YME school board holds May meeting

Jess Gorman
Granite Falls Advocate Tribune

The Yellow Medicine East School Board met Monday May 10. Present were board members Jeremy LeBlanc, Amanda Lecy, Dawn Odegard, Sonja Pederson, Sharon Rupp, Ron Winter, and Matt Zempel. 

The meeting started with the approval of the consent agenda which carried normal items such as past minute approval, payment disbursal, a finance report, and an enrollment report. Tom Schaffer was present as a representative for  USAquatics, Inc. The company reviewed the status of the Clarkfield pool and Mr. Schaffer, alongside Clarkfield City administrator Chris Webb, fielded questions regarding the pool posed by the board members. 

Roberta Bjerkeset delivered the annual report on Indian education programming at YME and answered questions from the board. High School and Middle School Principal Ryan Luft, reported on the success of the well attended 2021 Prom. Other updates from Luft included the annual Cords & Awards Ceremony scheduled for June 3 as well as opportunities for summer school which will be offered in June.

In other happenings, The board met via a Zoom call with Gail Gilman from MSBA regarding strategic planning session options and Board Member Dawn Odegard shared a note sent from the MN West nursing program expressing their appreciation to YME for the use of space and assistance with their pinning ceremony.

In elementary news, Bert Raney Principal, Lisa Hansen, went over her submitted report which gave an update on Bert’s Club, and shared information on the Kindergarten Kickoff event that was held on April 27. The Kickoff was well attended. Hansen indicated that reading interventions will be held in June and August, and showed plans for the new preschool playground.

Superintendent Schneider gave a summary of his submitted report to the board which included a staffing update, information on our ESSER II allocation, and an update on the auditorium reconstruction.

Several Resignations were approved by the board. Staff resigning positions included: Trevor Schulte (Success Coach), Laurie Blue-Pooler (Native American Liaison), Julie Runia (Elementary Instructor), and Adam Savariego (Native American Liaison). Leave of absence requests were approved for Jenna Luepke in Food Service and Robyn Aslesen who is a MS/HS Instructor. The employment of Megan Smallman as the new Elementary Physical Education Instructor was also approved.

YME Finance Officer LeeAnn Boushek went over budget revisions to the 2020-2021 budget and fielded questions from the board which approved the needed changes. 

In other Board actions, approvals were given to provide payroll and accounting services to the Minnesota Valley Cooperative Center for the 2021-2022 school year and to purchase special education services from the Minnesota Valley Cooperative Center for the 2021-2022 school year.

A motion passed to honor the request received from the Senior Class of 2021 to be exempt from school attendance June 1-4, 2021 provided the student has met all graduation requirements, is in good academic standing, and not in violation of the attendance policy.

The board entered into a closed session to discuss the employee evaluation of Ryan Luft, MS/HS Principal. The meeting was then reopened and adjourned. Upcoming events include Graduation on June 4, 2021 - 7:00 pm and a Policy Committee Meeting on May 17, 2021 at5:30 pm.