Board approves $578,650 Shop building project

By Tim Huether

The Bennett County School Board reviewed three bids for the proposed new shop building at the high school, accepting the low bid of $578,650 from Summitt Contracting of Platte. All board members voted in favor with Tiffany Petrak not present.

The other bids on the 3,000 square foot steel building were: 1st Dakota Enterprise of Ft. Pierre, $624,000; Scull Construction of Rapid City, $632,400.

Board chairman Mike Olson reported on his trip to Washington, D.C., where he attended the National Association of Federally Impacted Schools meeting. Olson said they were informed on the history of impact aid and he learned a lot about impact aid

Superintendent Stacy Halverson updated the board on school items, including the impact aid payments for 2016 and the fall of 2017 and summer of 2017. She said the proposed cuts to education may range from 10-15 percent. She said Senators Thune and Rounds are big supporters of impact aid and education.

Halverson said the date for Homecoming for the 2017-18 school year is Sept. 22, with the opponent likely Lead-Deadwood.

Other upcoming activities include: Winter Athletic Banquet, March 23; Regional Science Fair, March 24; High School Play March 31 and April 1; Prom April 8, High School Showcase April 10; Bennett County Track Meet April 13; Bennett County Jr. High Track Meet April 20; Makeup snow day April 21.

Board member Kevin Hodson said he heard the state is looking at increasing education spending by .3 percent and Halverson said that was correct.

Jr. High Principal and Title Director Belinda Ready said Bingo for Books is Thursday, March 30, and a Parent meeting will be April 5 at 12:30 and 6 p.m. On April 20, there will be a Jr. High Math Game Night from 6-7 p.m.

She said the national conference on federal programs was very good with lots of new information.

Ready reported the Jr. High Science Fair went very well and the Regional Science Fair is this Friday in Martin. She said Braden Louden qualified for the State Geography Bee in Aberdeen.

High School Principal Nick Redden said they are planning for the Smarter Balanced testing set for March 28 and 30. The 9th grade will be taking the PSAT April 4 and the 10th grade April 5.

He said the seniors scored well on the National Career Readiness Certificates. 

High school track has 21 participants out and Jr. High has 17. High School Club Baseball has 24 on the squad and a few players are also doing track. The first baseball game is April 2 at Winner, the first track meet is in Winner April 1 and the Jr. High travels to Kadoka April 4 for a track meet.

The Winter Athletic Banquet is set for 6:30 on Thursday.

The annual Man Pageant was held with James Nelson taking the title of Mr. BCHS, Adam Hahn as the first runner up and Elwood Cuny earned Mr. Congeniality.

Martin Grade School Principal Amie Kuxhaus said the grade school hosted a Language Arts and Social Studies Curriculum and Showcase Night with a decent attendance, but said they need to look at how to make it better for next year.

On March 24, the staff will attend day four of the CORE reading training and March 28 is the K-3 music concert. Kindergarten Round-up will be scheduled for the first part of May.

Jolene Robinson reported that the school audit went well. She said eight years ago they were told they would never have an audit with no findings, but they got one! The board congratulated her and co-business manager Karen Coyle for an outstanding job. 

The board approved updates to the following school board policies, getting them in compliance with federal and state laws: Board Policy - DID, Inventories; EEADA, Use of Private Vehicles; DP, Change to GCBCC, Tax Sheltered Annuity Program; DJC, Bidding Requirements with addition of DQ, Davis-Bacon Act Procedures.

The board approved a three year contract for superintendent Stacy Halverson for the years 2017-18; 2018-19; 2019-20.

The board approved administrative contracts for the 2017-18 school year for: Belinda Ready, Jr. High Principal and Title I Director; Nick Redden, Secondary Principal; Amie Kuxhaus, Elementary Principal; Jolene Robinson, Co-Business Manager; Karen Coyle, Co-Business Manager; Bob Toczek, Directory of Transportation and Plant Operations; Ken Donovan, Director of Construction and Maintenance Operations.

The board accepted the resignation of Julie Cottier, custodian, effective Feb. 22, 2017.

The board accepted the retirement of Teresa Risse, teacher, after 33 years of service to the Bennett County School District, at the end of the 2016-17 school year. 

The board approved the surplus of technology items, many that no longer are in working order.

The board approved transferring $62,500 from the General Fund to Special Education and $62,500 from Impact Aid to Special Education.

The board approved offering certified contracts for the 2017-18 school year and non-certified contracts for the 2017-18 school year. 

The board approved moving the April board meeting from April 17 to Tuesday, April 18.

502 Second Avenue, Martin, SD 57551 • 605-685-6866 •