CAUTION RULES AT LATEST MEETING
by Maureen Soso
Times are tough and luxury items were nowhere to be found on Tuesday night’s Monmouth-Rosedale school board agenda. While some of the items subject to approval were routine, like the approval of new school personnel, other topics came under fire. One hot-button issue discussed and disapproved was the changing of the names of local schools to encourage unity among the community. A move that would have required new funding. “We shouldn’t spend any money until we get our financial legs under us,” said David Clark. While several other board members believed it would bring a positive shift to the Monmouth culture, the majority ruled it would be unnecessary and bring about expenses that the district cannot afford.
While most of the meeting was filled with questions about budget, the school board seemed to be moving in a very cautious but correct direction for this upcoming school year. One major hole in their agenda came from the Governor Quinn’s Proposal of the Illinois 2010-2011 budget. Since there is a chance that the Illinois legislature could act on a six month budget, there could be a significant change in the school’s budget come January. Therefore, the 1% sales-tax increase approval was also set aside until further information was brought to the board.
Another school issue being voted on was the upcoming 2010-2011 school calendar, and board members approached the topic with severe caution. Several suggestions were made in regards to correlating breaks among school districts as well as different levels, but members were disagreeing on who to shape the break toward: students, parents, or faculty. While members took precaution as to not anger any of the groups, a motion was made to forward the decision until surveys were sent out to parents asking them their opinion.
The meeting adjourned after over two hours, with a lot of vital information for the upcoming year still not set in stone.