The Grain Valley School Board voted to approve the issuance and sale of $8 million in general obligation bonds during its July 16th meeting. The board plans to issue another $6.5 million in bonds in January. The bond sale is a result of the $14 million bond issue passed on June 2nd.
Superintendent Dr. Marc Snow informed the board it would be 2024 before another bond issue could be considered.
Improvements and construction around the district are in full swing, ranging from a soft remodel and carpet upgrade at Sni-A-Bar Elementary, to the renovation of the high school’s performing arts center and new parking lot on the east side of the high school.
Assistant Superintendent of Academic Services Beth Mulvey updated the board on summer school, stating the students and teachers were both eager and excited to return to the classroom and are managing COVID-19 related changes well.
“Students deal with the mask requirement much better than adults do,” Mulvey said.
Board member Jeff Coleman raised the issue of how the schools are monitoring how students who have an exemption from wearing masks are being treated by other students. Coleman shared he has an exemption to Jackson County’s mask mandate due to health reasons.
“I’m one of the exemptions, but if I don’t wear a mask, everyone just swarms on me. I just want to know how are we treating those kids with other kids who may be giving them a hard time for not wearing a mask,” Coleman said.
“I’ve not had any reports of anyone being mistreated. However, we’ve only had three students out of the entire summer school population request an exemption, and no teachers,” Mulvey said.
“We’ll take care of that the same way we take care of any bullying incident. Fortunately, it hasn’t been an issue.”
The district anticipates releasing plans regarding the 2020-21 school year later this week. Families were asked this summer to indicate whether they intended to return to the classroom or request a virtual option.
“If a child is going to be virtual to start the school year, we’re going to ask them to make at least a nine week commitment on that,” Dr. Brad Welle, Deputy Superintendent of Student and Community Services, said.
Welle indicated he has talked with several families regarding concerns and emphasized the district is simply asking families to indicate their intentions at this point so administrators can plan accordingly. As of last week’s meeting, 65 families had requested to participate in a virtual option.
“Parents get to change their mind. It’s too important a decision for us to lock them in at this point. We’re just trying to plan ahead, so we’re asking people now what their intention is,” Welle said.
In other business, the Education Foundation’s golf tournament has been postponed to October 16th due to COVID-19.