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School Board Accepts Resignations And Considers Recommendations

By Staff | May 19, 2011

Several resignations were tendered by staff of Emmetsburg Community Schools during the Board of Education Monday night, May 16. The school board also considered a number of coaching recommendations offered by Joe Carter, Athletic Director for the school district.

Among the submitted resignations were Renee Mahon, 8-12 guidance counselor; Rhonda Weisbrod, girls’ basketball chaperone; Barb Hanson, paraeducator; Tara Fastert, vocational agriculture teacher; and Betty Edwards, food service.

“I was sad to see Ms. Fastert leave,” said Board Member Laure Egland.

“I was disappointed to hear that, too. I had a very nice discussion with her, and she stated that she really wants to farm on the family farm, and this is her one opportunity to do that,” Board President Karla Anderson shared. “She is saddened to leave the school district and she’s had a very good experience here. I shared with her that we were happy to see the effort she put into the program, and I think she’s going to work with Mr. Jurrens to find a replacement who will stay in the path that she’s been trying to lead the program in.”

Anderson noted that Betty Edwards had worked in food service for 24 years, and that Rhonda Weisbrod had continued to chaperone girls’ basketball long after her own children were finished with the program.

Egland made a motion to accept the resignations. Don Hagen, board member, seconded the motion and thanked the departing staff for their years of service to the district.

In related business, the board accepted Aaron Phillips as a music teacher. At the April meeting of the board, Phillips’s name had been inadvertently omitted from the list of teachers for the 2011-2012 school year.

Board members also considered the recommendations of Athletic Director Joe Carter: Missy Birkey, girls’ basketball chaperone; Jared Pickett, middle school boys’ track; Marc Riley and Taylor Morris as volunteer assistant baseball coaches; and John Kennedy, assistant softball.

“I only have one question on these coaching recommendations,” said Anderson. “Taylor Morris has been out of school for how many years with us?”

“Two years,” answered Superintendent John Joynt. “Marc Riley has been out of school now for several years.”

“Marc has helped us with other things,” Hagen noted.

“Did they ask to be volunteer assistant baseball coaches?” Egland wondered.

“I don’t know how it turned out, but I talked to Mr. Hanson and he said they would help out, especially with pitching practice,” Joynt answered.

Anderson shared that she had discussed her concerns with Mr. Carter about former students returning to assist with athletic programs soon after graduation.

“It’s wonderful that they want to come back and help, I’m concerned that they may be working with athletes that they may have been teammates with,” said Anderson. “I think it’s going to be difficult for some of them to have respect for these assistant coaches.”

“If they think it will help the kids’ pitching and batting, I think it’s a good thing,” noted Egland. “There has to be someone to throw pitches to these kids. I don’t see a problem. The only thing is I would caution that they have to be good role models for the kids.”

“With these younger kids coming back to help out, I agree with Karla 100-percent,” said Hagen. “I would hope that our coaches would control that and it would be at their discretion. And if they have trouble with them not acting like adults around these juniors and seniors in high school, I would hope that they would take care of that.”

With no further discussion, the board accepted the recommendations with approval for Taylor Morris pending coaching certification and a background check.

In other business, the board members approved 28E Agreements with Emmetsburg Catholic School for a music teacher and physical education teacher. Both teachers will spend 27-percent of their time at the Catholic School.

The school board also approved a contract for services provided by Iowa Lakes Community College for the 2011-2012 school year. The four separate contracts: for the jointly sponsored Education Program, College Prep Education Program, Career Academy, and Career & Technical Education Program.

“We have kids who sign up for these courses at Iowa Lakes, and others who take classes through Iowa Lakes at our high school,” explained Joynt. “We apply for supplemental weighting for all of these. Some courses we make a little money on, other courses we lose a little money on. It’s just a great opportunity for the kids.”

The contracts were accepted and approved by the board.