From left: Amy Bybee, principal, and Gerica Bankson, teacher, from Grand Star Elementary; Shelly Serrioz, administrative secretary, and Linda Miesner, principal, from Pioneer Ridge Middle School. Bankson and Serrioz were recognized as USD 231 Shining Stars for the fourth quarter. Photo courtesy of Rick Poppitz


Rick Poppitz
Special to The Gardner News
USD 231 Board of Education met on May 15 and considered realigning district boundaries and an increase in special education budget fund.
In addition, Gerica Bankson, teacher at Grand Star Elementary and Shelly Serrioz, administrative secretary at Pioneer Ridge Middle School, were recognized as USD 231 Shining Star staff members for the fourth quarter.

Republication of Special Ed Budget
Jeremy McFadden, finance director, presented staff request to republish the FY 2016-17 Special Education Budget authority.
We have identified an adjustment that needs to be made in our special education budget authority,” he said
The initial special ed budget adopted in August 2016 was $11,000,030.
An increase in the budget fund requires republication.
Staff requested approval to publish public notice.
There would be a public hearing at the June 12 school board meeting where staff will request increasing that budget to $11,520,000.
McFadden said there had been a four fold increase in the number of students needing special services.
“This does not impact the local mill rate – this is just simply the amount that we’re able to spend in our special education fund”, McFadden said.
The board approved the request.

Changing Boundaries
Jody Marshall, human resources director, told the board that the district had been notified by the Johnson County Election office that a few specific district boundaries are not in compliance with state law, because they didn’t follow census track or voting precinct boundaries
Marshall said previous election boards didn’t catch the discrepancies.
“At this point, to be in compliance with state statute, we have to make these changes. They really are not optional” said Marshall.
The statute referred to is K.S.A. 72-6769.
Robert Schwartz, RSA planning consultants, explained the statute and the proposed solution.
A map displayed showed three rectangular areas that were not in compliance. Two are around Waverly Road and the other around Gardner Lake.
Schwartz said realigning the boundaries in these areas just required some small changes.
The board voted to accept the boundary changes.