Once again, the Bolivar R-1 school board voted unanimously to approve a favorable annual independent auditor’s report during its regular session Thursday, Nov. 21. 

With the same results seen over the last several years, the district earned top marks on the report by Springfield-based KPM CPAs & Advisors. 

The report looked at the 2018-19 fiscal year, which ended on June 30. 

According to the unapproved minutes, the board met with KPM’s Andy Marmouget during closed session. 

The minutes said Marmouget summarized the auditor’s report, “stating no audit findings, a good report, the district is financially doing well.”

Prior to the open session vote, the board also took time to praise R-1 CFO Kelly Holt and staff for the clean audit. 

Board president Paula Hubbert said she wanted to “extend congratulations” to Holt and staff for “excellent work.”

“We hear time to time again what an excellent job — we’re in financial shape, how well our finances are in order,” Hubbert said, giving thanks to Holt and staff. 

Reorganizing meeting and board seats up for grab

The board set its reorganization meeting for Monday, April 16, following the April election which will see four board seats up for grabs.

Candidate filing for the R-1 board will be Friday, Dec. 17 through Tuesday, Jan. 21, Hubbert said.

Hubbert said of the four board seats available, three will be four-year terms and one will be a one-year term.

R-1 board members with ending terms are Brandon Van Deren, Jesse Sheppeck, Bill vanHoornbeek and Jeralen Shive. 

Filing for the board positions can be made at R-1’s central office, Hubbert said. 

“Anyone who has any questions can contact me or Sheila Anderson, our board secretary,” she said, adding “it’s going to be an eventful spring.” 

Building updates

The board discussed updates on the district’s building projects.

Berry said the Early Childhood Learning Center’s building’s steel beams were to be erected.

“Sitework for the ECLC parking lot is complete,” he said, adding sitework has now moved to the water and sewer system.

For Bolivar Middle School’s expansions, Berry said “we ran into a little complications.”

“They have not been able to adequately be able to take care of the cabling,” Berry said. “We can’t start that construction because if we lose the services out at the gymnasium, lots of problems could happen.”

He cited the internet as the main concern, noting the loss of that function will disrupt learning at BMS.

“We are working diligently so they can get that started,” Berry said, referring to relations with the middle school expansion’s construction company. “We had a very stern talk eye-to-eye.”

Berry said the company assured the district the new middle school expansion will “still be open for the 20-21 school year.”

New wrestling space

With BHS’ wrestling program doubling in numbers this year, R-1 voted to accommodate the team’s need for more space by approving a lease agreement for property at 2950 S. Springfield Ave.

“Our wrestling program is pushing upper 40’s,” R-1 Superintendent Tony Berry said, referring to the number of students in the program. “Also, MHSAA approved girls wrestling, so that program is growing considerably.”

VanHoornbeek asked Berry how many female wrestlers were participating in the program, and Berry said there were five.

The program currently utilizes one wrestling mat at BHS, but the new facility at 2950 S. Springfield Ave. will “allow us just under two mats in that facility, so it is going to be doubling our space” Berry said.

“We’re going to rent that property for about $500 a month, which is unheard of in this market,” he added. 

Other items on agenda

  • The motion was made and seconded to employ Hillary Woods-Cotham as nurse at BIS, SMSgt. Stephen Bender as AFJROTC instructor at BHS for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year and Ben Rohrs as the 2019-20 speech and debate coach at BMS.
  • The motion was made and seconded to approve the listing of bills as presented with additions, except for check #98430 to Citizens Memorial Sports Medicine and check #98429 to Citizens Home Medical. Sheppeck abstained.
  • Official resignation notice has been received from Jordan Denning, BHS ninth-grade volleyball coach, for extra duty only.

Closed session

The board also met in closed session Nov. 19 to discuss legal actions; leasing, purchasing and sale of real estate; hiring, firing, disciplining or promoting employees; individually identifiable personnel records, performance rating or records pertaining to employees; and other items protected by law.

According to the unapproved minutes, no action required to be reported by open records law was taken.

Board members J.R. Collins, Kyle Lancaster, vanHoornbeek, Sheppeck, Van Deren, Hubbert, and Shive were present for both the open and closed sessions.

The board’s next regular monthly meeting is set for Thursday, Dec. 19.

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