The Purdy R-2 Board of Education approved raises of nearly 4.4 percent for teachers for the 2012-13 year during its June meeting.
Superintendent Jerry Lingo, attending his last meeting prior to his retirement, said incoming superintendent Dr. Steven Chancelor and board secretary Stacey Williams studied the budget and recommended the change as part of the financial plan for the coming year.
The raise represented a $700 increase in the base pay, the first increase in four years, plus an increase in the pay steps for years of service. Board member Ed Mareth calculated that with the step increase and retirement benefits, the raise represented $1,204.55 in additional pay to certified staff.
Each of the principals received increases of $1,000. Non-certified staff, including secretaries and aides, received an increase of $250. Cooks, bus drivers and custodians received an increase of 25 cents per hour.
Lingo said the new salary scale was fairly comparable to other nearby districts.
Board members also passed a budget for the year. Lingo said the plan, calling for projected revenues of nearly $8.3 million and projected spending of $5.7 million was "workable" but may need adjustment through the year. Revenues and spending stayed fairly close to recent years. Lingo said the budget would allow a respectable reserve of 33 percent at year's end.
During the current year, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) raised the funds to be disbursed by 1 percent, resulting in $54,884 more for Purdy. Fewer students attended the Southwest Area Career Center (SWACC) than had been budgeted, representing a savings of more than $12,000. Refinancing the district's bonds reduced the annual payment by $20,000.
Looking at the coming year, four experienced teachers are being replaced by new hires, representing a reduction in the payroll of nearly $30,000. Sarai Glazer is transferring to the school nurse's job, and her old position as an aide will not be refilled, representing a savings of almost $14,500.
The board accepted two resignations at the meeting and decided to combine duties rather than fill the vacancies. Resigning was kindergarten teacher Megan Redshaw, who had 11 years experience in Purdy, and Jacqueline Fuller, the A+ coordinator and a special education instructor, who has taken a position with the Clinton County R-2 District.
The budget anticipated some cost increases, such as $8,117 more in pay and benefits to the incoming superintendent. Board members also anticipated spending $12,600 more for extra duties.
Chancelor said he planned to have elementary school secretary Susan Funkhouser serve as a media consultant, mostly to send out more news to patrons, and to hire a coordinator for the teaching substitutes. Presently three people work with substitutes, duties Chancelor hoped one person could handle.
Funds also go toward the additional boys track coach hired last year, plus paying principal Janet Boys for managing federal programs and paying principal Bob Vice for collecting data for analysis and reports.
Lingo expected the $3,000 decrease in revenue from school lunches to continue after more teachers stopped participating when rates were raised. No longer renting a house owned by the district would reduce income by another $4,000.
More students to SWACC
The board authorized sending 28 students to SWACC for the coming year, up from 18 last year. Vice said the highest number he has seen in nine years attending is 24. Additional students will add $28,000 to the tuition paid by the district.
"I'm excited that this many students want to come and we're able to do that," Lingo said.
In other action, the board approved a policy change mandated by Senate Bill 54. School districts are required to disclose to potential employers if past faculty have been accused of sexual misconduct.
Board members expressed reservations about passing along unfounded allegations, even if the intent of the law was good. Chancelor said the district would likely ask for guidance from legal counsel before responding to the law.
Asbestos Management was hired to serve as the district's consultant. The firm has served the district for the past 22 years.
Lingo announced that the district's nine buses passed the annual inspection with 100 percent compliance. Transportation director Rod Tucker would receive plaques to be displayed on each bus for the coming year.
Board members agreed to transfer up to 7 percent of the money in the district's incidental fund into the building fund. The transfer is only allowed by law to be made in June. Lingo said annual transfers enabled the paving of district parking lots.
No new capital improvements have been scheduled. There is interest in replacing the floor of the elementary gym. Vice said two bids have been received that put the cost around $20,000.
Vice told board members he has concentrated on completing data submissions to the Missouri Student Information System. He was pleased the online service allowing parents to check grades has proven popular. The process has increased parent-teacher communication.
Jeff Swadley, elementary principal, said 225 students enrolled for summer school. The numbers will add 37.7 more students to the state's count of enrolled pupils for the year. He said Edison Learning paid around $20,000 to students for attending summer school classes.
Lingo reported the high school lockers had been repainted at no cost to the district.
As a surprise send-off for Lingo's retirement after 10 years of service to the district, the board presented tickets for Lingo and his wife, Janet, to take a Carnival liner cruise in the Caribbean.