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Verndale board plans around funding shift

The Verndale School Board chewed up 17 items of new business Monday in their June meeting at the district office.

Operating in the shadow of Gov. Tim Pawlenty's unallotment plan, which shifts -- or delays payment on -- funding from a 90/10 percent payment schedule to a 73/27 percent schedule, the board approved a preliminary estimated budget which anticipated revenue of $4,777,677 and expenditure of $4,713,175. The board's estimated fund balance on June 30 is set at $1,416,487.

The state of Minnesota has traditionally spent 40 percent of the state's budget on education but Pawlenty is calling for a $1.77 billion reduction in education funding.

"For us it will be OK because we won't have to borrow money," Verndale Superintendent-Principal Paul Brownlow told the board.

Extracurricular recommendations were presented with the baseball and softball coaching positions unfilled at this time. Justin Sperling and Tim Seaton were the head baseball and softball coaches in spring 2009. The school is also looking for a new Family, Career, Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) advisor following the resignation of LaNette Aeling.

The board approved the hiring of elementary teachers Gena Sperling, Kali Sagedahl and Rachel Johnson.

The board looked at a summer work/repair schedule that called for $9,275. The sixth grade classroom renovation project came in at $16,330 with the largest quote being for 20 computers -- $14,580.

Brownlow is working with local districts on obtaining a group purchasing option for the SMARTboard technology which the board has elected to pursue. Brownlow is hoping to purchase 15 boards for the coming school year using Regional Economic Area Partnership grant money and special education stimulus funds.

The 2009-10 school year in Verndale will begin with a new teacher workshop Aug. 27-28. The first day of school for the student body is Sept. 8. The Christmas vacation will begin Dec. 23 with classes resuming on Jan. 4. A snow day has been built into the schedule. If it is used, the last day of school for students will be June 3 with graduation set for June 4.