses for a newer, used charter and a flat-nose yellow bus. The concerns remain to be storage of equipment for activities and that one of the current charter buses keeps breaking down.

Board members expressed the desire to receive additional bids for painting, but it reviewed two quotes for activity building gutters and one bid for paint. Funds for updating the activities building will come out of the building fund, according to Tobey.

Kim Jonas said new curriculum has already been ordered, but the board needs to officially vote on it later in July. Administration is also looking at updating the social studies curriculum; current elementary books are 13 years old and they want to get everyone caught up. Funds would come from the instructional depreciation account.

Budget decisions are right around the corner and Mr. Tobey gave the board a breakdown of numbers based on a one, two, and three percent valuation increase. Assessed valuations should be available by mid to late August. Tobey said the current proposed budget is almost identical to last year’s at $10.99 million but the board is expecting to spend $10.7 million.

“Those numbers are almost identical to what we asked for last year,” Tobey said.

The work session concluded with a discussion of the Super Kids Club after school and summer programs. During the school year, the Central Plains Center for Services (CPCS) receives a grant to run the program and Broken Bow Schools simply provide the space. After an incident in which the summer program left behind a kid at the pool earlier this summer, talks of shutting down the program ensued.

Kim Jonas said about 60 kids are in the summer care program and the community needs it. She said the program has grown but the procedures have not grown with it. According to Mr. Tobey, CPCS has approached BBPS about running the program but that CPCS would continue to fund it, at least for the next year. Board members and administration discussed the need in the community but the liability of the school and question of things changing in the future as far as funding is concerned.

The work session adjourned at 9:52 p.m. and the next school board meeting is scheduled for later in July.