B-OPS School Board approves change in superintendent’s annual salary on split vote

Increase in business office services from Clifton Larson Allen



At the Monday, October 23 meeting of the Butterfield-Odin Public School (B-OPS) School Board, its members reopened discussion on the annual salary of B-OPS Superintendent Ray Arsenault.

The decision to take up the .5 (2½ days per week) contract of the superintendent was originally made at the Monday, September 25 regular meeting of the board, with the majority agreeing to discuss the Long Term Disability Insurance Article VII Section 3 part in the contract at the school government body’s October monthly meeting.

On a split 4-2 vote (yes – Kristy Haseman, Shannon Sykes, Renae Meyer and Pam Xayaphonesongkham, no – Joel Penner and Andy Pierson, absent-Leon Wenner) the decision was made to replace the $4,156.92 cost of Long Term Disability Insurance and add that amount to the superintendent’s annual salary amount.

That portion of the superintendent’s contract sets the annual salary of $73,156.92 for 2017-2018, $75,156.92 for 2018-2019 and $77,156.923 for 2019-2020. During the term of this contract, the annual salary may be modified, but shall not be reduced. The annual salary is paid in 26 equal installments during the contract year.

Business office services from CliftonLarsonAllen increased

Board members were also divided on increasing business office services from the accountancy firm of CliftonLarsonAllen and Business Manager Lindsey Heine.

Approving the move were Haseman, Sykes, Meyer and Xayaphonesongkham, with Pierson and Penner opposed.

Changes to the services will include:

  • Salary increase of $12,900 (effective December 1, 2017), moving annual fees from $50,400 to $63,300.
  • Increased Business Manager hours from 120 hours per year to 384 hours per year.
  • Changed Business Manager schedule from 10 hours per month on-site to 16 hours a month on-site and 16 hours per month off-site.
  • Exchange in travel time for productive time.
  • Increased analysis of budget to actual variance.
  • Increased availability to meet with the superintendent and principal.
  • Increased detail in financial oversight.
  • Allowance of development of long-term plans for each department.
  • Increased involvement in the grant application process.
  • Increased responsiveness to requests from the School District Office.
  • Unchanged will be the scope of an outsourced staff accountant, payroll and Human Resources (HR) services.
In other business

+ Postponed approving a new combined Mission/Vision Statement until a whole plan is presented by the Building and Leadership Team as created at a Strategic Planning meeting. The next meeting of the Building and Leadership Team is scheduled for Wednesday, November 15, at 3:15 p.m.

+ Approved Science teacher Annie Peterson’s revised resignation date to December 8.

+ Approved giving the full-time Science teacher position to Matthew Swanson. Swanson is a recent Master’s Degree program graduate from Minnesota State University-Mankato. Swanson’s salary will be $41,889, pro-rated upon his start date.

+ Awarded the snow removal bid to Andy’s Auto Repair of Butterfield at a metered $95 per hour.

+ Approved the advertisement for a paraprofessional to work with kindergarten students and/or other duties.

+ Heard the superintendent’s report:

  • Noted that the school district’s Fund Balance is “satisfactory” at $820,000.
  • Raised idea of purchasing CDs next year.
  • Discussed the THRIVE lunch program.
  • Noted that the special education audit was excellent with just two findings.
  • Reported that the current pre-K-to-grade 12 enrollment is 210.

+ Heard a report from B-OPS K-12 Principal Greg Ewing:

  • Noted that the Building Leadership Team that had gone through the Strategic Planning process would like the board to accept the group’s recommendation to combine the district’s current Mission and Vision statements into one Vision Statement. That proposed statement would read: The Butterfield-Odin Public School, in partnership with our families, provides a welcoming environment for all learners to demonstrate respect, to learn responsibility and to take pride in achieving academic excellence by becoming life-long learners.
  • Reported that on Staff Development Day on Wednesday, October 18, elementary school staff worked on creating curriculum maps for math, while secondary staff created curriculum maps for implementing new ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) Standards into each of their own curriculums, with specific writing assignments that meet the standards.
  • Reported that Parent/Teacher Conferences are slated for Wednesday, November 1 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Noted that pictured retakes will be held on Wednesday, November 8 from 7:45 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
  • Shared that the Veterans Day Program will be held in the school gym on Friday, November 10, at 10:30 a.m., with a lunch to follow.
  • Reported that the next Saints Time Day is Thursday, November 16. This is a time when grade level advisors check student progress, and reports are sent home if necessary.
  • Noted donations – Triumph State Bank of Butterfield, $500 for elementary school supplies and $300 for the Student Council Respect Store; Tim Grefe, personal donation of $100 for the Respect Store and Odin State Bank/Bob Harder, $500 for elementary school supplies.

+ Heard committee reports, including from Haseman and Sykes of the Negotiation Committee. Meetings will be held Monday, November 6 (ground rules set) and Monday, November 20, both at 5:30 p.m.

+ Heard from Tammy Wolle, former B-OPS School Board Member, district resident and mother of a B-OPS high school student, concerning the contract of the school nurse, along with additional questions on other issues during Public Forum. Wolle wondered why there was no agenda item pertaining to the school nurse. [At the Monday, August 21 regular meeting of the Mountain Lake Public School (MLPS) School Board, its members approved the shared nursing contract with B-OPS for the 2017-2018 school year. MLPS holds the contract for Lana Sander, school nurse, with one of the five days of the week being used by B-OPS (Wednesday). Her salary is $43,600, with the B-OPS share 20%, or $10,264.50. However, at that meeting the MLPS School Board also discussed the need for a full-time nurse in the district due to increased enrollment. In a report from MLPS Superintendent Bill Strom to board members at the Monday, October 16 regular board meeting, Strom noted that he had spoken to B-OPS Superintendent Ray Arsenault about possible adjustments to the shared nursing contract between the two school districts for the 2017-2018 school year. Strom stated that he had asked if MLPS could get out of the current nursing agreement due to increasing needs in the student body. Strom also said that MLPS would honor the agreement and cooperate in any way to find a suitable replacement for B-OPS.] Wolle’s additional questions to the board included: Why is more money going for administration costs than to students? What extra/elective classes are being offered besides gym, music and computer? What happened to Change 4 students? Why are board items not first placed as informative on one meeting’s agenda before action/decision is made at the next meeting, as agreed upon previously by board members?

+ The next regular monthly school board meeting will be Monday, November 27, at 7 p.m. in the Media Room.





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