2 of 3 teaching vacancies filled
Marion-Florence schools filled two of three teaching vacancies Monday night.
Christian Cooper, a new graduate of Bethany College, will become instrumental music instructor this fall, replacing Dmitry Bucklin, who resigned last month.
Riley Hill, a Chase County graduate now teaching in Salina, will fill a high school language arts vacancy created by the resignation of Lisa Johnson, who in December moved to Towanda and has accepted a position with Circle schools there.
The only vacancy remaining is for a vocal music instructor to replace Tomas Lambotte, who said in a resignation letter released Monday that he was leaving because he was needed on his family farm.
Breanna Doyle also was hired at Monday’s school board meeting as a part-time elementary teacher’s aide.
Just four members of the board were present for Monday’s meeting.
President Nick Kraus and member Jeremiah Lange were absent. The seventh seat on the board is vacant.
That vacancy may be filled by appointment as early as next month. Board members were told that one candidate, Marion police chief Tyler Mermis, has expressed interest.
In other business Monday, the board approved a request to have student Amelia Packham from the Hillsboro district attend Marion schools. Her family reportedly is moving to Marion.
She will bring to 28 the number of students attending Marion schools from outside the district. Ten are from Centre, six from Peabody-Burns, five from Chase County, four from Hillsboro, and three from El Dorado.
Out-of-district students represent 5.7 percent of the district’s total enrollment.
In addition to taking care of routine matters, board members briefly discussed preliminary plans for replacing heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems in district buildings.
Only a “guesstimate” of cost has been offered to date, but board member Katherine Young questioned the expense.
“Couldn’t you build a whole new building for that kind of money?” she asked.
She noted that the main target appears to be replacing old boiler systems, which she contends are not as antiquated as portrayed.
“If half of the cost is to replace the air conditioning,” she said, “that’s not very efficient.”
She also questioned claims about proposed HVAC systems being more efficient, asking to know just how much the district’s utility bills would decline.
Superintendent Aaron Homburg said he was exploring possibilities to finance HVAC work through lease-purchase agreements with local banks.
The topic will be discussed further at a future meeting.