The Luther School Board has five members again. Steven Broudy who won the District One seat by 40 votes in an election just last week read his oath of office tonight right before casting his first vote.
His first vote was to approve the election of Matt Mohr as president, Sherri Anderson as vice president and Ray Stanfield as clerk. A motion by Charles DeFuria to nominate Broudy as board president to demonstrate “new leadership” failed to a get a second.
The next vote of the night, approved without comment, was the “consent agenda” of approximately $152,000 in bills, some dated back to July of last year. After the meeting, Superintendent Sheldon Buxton confirmed these bills will be paid and said some of them have lingered because of cash flow issues and a lack of reserve funds. The bills to be paid include the water bill for the Town of Luther, a $12,000 bill to OG&E, $6,000 to ONG and outstanding invoices for doormat service, the bus mechanic, phone service, Xerox Corporation for copier service and $546 bill to rekey the Pre-K building and Dean of Student’s Office.
Dr. Buxton presented a proposal reflecting possible cuts for the 2016-17 school year that were compiled from an in-house Task Force of principals and the directors of maintenance and food service.
Teaching staff reductions
- Early Childhood Program to a half-day with no transportation. Savings: $60,000
- Eliminate full-time substitute teacher positions. Savings: $20,000
- Eliminate Alternative Education Program. Savings: $30,000
- Eliminate Driver’s Education Program. Savings: $2,500
- Cut IT position to half-time. Savings: $17,000
- Remove ten-day allowance for teacher professional development. Savings: $2,500
- Cut four full-time positions through attrition or retirements. Savings: $120,000
Non-Certified Staff Reductions
- Eliminate three positions in cafeteria, maintenance and transportation. Savings: $44,000
- Reduction of three full-time aides. Savings: $36,000
- Reduce contract labor in transportation and ground maintenance. Savings $41,000
- Cut activity hours for evening activities. Savings: $10,000
- Eliminate one bus route and liquidate one bus. Savings: $10,000
- Make activity fund accounts pay for extra-curricular trips. Savings: $15,000
TOTAL PROJECTED SAVINGS: $408,000
Dr. Buxton said public input is welcome before the board considers these cuts at the March 14 meeting. In public comments, Jane Martin presented her own proposed cuts of $900,000 that include nearly a half-million dollars in personnel reductions. See her comments here.
“It is better to over-reduce staff than to undercut what needs to be done,” said Martin and predicted more state cuts of up to 15% could be coming soon to which Dr. Buxton agreed.
In other business, the board approved the hiring of Michael Voss as the lay coach for boy’s baseball and after an executive sessions, unanimously voted to continue re-employment for Elementary Principal Sheila Wilson and Middle School Principal Barry Gunn.
The board voted to advertise for a high school principal immediately. Chairman Mohr complimented Interim Principal Shawn Meek for his service in the role this semester.