September 8, 2021
In a special meeting of the Board of Education on September 7, 2021, the Board voted unanimously to place Superintendent Jerry Hodson on administrative leave until further notice. The Board, also in a unanimous vote, named Chapman High School principal Kevin Suther as interim superintendent.
August 20, 2021
To the Patrons of USD 473, Greetings!
Each month I will post a recap of highlights from that month’s Board of Education meeting as well as feature some of our schools’ accomplishments. You will find this post under the Board of Education link on the homepage of our website: www.usd473.net. This month’s topics are: return to school protocols, the budget, Revenue Neutral Rate, and Kansas Educational Systems Accreditation (KESA).
Return to School Protocols
After a lengthy discussion, the Board approved the return to school protocols to include making the wearing of masks optional. We will monitor the positivity rate and number of new cases of COVID-19 and the Delta variant as we progress through the fall. The Board will review the situation on an on-going basis. The district has posted its “COVID-19 Quarantine Protocols for School Exposure” on the website. Just a reminder, if you or your student is exposed to COVID-19 while at home or in the community, you/they should quarantine at home. The quarantine protocols apply only to exposure at school.
This year’s budget has been completed. We will have the Budget Hearing on the morning of August 23rd at 7:45. Prior to that, we will have a hearing on the Revenue Neutral Rate at 7:30 AM. The Revenue Neutral Rate (RNR) is a new state law that became effective this budget year.
The district’s budget is calculated using mills. One mill is equal to 0.001 of a dollar, or $1.00 for every $1000.00 of assessed property value. By state law, all USDs in Kansas are required to assess 20 mills to support their district’s general budget fund.
The Revenue Neutral Rate (RNR) is calculated on a dollar amount regardless of the millage rate. To illustrate, if our budget was $1million last year, the state legislature wants us to assess our 20 mills and also to cap our current year’s budget at $1million. However, if our current millage rate generates more than $1million based on assessed property values, the district must seek authorization to exceed that cap. Most if not all USDs in our state will be seeking this authorization to exceed the RNR cap.
Kansas Educational Systems Accreditation (KESA)
The Kansas Education Systems Accreditation (KESA) is the state’s accrediting process for K-12 schools, which accredits the schools at the district level. Accreditation at the system (district) level is intended to create comprehensive change within and among the individual schools across the district. The Kansas State Board of Education identified five goal areas believed to produce a successful high school graduate. These goals are:
- Social-Emotional Factors Measured Locally
- Kindergarten Readiness
- Individual Plans of Study
- High School Graduation
- Postsecondary Success
The KESA model focuses school districts on meeting these goals. The Board of Education aligns its goals with these aims. The Board will meet with the district directors and building principals later in September to turn the board goals into action steps.
I’ll reach out to you again following the September BOE meeting on Monday, September 13th. Thank you for allowing us to share in your children’s lives. They are our future.
President, USD 473 Board of Education