North Putnam board in review mode concerning projects and programs

Saturday, February 23, 2013

BAINBRIDGE -- North Putnam School Board's monthly meeting Thursday night was more or less a year in review.

The board spent the evening going over new food programs for schools, looking at what is to come from the athletic department and updating several projects in the works.

New food service director Robyn Smith was hired in November and has been running ever since. Smith has filled all the positions in the food service area of the schools and is also working on getting new vending machines for the schools.

Smith and Superintendent Dan Noel are looking at a new program for schools called Healthy Vending. The vending machine project would put healthy snacks into vending machines for after school programs.

"Right now there are no other choices than candy," Noel told the board and audience. "It's about putting healthy food into kids' hands."

Along with a new vending machine project, Smith is tackling a new way to update parents when their child is low or in the negative on lunch funds.

Noel also went over the capital outlay, which is a way of allocating funds for projects in the future. Those funds will help with projects like new auditorium seating or a new phone system for the schools.

This capital outlay reserves funds so that the school system does not lose funding in the future.

Meanwhile, Athletic Director John Danaher is implementing some new plans as well. He recently attended an athletic directors conference and brought back some new ideas, one being starting the booster clubs for the sports teams again.

Danaher will also be setting up summer workshops for both students and coaches. He has also tweaked the sports handbook a bit and has asked that it be included in the middle and high school student planner for next year.

There was also discussion of bringing in an assistant superintendent to help Noel in the future.

The assistant superintendent position has been vacant since the 2011-12 school year. One of the big factors in this discussion was if it was financially viable and if Noel needed an assistant.

Several board members were in agreement that an assistant was not needed until Noel asked for one. Jill Sumerlot voiced that she would like to determine if financially it was do-able and also to see if Noel needed the help in reaching the goals he set for the corporation when he was hired.

The discussion is expected to continue at next month's meeting.

The board was also brought up to date about the situation with the Bainbridge Elementary roof. OMS will be asking for bids from roofing companies and will be able to present the board with bids for the roof by the next meeting.

The next meeting for the North Putnam School Board will be March 21 at 7 p.m. at North Putnam High School.

In other business:

* The board approved the new hiring of several employees and coaching staff: Heather Cline as media center assistant at the middle school, Jamie Tennis as the guidance office secretary at the high school, Mike Ball as volunteer assistant wrestling coach at the middle school and Laura Blaydes and Tim Surber as volunteer assistant softball coaches.

* Two resignations were also approved: Taylor Alles as assistant volleyball coach at the high school and Tim Surber as (paid) assistant softball coach at the high school.

* The baseball team and the band were approved for fundraisers.

* The Teen Student Leadership Academy was approved for an overnight trip to French Lick on Feb. 24-25.

* North Putnam High School will also be handing out a survey to the student body about new courses that the school could offer in the future. Classes that could available in the future are: fire rescue, commercial photography, graphic design and layout.

* A driver's education course will be available thorough North Putnam High School, the course will be taught by Straight Paths of Greencastle.

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