By ERIN SANSON
The March 13 Carlinville School Board meeting began by recognizing the High School musical cast and crew. The eight senior students in the cast came to the meeting to speak about their experiences with the musical throughout their school careers. The students talked about how the musical brings students from different activities together and the fun they have had participating in the musical.
Music Teacher and accompanist for the Musical Dustin White also came to the meeting to talk about his experience and some of the new technology the musical will be utilizing this year. For example, the musical rented a powerful projector that will change the scenes. White’s personal favorite is an app that allows him to turn to the next page of the sheet music using his face.
The enrollment forecast was presented to the Board by District business manager Heather DeNeve. CUSD #1 is looking at a declining student population for the next four years. Numbers have been declining for the previous six years but are predicted to decline less drastically from now until the 2026-27 school year.
The enrollment forecast is also on trend with other Illinois schools, especially in rural areas, who have seen declines in student enrollment as well. The student population of Illinois is on this downward trend as the birth rate has decreased, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
Over the last five years enrollment has decreased 2.3 percent or 30 students a year. The forecasted decrease from 2023-24 until 2026-27 is about 14 students per year, mostly at the Primary and High School.
School funding is based on Evidence Based Funding, which looks at a school’s enrollment. DeNeve said there was no need to worry about a loss of funding because the State had guaranteed a base minimum funding that protects funds from decreasing due to dropping enrollment. Having fewer students but the same funds also means Carlinville School District could be more adequately funded per student.
North School Sale
The North School also called the Early Childhood Center is in the process of being sold by the district. The district has yet to receive the appraisal for the property and has had to put the sale on hold until the appraisal is received.
Though they have not received the appraisal the board still discussed its options moving forward. The district can put it up for bid by either a sealed envelope or by auction. If there is no buyer at that time the Board could vote to reduce the price and again either auction the property or enlist a real estate agent to sell the property.
There were several parties who expressed interest in the property at one time, including the City of Carlinville which has since said they were no longer interested. There was no action to be taken on the discussion.
The board approved bids for three projects, two of which would be at the Middle-High School complex and one at the Primary School.
The second of two Chiller Compressors at the Primary School is in need of replacement. The first chiller compressor was replaced last year. The board approved the replacement by GRP for the amount of $30,303.
The first project at the Middle-High School complex is for roof replacement. Parts of the roof, mainly over the cafeteria and kitchen have already been replaced and it is time for the rest of the roof to be done. The roofing work would not include the High School gym, though the district is aware that it needs replaced as well. Different roof options are being explored for the gym roof such as a metal roof or if continuing with shingles is a better idea.
The roofing project bid by Bade Roofing was approved for $672,872.
The third project is the installation of a fence and gate system for the rear driveway of the Middle-High School complex.
The gates would be installed at the Middle school gym and at the High School near the vocational buildings. The fence near the vocational buildings will also be extended to contain the area. Each gate would be a locked gate that would feature a keypad entry as well as an intercom system for delivery drivers.
The board approved the project for American Quality Fencing for $29,374 pending verification that the intercom system aligns with the system currently installed.
While the discussion on matters of employment was minimal during open session 24 teachers were re-employed by the board.
Brian Austwick, Andrea Leefers, Kristin Siglock, Molly bartles, Darci Boston. Sarah marchiorri, Karen Eaves, Alexis Hill, Kendal Elvidge, Emilee Marcuzzo, Karlie Woszczynski, Vickie Joiner, Erin Emmons, Ellen Etter, Jesica Ryan, Lydia Armour and Ryan Bowman were re-employed for the 2023-24 school year.
Kelsey Davidson, David Suits, Megan Clagg, Suean O’Brien, Laura Kraner, Kevin Loveless and Karen Genetti were all re-employed and granted tenure beginning at the start of the 2023-24 school year.
Storm England, Carter Lowrance, Luke Bell, Montreal Thomas and Bari Phipps were approved for High Impact Tutoring.
The board accepted the resignations of Amanda Bentley and Terri Stocker, effective immediately.
The board approved the insurance bids from EMC, Encova, AIG and Chubb Cyber for 2023-2023 for a total of $202,552.
The board approved the Surplus Resolution FY23-05.
The school calendars for 2023-24 and 2024-25 were accepted.
A change to official’s pay for the upcoming school year was approved by the Board.
The Board voted to approve membership to the IHSA for the upcoming school year.