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9-8-23 — September 2023 Board Meeting Review
Sept. 8, 2023 ~ The Olathe Public Schools Board of Education met Sept. 7 for its regular monthly meeting. Prior to the regular meeting, the board held a public hearing to consider exceeding the revenue neutral rate in levying taxes in support of the FY2024 budget. The resolution was adopted. The board also held a public hearing regarding the FY2024 budget.
The regular meeting agenda included several recognitions, presentations and more than a dozen action items.
- Thirty-seven members of the Volunteers Serving Schools program received 2022-23 Presidential Service Awards for their outstanding volunteerism. There were 29 Bronze Awards for 100-249 hours, five Silver Awards for 250-499 hours, and three Gold Award for more than 500 hours of service last school year.
- The Olathe West High School softball team won the 6A state championship.
- Several Olathe athletes were honored for state championships in track and field this past spring. Read about these outstanding athletes.
- Isabella Foster and Hannah Cleveland, both of Olathe North High School, earned third place in the National Catholic Forensic League Grand National Tournament.
Sean Bohon, principal of Prairie Center Elementary School, shared an overview of his school which is known as the home of the Pioneers. Prairie Center’s theme for this year is Every Student, Every Day, No Matter What! That means starting each student’s day off right with engaging lessons and activities, community engagement in the form of volunteerism, food drives, special visitors, and interaction with partners like Journey Bible Church. He highlighted student achievements on the 2022-23 Kansas Assessments which included having the highest growth in the district in fourth and fifth grade English language arts and math scores.
Achievement Data from 2022-23
Dr. Julie Veatch, director of school improvement, assessment and curriculum, shared data from the 2022-23 school year including areas of growth and needed focus.
She reviewed the district’s diverse student needs before summarizing the types of assessments used, their frequency and grade level focus. Assessments include FastBridge math and reading screeners, formative assessments, KITE predictive interim assessment, and KITE summative assessment. She pointed out average growth in each area for all students taking the test, as well as grade level focus areas for each assessment.
Finally, Dr. Veatch summarized district ACT scores compared to the national average and said Olathe’s composite score is 21.9 compared to the national 20.6. Scores from the eighth and 10th grade Kansas Assessment Program are used to help predict how a student may perform on the ACT in English language arts, reading and math.
Overall, the multi-tier system of supports (MTSS), positive behavior intervention supports (PBIS) and various other districtwide interventions are working well in Olathe. Administrators are focusing on three areas to make even more improvements: using Tier 1 instruction to provide a guaranteed and viable curriculum to all students; defining high quality instruction; and building the efficacy of teachers.
In other business, the board:
- Approved a consent agenda including meeting minutes, financial and accounts payable reports, human resources report; student trips, board policy updates, secondary core literature list update, AP European history resource, Gizmos renewal for high school science courses, revised competencies for high school Public Safety Academy courses, and revised competencies for family and consumer sciences courses.
- Approved the annual license renewal of the electronic hall pass system. (capital outlay)
- Approved the purchase of security system cameras and equipment for the new Santa Fe Trail Middle School. (Bond 2022)
- Approved the purchase of new audiology equipment to replace aged equipment. (capital outlay)
- Approved the renewal of the Cisco Security Enterprise agreement. (capital outlay)
- Approved renewal of the agreement for athletic apparel and equipment. (general, district student activity, student activity, and capital outlay funds)
- Approved the Board of Education 2023-24 committee and site council assignments.
- Adopted a resolution calling for a local option budget in the amount of 33% for the 2023-24 school year.
- Adopted the 2023-24 budget.
- Received information on future action items including student trips, Animal Health Academy science curriculum revisions, Moral Courage Project training, architectural and engineering proposal for 2024 aging facilities projects, mechanical engineering consultant proposal for summer 2024 HVAC projects, roofing consultant proposal for summer 2024 roofing projects, project bidding schedule for the new Operations Service Center and Career and Technical Education Center, Microsoft licensing renewal, replacement Microsoft Surface accessories, Ad Astra Government Relations LLC contract, and purchase and installation of access control and safety measures at the Education Center.
- Received the monthly Head Start director’s report.
- Received the monthly Bond 2022 update.
- Held an executive session to discuss non-elected personnel matters.
- Held an executive session for the board to consult with its attorney.