By Mary Ann Inman


CLINTON – The Clinton Community District School Board met at the Clinton High School on Tuesday, Feb. 2, 7 p.m. Board Members present were: Gary Gilbank, Jill Gunderson, Dustin Esselman, Ken Luety, and Evelyn Propp. Tom Howard was absent.

Administrator Milton Thompson, Business Manager Dan McCrea, Director of Teaching, Learning, and Assessment Nicole Erickson, Mirtha Patterson-Rivera, Michael Mikulasch, Frank Crivello, Jeff Spiwak, Katy Fisher, Laura Benisch and Ben Brueggen were present.

Several citizens and other educators attended.

After regular opening procedures, minutes, and expenditures were approved. Staff changes were as follows: retirements: Ray Vance and Christine Piehler Vance, resignations: Katherine Dillion and Emily Yungen, hire: Carlene Lawrence and Amber Wollslair.

Ben Brueggen received approval of an overnight trip to Tri-State Honors Band Festival on Feb 12 and 13 for 3 students. He will chaperone. Students pay $20 and $60 is paid from the band account per student.

Social Studies teachers Frank Crivello, Katy Fisher and Jeff Spiwak presented and thanked the board for the opportunity to attend the National Council for Social Studies Conference. Each of them talked about the value of attending.

Then Michael Mikulasch reviewed a planned Berlin and Bavaria trip at a cost of $3,418 from March 24 to April 1. Mirtha Patterson-Rivera followed by noting details about the Castilla to Barcelona trip at a cost of $3,334 from March 23 to April 2. The board approved both World Star sponsored tours.

The accounting/DECA team was omitted from the agenda but since they were present they were allowed to present without action. The team led by Laura Benisch talked about a symposium accounting grant including the Green Bay Business Hall of Fame, Sheboygan tour, and University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. A deposit of $25-$40 is required the rest is grant funded with a maximum registration of 25. DECA students will given preference.

Nicole Erickson received 48 of 100 surveys sent regarding budgeting tailored to fit classroom needs. District staff was included as well.

Gary Gilbank thought the number of surveys returned was disappointingly low. McCrea and Erickson will review survey results and compare needs to bonus value.

Erickson also addressed the need for early intervention concerning numbers sense. Studies have shown if students do not comprehend numbers sense by fifth grade rebound success in mathematics is limited. A composite score is 19.6 therefore specialized connections are necessary.

Nicole Erickson also presented teaching, learning, and assessment updates. She stressed professional staff and building staff feedback in process communication drafts. The duties include a review of scheduling, timeline, and planning for next year’s professional development.

The board approved the first reading of policies noting this is in the draft stage.

Dan McCrea talked about the budget planning process noting that the current reporting is 60 pages and suggested that it be reduced to 30 pages.

He reported that spending now is at 42 percent compared to last year’s 40 percent. McCrea reported the June 30, 2015 audit results have been posted online.

He noted open enrollments at CHS -1, CMS -2, and CES at +6. If a special education student enrolls it can cost $88,000. Open enrollment is an unpredictable budget area.

McCrea highlighted budget process assumptions as follows: the district will receive $110,000 in new revenue, there will be $0 increase per FTE, the budget expenses for 2015-2016 are cast forward, 1.5 percent increase in salaries, an 8 % increase in health insurance, 2 percent increase in all expenses, OPEB expenses and Fund 10, approximately $300,000, a net loss in open enrollment by 3 students, FTE will decrease from 1058 to 1048, property will experience 1 percent growth, the district will use Fund 39, long term debt, in order to pay it off early, State Aid will remain stable, the board will not borrow short-term, the board will use its full authority to levy within the revenue limit, and the board will need to consider pursuing additional sources of revenue for 2017-2018 fiscal year.

Ken Luety asked McCrea if checks and balances are in place to avoid accounting and tracking errors. McCrea explained two persons need to be present especially when cash is handled and for the most part controls were in place.

Noting smaller collections such as vending machine controls could be reviewed.

Discussion without action followed regarding a proposal for an expenditure for up to $20,000 needed to pursue an in depth three-day strategic planning process. The cost included of site facility fees, meals, and facilitation for an intense session involving 25 people. A Kenosha firm is available to facilitate.

Varied opinions followed regarding budget restraints and commitment involved including a suggestion that Mr. Thompson facilitate it. Thompson said he would charge the same amount noting there are cheaper firms that offer “chain saw” planning but advised the board to avoid those firms.

Milton Thompson addressed the Skip Warne land issue. Attorney firm Bard & Clark have been hired to contact the land deed back to Mrs. Warne.

President Gunderson announced that the School District hired James Brewer as the next District Administrator with the assistance of the hiring firm McPherson & Jacobson.

The meeting adjourned and went into closed session at 9:48 p.m.