School board to consider cutting instructor contracts, replacing MHS parking lot

Five Mitchell School District instructors may soon see a portion of their contracts cut. The Mitchell Board of Education will be considering not renewing a portion of the contracts for five instructors in the district who direct Building 21st Cen...

Mitchell residents will vote at the Mitchell Career and Technical Education Academy, 821 N. Capital St., today. Voters can cast their ballots for the mayoral race, a one-year school board seat, a three-year school board seat and members of Ward 3 for their council representative. (Matt Gade/Republic)
The Mitchell Career & Technical Education Academy. (Republic file photo)

Five Mitchell School District instructors may soon see a portion of their contracts cut.

The Mitchell Board of Education will be considering not renewing a portion of the contracts for five instructors in the district who direct Building 21st Century programs during its regularly scheduled meeting today. The meeting will be held at 5 p.m. in the Mitchell Career and Technical Education Academy.

The 2017-18 school year is the final year of the five-year 21st Century Community Learning Center Grant for the Mitchell School District, which includes an after school, summer school and before school program at Longfellow Elementary, L.B. Williams Elementary and Mitchell Middle School.

The five-year grant program is "highly competitive," according to Superintendent Joe Graves in the district's online board book, and reductions need to be issued at this time.

The district is planning to apply for the grant again, and if secured, the five individuals would automatically be recalled to these positions, the board book states.


The reductions, for only the 21st Century director portion of their contract, include Cheryle Aslesen, Mindy Childs, Bobby Reindl, Diane Way and Beth Haar.

The five-person school board will also consider approving a bid to replace the Mitchell High School parking lot.

The board will decide between three options. The first option is a $56,628 plan to replace the first lot south of the high school, while the second option looks to fix the second lot south of the high school, including the road between the two lots. The second option is $85,668. The third option is to complete both lots and the road for $139,062.


As part of a consent agenda that includes board minutes, claims and open enrollment, the board will consider the following personnel items:

• New Hires: Lacey Schroeder, special education paraeducator at Mitchell Middle School, compensation of $11.37 per hour for 7.25 hours per day, effective Jan. 22.

• Transfer: Nancy Heckenlaible, Gertie Belle Rogers Elementary food service from four hours to five hours, effective Feb. 6.

• Resignation: Amanda Chada, Mitchell Middle School teacher, effective 2018-19 school year; Wendy Kummer, Mitchell Middle School math teacher, effective May 25.


• Resignation and early retirement: Janelle Hearnen, Mitchell Middle School sixth-grade teacher, effective 2017-18 school year.

• Mitchell Technical Institute retirement: H Jean Starr, Mitchell Tech general education math instructor, effective June 30.

Other business

In other regular business, the board will:

• Recognize gymnastics coach Audra Rew for her recent accomplishments, including the team's conference championship.

• Consider approving bids for the Mitchell Technical Institute shop houses.

• Consider approving a bid for the replacement of a cooling tower at the Mitchell Middle School.

• Hear board member reports. During this time, Mitchell Board of Education Vice President Neil Putnam will provide information on his recent trip to the Dominican Republic. A reading will also be held at this time for the legislative commemoration in Putnam's honor. The commemoration honors Putnam for his selection as the Associated School Boards of South Dakota Outstanding School Board Member of South Dakota for 2017.


• Hear a superintendent's report and public commentary.

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