Unit 40 saves money by using district resources for painting project | Local News

Officials say Unit 40 saved a bundle by turning down an offer to quilt and paint at Effingham Junior High School.

Unit 40 Assistant Superintendent Jason Fox said the board recently turned down an offer of $453,000 to repair and paint the EJHS. He said they had investigated other options and considered using district resources to paint the project.

He said he would like to award the patching of the building to Kirks Inc. of Vandalia, which came highly recommended by local contractors for the amount of $23,730 for the patching work and the purchase of much of painting for the amount of $20,000 which would be a big discount for the school district.

Painting for the project would be done by Unit 40 staff. Fox noted that Todd Thoele, building and grounds manager, painted commercial buildings for 13 years before taking a position in the district.

Fox said he also considered renting an elevator for the project and found it would be more cost effective to purchase an elevator that could also be used for this EJHS project and the painting of the future Unit 40 building. He asked permission to buy one for up to $40,000 for a 60-foot lift.

He said that with the purchase of additional paint and supplies, he estimates the painting project at $118,750, significantly lower than the bid received by the district for $453,000.

Fox said he expects the project to be finished by the end of the summer.

Council members voted to move forward with the repair and paint project with the additional purchase of a 60-foot elevator not to exceed $40,000.

Meanwhile, Fox said last month at a meeting he did not attend that there had been discussions about the South Side School’s exterior door project. The cost of the project was quoted at $149,000 by Grunloh Construction. He said the construction company would honor that offer now if the council wanted to go ahead with the project.

“These gates are 30 weeks, to be paid for in FY23 or if installed in July next summer they would be paid for in FY24,” he said.

The council has agreed to proceed with the South Side School Gate project.

Shelly Beck, Curriculum Director, provided the board with several recommendations for learning materials for the 22-23 school year.

The first was a 6-12 tape instructional program that includes “Sight Reading Factory” by GraceNotes. Beck said it would help reading and music theory students. She said the course can be tailored to the students’ needs.

She presented a social studies curriculum for students in grades 3-5 called “Living Social Studies” which is flexible depending on the student’s abilities and some of the texts are also available in Spanish.

These were two K-5 science curriculum recommendations. “Mystery Science” for K-3 students. Beck said the program is geared towards young learners, the coursework is highly interactive, hands-on and video-based. A recommendation to use “Into Science” is designed for fourth and fifth graders. She said teachers love the program so they can better prepare students for junior high using “Into Science.”

Beck introduced a 6th-8th grade art curriculum “Master Class” that gives students access to videos from artists in the field. She recommended a 9-12 art purchase to include the subscription-based “Scholastic Art Magazine” and the purchase of a WACOM Cintiq pro 16.

“Shelly, do we have a standard evaluation and selection process that you use for each of these different programs,” asked Chad Thompson, board member.

“We have so many content areas and grade levels that we don’t have a single tool,” Beck said.

Beck went on to detail how the program decisions were made for Unit 40.

In other subjects, the council:

• Approved annual membership renewal for the 2022-23 school year with Illinois Elementary School Association fees in the amount of $1,365 and Illinois High School Association membership renewal free of charge associates.

• Approved the sale of a 287 square foot property at the corner of South Henrietta Street and West Richland Avenue to Effingham Junior High School where a bench group is currently located to the Illinois Department of Transportation for $5 $600. Jason Fox said the state plans to widen the road to put an island in the center of Henrietta to separate north and south traffic.

• Approved an employee assistance program which will come into effect on July 1st for an amount of $9,048. The program provides 24/7/365 access to certified mental health professionals and clinical coaches for employees and their families. The program is open to all staff members.

• Approval of a voluntary and catastrophic renewal of student accident insurance for an amount of $1,390.

• Accepted the following resignations:

Jordan Andruch – HS Junior Varsity Boys Basketball Coach

Alex Bohnhoff – HS Freshman Boys Basketball Coach

Kasondra Murray – Teacher, Effingham High School

Josaphine Westendorf – Paraprofessional

Kelsey Hutmacher – Pep Club Sponsor at EHS

David Lorton – Goalkeeper

Kara Huston – Special Education Teacher

Natasha Czerwonka – Secretary

• Approve the employment of personnel from:

Steven East – Goalkeeper

Brycelyn Simmons – Goalkeeper

Robert Weaver – Grounds Maintenance/Maintenance

Sidney Webster – EHS English Teacher 2022-23

• Approval of the hiring of K-5 summer bridge teachers:

Elizabeth Stevenson, Angie Moeller, Jennifer Hall, Sandy Lohman, Elizabeth Russell, Missy Donaldson, Emily King, Denice Tarin, Christin Hartke, Abbey Meinhart, Cheryl Scanlan and Abra Woomer.

• Approved the employment of K-5 Summer Bridge Paraprofessionals:

Angie Probst, Kim Bushue, Kerri Krischel, Diane Arnold, Brandy Simmons, Donna Shields, Amy Wernsing, Brittany Regenhardt and Darlene Krietemeyer.

• Approved the employment of summer/seasonal maintenance staff:

Payton Bushue, Blake Bushue, Maddox Burner and Jacob Weaver.

• Approved the hiring of summer technical/seasonal staff:

Jason Eirhart, Katrina Eirhart, Megan Adkins, Weston Peno, Miranda Fox, Jared Hammer, Austin Waldhoff, Taylor Green and Ty Morrissey.

• Approved summer/seasonal employment of Wayne Mapes for transportation.

• Approved the summer/seasonal employment of Darlene Kretemeyer as babysitter.

• Approved the transfer of Heather Hartman to the Student Services Secretariat.

• Named sponsor of the Sidney Webster Yearbook 2022-23.

• Named head soccer coach Logan Arney 2022-23.

• Accepted the retirement of bus driver Teresa Fuesting.

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