BROKEN BOW—On Tuesday night the Broken Bow school board and administration discussed the possibility of closing Custer and relocating the preschool to North Park Elementary. The construction project would involve an addition to the north end of the building near the kindergarten classrooms.
Three preschool classrooms, additional sensory rooms, and office space could cost an estimated $1.992 million according to BD Construction.
Superintendent Darren Tobey said at the end of the day the district is trying to save money and become more efficient. Special Education Director Nikki Altig said preschool space within North Park would “allow us to become more efficient in so many aspects.” Administrators said more resources would be available throughout the day.
“Us running a preschool out of a building that’s big enough to house an entire middle school. It just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense,” Tobey said.
Tobey presented estimated savings of $164,425 per year if Custer is closed vs. savings of $158,725 per year if Custer remains open. No decisions were made during Tuesday’s meeting as a variance would need to be obtained from the city. Board president Tom Osmond discussed the possibility of having a public forum before moving forward with any construction project regarding the preschool.
President and Certified Track Builder of Fisher Tracks Sam Fisher appeared before the board to discuss updating the track. He estimated updating the it on top of the current track could cost an estimated $550,000.
Teacher negotiations will be voted on during the February 18 meeting. Mr. Tobey said the next year could consist of an additional $275,000 in raises/insurance with a $600 increase to the base pay. Administration contract renewals and salary increases are pending.
After previous discussions of adding softball to the fall sports agenda, the administration recommended not adding it at this time. Board member Tim Chancellor said the board needs to ask if they are willing to add a sport to either semester at this time. The consensus was that they want to focus on the academic setting and budget at this time and have representatives for softball or others come back in the future as circumstances change over the years.
Tuesday night involved a long discussion of state testing including the MAPS and NSCAS tests and comparing fall and spring proficiency levels.
Mr. Tobey said the board is “making good strides” but there is still much to do.
The board went into executive session at 10 p.m. to discuss pending litigation. A regular school board meeting will be held on Monday, February 18 at 5 p.m.