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Culbertson School Board Holds Busy Meeting

The Culbertson Public Schools facility committee held a meeting Wednesday, Dec. 12, at which the U.S. Highway 2 renovation was discussed.
The Montana Department of Transportation presented the committee with a major project through town that would include storm drains, dedicated turning lanes, sidewalks, curbs and gutters.
The project will begin in approximately five years, and the DOT is seeking support from the school since they would like to utilize the old weigh scale property as public parking. Both perpendicular and angle parking plans were presented, though the DOT noted their preference to perpendicular parking.
The regular school board meeting was held in the school’s lunchroom at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 17.
The Culbertson Public School accounts report noted that, as of November, this fiscal school year, Annual has earned $1,829.77, spent $627.62, with a balance of $8,131.51. Athletics has earned $60, spent $9,413.46, with a balance of $335.59. Juniors 2020 has earned $500 with a balance of $3,271.54. Future Farmers of America has earned $1,575.75, spent $1,889.93 and transferred $140.90 into the Student Council account, for a balance of $7,729.68. Band/Choir has earned $880 and spent $262.40 for a balance of $812.46. Student Council has spent $36.50, earned $69.85 plus the $140.90 received from FFA, for a total balance of $4,378.81. Business Professionals of America earned $1,612.63, spent $2,070.34 with a balance of $3,043.69. Explore America has earned $8,000.61, spent $6,569.58, with a balance of $6,820.84. Science Olympiad has earned $898, spent $4,446.62, for a balance of $1,602.34.
Accounts that have remained the same are Senior 2018, $0; Seniors 2019, $2,183.32; Sophomore 2021, $2,162.35; Eighth Grade, $0; Cheerleaders, $297.32; Speech and Drama, $1,534.08; Vo-Ag Revolving, $2,570.12; Freshman 2022, $0; Play, $815; Jobs for Montana's Graduates, $590.56; Music Parents, $2,461.70; Art, $1,576.68; Library, $1,210.84; and Spanish Club, $15.46.
The athletics report showed that junior high basketball came to a conclusion Dec. 10 at the north tournaments held in Froid and Medicine Lake. The junior high boys team qualified for the Final Four tournament in Fairview, held Friday, Dec. 15. Varsity basketball has began with 12 girls and 20 boys participating. The cheer team has 11 members. The first day of elementary basketball practice will be Thursday, Jan. 3.
Science Olympiad was noted to have had a “good showing” in Bozeman, winning the Small School Trophy for the third consecutive year and placing seventh overall. High school had seven top 10 finishes. The junior high placed 19th overall with three top 10 finishes.
The fall high school music concert was held on Nov. 29 and was said to have been well received. The elementary concert was slated to be held Tuesday, Dec. 18, with the Student Council Parade of Lights to follow.
The student council also held a Snowball on Saturday, Dec. 8, at the Old Armory, with attendance of 40 couples.
Principal Mike Olson noted that he attended the regional MASSP meeting in Wolf Point Dec. 11, sharing that the main topics of conversation were STEM programs, schedules, 504 plans and principals convention in July.
As of December, 279 students are enrolled in grades kindergarten through grade 12.
The superintendent’s report noted that the Montana Legislature will be in session in early January. Superintendent Larry Crowder shared that the education bills will be a topic of discussion at future board meetings and emails to the board.
Work on the Eastern C Division football schedule for the 2019 season has been temporarily placed on hold due to the recent addition of Ekalaka to the conference. Future discussions will pertain to that matter when the division meets in Butte Jan. 20. Crowder hopes to have some direction on how to make an 11- team conference fit into a nine- week schedule.
Crowder is currently working on the verification survey for the Impact Aid application. The deadline for the Impact Aid application is Jan. 31.
In the next two months, he will be working on a K-12 staffing plan for the board to consider. It will include how many elementary classrooms should be considered at each grade level and how many teachers will need to be retained/hired to make it possible.
Crowder will also be working on a short-term and long-term facility plan for the board to consider. That plan will include the boiler replacement, Old Armory options, replacement of playground equipment, football field lighting, completion of the new elementary addition, additional security cameras, computer network upgrade and more. Crowder will present all plans to the board upon their completion.
The District Strategic Plan was presented for the board’s review and consideration, with Crowder noting that the plan was formulated in the middle to late 1990s by the school and community.
The following policies have been posted since Nov. 20, have received no comments and were adopted as posted: 1-04-113 Purchasing, 1-04-113.1 Fixed Asset Inventory, 1-04-145 School District Investments, 1-03-105 Liability Insurance, 1-04-132 Conflict of Interest, 1-04-149 School District Financial Management, 2-04-112 confidential Information, Appendix Y Culbertson
School Internal Control Procedures and Appendix Z Culbertson School District Organization Chart.
Athletics director David Solem recommended Joseph Kerney to fill the elementary boys’ basketball coaching position and Karli Brekke for the elementary girls’ basketball coaching position.
District clerk Lora Finnicum requested the ability to utilize an electronic signature card as a fraud protection measure. The ESC is no cost to the district and is recognized as a digitized signature of the clerk and board chairperson that is password protected. The password will be held by a third party who will be selected by the board.
The MHSA annual meeting proposals that will be voted upon in Butte Monday, Jan. 21, were presented to the board. Crowder asked the board to indicate what Culbertson’s vote would be.
The proposals presented were amending the executive board by-law, presented by the MHSA executive board. Conrad High School has proposed amending eligibility bylaw, amend eligibility bylaw interpretation, amend eighth-grade participation/transfer bylaws, amend general penalties bylaw, amend contests prohibited rule, appoint a committee to add girls’ wrestling as a MHSA-sanctioned sport and increase number of allowable basketball games to 20 for all classes.
Chris Finnicum was hired as a substitute bus monitor and was noted for previously “fulfilled his duty.”
The board then went into executive session for the superintendent’s evaluation.
The next regularly scheduled Culbertson board meeting will be Tuesday, Jan. 15.