According to the school board’s published agenda, they have a full schedule.
A highlight of the consent agenda is consideration of a proposal to install new gymnasium lighting in Raytown High School as well as in Raytown and Raytown South middle schools. The purpose of replacing the old lighting is to make the gyms brighter and to save energy. Funding for this project would come from the Kansas City Power and Light Company, which offers rebates for energy-reduction projects.
Superintendent Allan Markley‘s report will also feature energy conservation news. As well as reporting on the results of the first full year of the district’s energy reduction program, he will report on Raytown’s graduation rate and the lawsuit regarding transfers from Kansas City, Missouri public schools.
According to the energy conservation report, Raytown used almost 20 percent less energy in the last year than it did the year before, amounting to about half a million dollars in savings. Utilities are often one of a district’s largest expenses, second only to staff salaries.
Also in his report, the superintendent will explain differences between the way the district has calculated its graduation rate in the past and the way the U.S. Department of Education now requires that rate to be calculated. In the past, states had varied calculation methods. The Department of Education is requiring the change to a uniform method so that it can compare graduation rates among states. One result of the change is that some districts’ graduation rates may appear to decline. For example, Raytown’s rate last year was 83.2 percent using the old method and would have been 76.69 percent using the new method.
Raytown is one of six districts suing the Kansas City, Missouri Board of Education regarding its transfer policy, and Superintendent Markley will update the board regarding this lawsuit. On the Friday before Christmas Eve, administrators of five local districts (one joined the suit later) filed a petition asking the Jackson County courts to delay transfer of students from the Kansas City, Missouri schools, which lost accreditation New Year’s Day. Earlier in December, Kansas City’s Board of Education approved a transfer policy conflicting with the policies of other area districts. Raytown and the other plaintiffs are seeking legal clarification of policy differences relating to tuition payments and student transportation. Although Jackson County Circuit Court Judge W. Brent Powell denied a temporary injunction seeking to prevent student transfers until the lawsuit is concluded, he will hear the case in court next Thursday, Jan. 12.
In unfinished business carried over from the December meeting, the board will consider approving a 2012 legislative platform for the district. The platform would serve to guide lobbyists working on behalf of the district during this year’s session of the Kansas State Legislature, which convenes today in Topeka.
The Board of Education meeting, which is open to the public, will take place in the district’s Administration Building; 6608 Raytown Road; Raytown, MO 641133.
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