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Pierce City School Board hears idea promoting FFA program

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Pierce City R-6 Board of Education heard presentations from the Pierce City High School FFA advisor and from a group hoping to preserve the district's middle school building during the board's Dec. 17 meeting.

According to Erin Boursheski, the Pierce City FFA advisory group met last week to discuss the possibility of forming a committee to help Pierce City's FFA chapter. The committee would consist of 12 local business owners and area farmers.

"The FFA students are willing to do whatever they can to help the bond issues," said Boursheski. "They are always involved with the community."

According to Boursheski, some of the recent community efforts provided by FFA and ag students included collecting canned goods for the needy and raking leaves for elderly citizens.

"We need to showcase what FFA students are doing in the community for FFA awareness and to show FFA's need for a building," said Boursheski.

Turning the board's attention to the middle school building, Bill Hart with the Missouri Alliance for Historic Preservation (MAHP) provided a presentation on behalf of Historic Pierce City (HPC).

According to Hart, MAHP is a non-profit organization that consists of a network of individuals, organizations and preservation commissions throughout Missouri that are united in efforts to preserve historic resources in Missouri.

"The Pierce City Middle School building has been nominated to the most endangered historic site (list)," said Hart.

Hart said MAHP offers assistance to help preserve historic sites through grant programs. According to Hart, he has advised the HPC group to apply for such a grant and complete a study of the middle school building, which would include a structural report of the facility.

"You have a valuable building," said HPC member Jay Bierkortte. "The matter should not be taken lightly."

According to Bierkortte, HPC supports school improvements but stands firm on its desire to protect and keep the middle school building.

According to MAHP, the building has been listed as one of the top 10 most endangered sites in Missouri in 2009.

In regard to the bond issue proposal, which will be placed on the ballot in the April 2010 election, Superintendent Russ Moreland said he has been receiving a lot of positive feedback.

"More people want to get involved to help promote the bond issue," said Moreland.

Boursheski told board members that based on phone calls, which were made to surrounding areas, "everyone indicated they are in agreement with the District's need for a new vo-ag building."

In addition, Moreland noted the district would likely see an increased number of FFA students if voters approve the new Vo-Ag building.

In other business, the Pierce City School Board:

* Adopted a resolution of participation in the Race to the Top program, which was recommended by DESE as part of the national program to award money to state education agencies to help schools develop and improve.

* Heard the district met all 14 standards of the Annual Performance Report.

* Set revised guidelines for school visitors.

* Heard an update on the school's building project.

The next regular school board meeting is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 28, 2010.

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