The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

October 25, 2013

Van Buren, Harmony discuss school sharing opportunities

KEOSAUQUA — Members of Van Buren and Harmony school boards met during Van Buren’s regular board meeting on Oct. 16 to discuss sharing opportunities between the two school districts.

As a result of the meeting, school board members will tour the four school buildings in the two districts over a two-week period and study future sharing ideas.

Van Buren board members will tour Harmony’s facilities Wednesday, Oct. 30, and Saturday, Nov. 2 at 9:30 a.m.

Harmony board members will tour Van Buren on Nov. 4 and Nov. 7.

Van Buren and Harmony already share junior high football and are in the process of sharing some transportation and curriculum director functions.

The Van Buren school board, during its regular meeting, discussed its strategic planning for building improvements and approved bids for repair work stemming from last May’s storm that damaged the schools athletic fields.

Action and discussion items included:

• Strategic planning on building improvements: Superintendent Pam Ewell presented a draft entitled “Planning for the Future- Building Improvements Fall 2013-15.”

From October through December, the plan calls for a needs and analysis survey with all staff, parents, board members and community members. It includes tours of the buildings. Among other things, the board will discuss what they perceive as the needs of the district and compare it with what the staff reports and then see what the overlapping needs are.

• Kuno update: Students are “doing great taking care of their devices,” said Chuck Banks, principal at the high school. “The Kunos are continuing to be infused into instruction each day.”

According to digital integration specialist Renee Thomas, so far, there have been four cracked/broken screens, with each family being billed $75.00. There have been some issues to work through, she stated. Connectivity is the biggest issue, as well as working with the vendor on other issues.

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