Broken Bow School Board Discusses Masks, Stimulus Package, And More At Monday Meeting

BBPS— The Broken Bow Public School Board met on Monday, March 15 for a quick meeting that centered around stimulus money. According to Broken Bow Superintendent Darren Tobey, the school was eligible for $159,000 in the first stimulus package, $459,000 in the second, and is expected to be eligible for around $1M in the most recent package. Tobey noted that if the school applies for those funds they must apply them to places where the school has been impacted by COVID within two years.

Tobey said BBPS has been fortunate because they have not been impacted as other schools have across the country. He also noted while $1M might seem like a lot, Omaha Public Schools could be eligible for up to $1B in federal aid through the most recent stimulus package.

During public comments, questions were brought to the board about how long the mask mandate at the school would stay in effect. Tobey addressed the issue and stated that until the quarantine requirements change, the school will remain with masks. He noted that with the current guidelines, as long as all individuals are wearing a mask, if someone tests positive for COVID-19, only the person who tested has to quarantine and the others can remain in school, even if they are considered a close contact.

He said the school isn’t saying masks are a save all, but if they want to stay in school and keep kids in classes, then they have to follow the rules set by Loup Basin Public Health Department. He also said that the school has not had a COVID incident in over two weeks.

Tobey gave a brief update on the preschool project and said that the weather had him concerned if things would be a mess, but everything looks great and appears to be on schedule. He noted that the drywall would most likely be going up later this week.

The board did vote to accept the resignation of Daniel Thompson and also approved the hiring of Kristin Benjamin. It was also noted that Peg Zieger and Carmen Finney would be retiring at the end of the school year. According to Tobey, Finney has been with BBPS for 24 years.

Also approved were the teacher contract negotiations, with a $36,400 base salary, and the purchase of a 2015 Polaris Ranger at $6,300, after a $600 trade-in on another ATV.

The next BBPS Board meeting will be held on Monday, April 19 at 5:30 PM.