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  • Last modified 95 days ago (Jan. 17, 2019)

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Centre board expresses concerns about PTO fundraiser

Staff writer

Alcohol and a Herington location were two issues of concern Monday when Centre board members learned about a major fundraiser being planned by Centre Parents and Teachers Organization.

A March 30 adult-only Centre Pride Night will include a meal and raffle. Participants can purchase a ticket for an adult beverage along with a ticket for the meal.

Centre PTO is an organization that operates independent of Centre schools, so its fundraisers are not school functions and are not subject to school oversight.

Nevertheless, board members were quick to express their concerns and wanted their constituents to know about them.

“Be sure you put that in the minutes,” board president Mark Heiser told clerk Marianne Kohman.

Donald Raymer, a PTO member who is a principal and parent with children who attend Centre schools, provided information about the event upon Superintendent Susan Beeson’s request.

When Raymer said the fundraiser would include an optional alcohol drink and would be at Herington Community Building, board members protested.

“I liked the idea until you mentioned the alcohol,” Heather Steiner said. “We have six communities in our district, and we would go outside of the district?”

Board members agreed that Lincolnville Community Center would be an appropriate place for the event. Raymer said the PTO committee was expecting a big response and thought the building might be too small.

Anita Svoboda suggested they start out small and let the event grow from there.

Alcohol continued to be a major item of concern.

Some board members noted that proceeds from the event would go to the PTO and be donated to Centre schools, so in that sense, there is a connection.

“We don’t want to discourage people from volunteering to do things to help Centre schools, but we have concerns,” Eric Carlson said.

President Mark Heiser did not want the name “Centre” on any advertisements if they mentioned alcohol.

“It doesn’t put Centre in a good light,” he said.

Jesse Brunner agreed and said it didn’t send a good message to students.

Raymer said he would share board members’ concerns at the next PTO committee meeting Monday. As a school administrator, he cannot by law hold a leading position in the organization, but he can provide input as a parent.

Board actions

The board accepted proposed changes to the eligibility policy for extra-curricular participation, as stated in the student handbook.

Ashley Watchorn was hired as coach of the Biddy Basketball program for students in grades three through five. She will be paid $700. Dates have not been set.

A form for juniors and seniors to fill out as required when they plan to visit post-secondary schools was approved.

Long-term substitute business teacher Les Allison will be supplemented as sponsor of Centre’s Future Business Leaders of America chapter and yearbook. English teacher Sherri Hudson will be student council sponsor for the remainder of the year.

The board accepted the immediate resignation of Melissa Smith as bus driver.

The board discussed purchase of new junior high volleyball uniforms and new volleyball nets. Action was tabled until the February meeting.

A representative of Energy Solutions Professionals presented findings from a preliminary energy audit. She suggested the board could approve an energy performance contract with the company to make upgrades that would be guaranteed to produce long-term energy savings. No action was taken.

After a final evaluation in executive session of the superintendent’s performance, her contract was extended through the 2020-2021 school year.

Last modified Jan. 17, 2019

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