Six grants will benefit Medora Community School Corp. students and staff members.
During a meeting Nov. 9 in the media center, the board of school trustees unanimously accepted federal grants for the 2020-21 school year.
A Title I grant will be used to buy new smart boards for the classrooms. Those have been in all of the classrooms for at least 10 years.
Superintendent Roger Bane said the corporation had received an initial allocation of $91,835.48 and then was given an additional $19,314.67. The latter amount will allow for the purchase of six smart boards.
"The old ones were getting real dark, you couldn’t see and they wouldn’t center and we were having some problems with them, so we decided that we’re going to replace all of the downstairs and then start on the upstairs next year with the Booker (Foundation) money and get those all replaced and all new," Bane said.
The foundation is set up for the corporation to receive money each year for students’ technology needs.
Five new smart boards already have been installed, so the other six will be put in next year for a total of 11.
"The ones we have now are awesome," Bane said of the boards that have been installed.
The corporation will use a $12,473 Title II grant and a $14,000 Digital Learning Capacity Grant for professional development for staff members.
A High Ability Grant valued at $18,875.11 will go toward STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) clubs and Project Lead the Way, while a Digital Learning-Community Advisory Grant for $36,623.50 will be used for professional development and Project Lead the Way software for the junior high.
Finally, a $50,000 STEM Acceleration Grant will be used for STEM curriculum, training and contracted services for grades 7 through 12.
Donations, contracts approved
Also during the Nov. 9 meeting, the board approved a $4,000 donation from the Owen-Carr Township Community Fund for the Helping Hornets project that provides food and clothing for students in need at Christmastime and donations totaling $3,650 for the athletics department backer board.
Another agenda item was approving the administrative contracts.
One change was giving Principal Austin Skutnik a $1,000 increase, and another one was setting the athletic director’s salary at $12,000 and removing some of the health insurance benefits that used to be offered. The latter change saves $2,000 to $3,000, Bane said.
The recent meeting also included a ratification meeting for the collective bargaining agreement on the master contract between the board and Medora Classroom Teachers Association.
Bane said teachers ratified the master contract that was negotiated with them in October, and the board approved giving a $1,000 increase to all certified employees for their contract that started July 1, 2020, and goes through June 30, 2021.
Bane said some of the extracurricular positions that were voluntary had to be removed from the agreement.
Trustees also gave approval for the 2020-21 school improvement plans for the Medora STEM Academy and Medora Junior-Senior High School. Bane said those are around 170 pages apiece.