The Lanesboro School Board met on Thursday, June 19, for its regular board meeting. Superintendent Jeff Boggs informed the board of the school receiving 15 brand new engines worth $7,500 for the school.

Kristi Ruen, who is in charge of agriculture, food and natural resources as well as the FFA at the Lanesboro school, approached Boggs about participating in a class which would train people to work with small engines.

After applying and being accepted, the cost of the training is $350, but in turn Ruen will be bringing back new engines from Briggs and Stratton.

Briggs and Stratton is sharing the engines with the school in order to encourage students to learn mechanics with the hope that if they will be exposed to mechanical objects, a new generation of mechanics would be raised.

"If they are not exposed to mechanics, there will be fewer mechanics in the future," Boggs related. "This way, Briggs and Stratton are probably giving a lot away to encourage schools to teach the class, but it is a great deal for us and benefits Briggs and Stratton down the road with more mechanics."

Operating referendum

Boggs also briefed the board on a new opportunity regarding an operating referendum for the school.

Last year the state created an opportunity for schools to get additional revenue, but in July the state changed it to be for schools with over 2,000 students, ruling out Lanesboro. However, the state may have taken some heat about that decision, because, according to Boggs, things look different now than they did last year.

Last year, the proposal regarded schools being able to reduce a present referendum or could do a board approved referendum. Schools with no operating referendum have the ability for the board to approve a $424 referendum without voter approval. In return, the state would give the school $300 back per student.

"It may make sense for Lanesboro schools to reestablish a board approved referendum in order to take advantage of the state match of $300. It would be crazy not to do it," Boggs commented.

This information was merely shared at the meeting this month pending more information to come in July for the board meeting. Voting for the referendum would take place either in July or August.

Health and safety

The board approved the Health and Safety Policy for this next school year at the meeting. The policy itself is the same as last year's but, according to Boggs, the state of Minnesota is requiring the policy be approved and recorded in the minutes every year from now on.

The only changes to the policy recently took place several years ago due to a few new state rules.

At the same time the board approved the Health and Safety Budget. One amount Boggs elaborated on was the $3,400 set aside for elevator inspections.

"The elevator must be inspected every month and is required by the state. Some people have commented on why we pay $250 per month just to have someone come in and look at it. Actually, this price is a bargain. A few years ago it cost around $400 to inspect," Boggs stressed.

The current inspector the school is working with is a "good guy" to work with, Boggs added.

He said the inspector looks and sees what must be done or change in the future, saving the school money in the process. The next time he comes to inspect he is able to sign off on the correction the school made based on his past recommendations and information.

One part that must be worked on is lights in the pit of the elevator. These are required as well. Boggs noted next month this problem will be addressed. He arranged for the electrician and the inspector to be at the school simultaneously for this to be done quickly.

Personnel

The board approved several resignations from positions in the school. Kristi Ruen asked to resign from the ECFE since she no longer has the time necessary for it. Kami Highum resigned from the kitchen and Lisa Chiglo resigned from concessions because of a busy schedule as well. However, she will still participate at the school doing other projects.

The board approved the non-certified contracts for the paraprofessionals, daycare staff, bus drivers and other personnel. It also approved the administrative contracts for next year.

Radon testing

About every three years, Lanesboro school performs radon testing organized by the International Energy Agency.

This year 25 detectors were placed around the school from Jan. 22 to April 24. In the past, the results were generally positive and less than the acceptable limits.

Superintendent Boggs received the results again and they were all between zero and 1.9 at the absolutely lowest level. This is well below the limit. He stated there is no need to worry about the level until it is over four.

For the results, the state is now requiring the minutes of the board meeting indicate that the results were shared with the school board during a regular meeting. The board accepted the results from the radon testing.

Other business

The board approved the budget from the fiscal year 2014 to be the template for the initial budget for the fiscal year 2015.

The board also approved a motion authorizing milk bids. Unlike previous years, there is no longer a bid for bread. The school has been receiving paper bids from Southeast Service Cooperative and they also offer bread bids at a lower price. The school has therefore committed to Southeast Service Cooperative for the bread bid.

To wrap up the meeting, board member Chris Troendle commented that the FFA dairy judging team was currently in Scotland and had a good first day.