District 7 buys 1,800 devices for colleges



EDWARDSVILLE – During this week’s District 7 School Board meeting, the board approved the purchase of 1,800 Dell touchscreen laptops for $ 1,024,200.

These devices are part of the 1: 1 Middle School Student Device Initiative in which District 7 hopes to provide devices to all middle school students by the next school year. The district chose the devices based on recommendations during discussions at the working session board meeting earlier this month.

The devices are not Chromebooks, which makes them useful even without Wi-Fi capabilities. The cost also includes cases and warranties for the devices. The district is also working on a program to help educate staff and students on the proper use and maintenance of the devices during the phased rollout scheduled to take place later this school year.

Board Chairman John McDole stressed the importance of this purchase because 14 months ago the district did not provide devices to any staff or students. From now on, all staff, high school students and future college students will have these devices.

Due to staff shortages, especially substitute teachers, the board voted to change the 2021-2022 school calendar to make Friday, November 12 a no-show day to create a four-day weekend. To make up for the day, the district will add May 20 to the end of the school year, ending this Friday with a half day instead of Thursday May 19. District Superintendent Patrick Shelton cited low attendance after a holiday as one of the main reasons for the change as the district often sees many staff and students calling.

The district also approved the 2020-2021 district audit, which is available on the district’s website. Christina Jacquin of Schowalter and Jabouri PC presented the results of the audit. She said the district ended the school year with an operating fund of $ 21.14 million, an increase of about $ 10.18 million from the previous year, and that the designation of the The district’s financial profile improved from review to recognition.

“During the Prop E discussions, being about financial recognition was one of the seemingly unattainable goals,” McDole said.

“While it’s still business as usual, being good stewards of taxpayer dollars, it feels good to be in this place that we thought was somewhat impractical four years ago.”

During the meeting, the council approved the budget resolution and the adoption of the 2021-2022 budget, which is also available on the district’s website. Terri Dalla Riva said the finance committee is still formulating a plan to receive $ 3.7 billion in SR3 funds and $ 910 million in aid specifically to tackle learning loss, so these figures have not yet been included in the current budget.

The board also approved a resolution waiving the administrative fee limit for the 2021-2022 school year. Dalla Riva pointed out that District 7 is in the bottom 25th percentile when it comes to per capita administrative expenditure in surrounding districts. While the district is happy with their lower administrative expenses, she said the wiggle room the resolution will allow is needed to facilitate the changes needed in the years to come.

During the public comment portion of the meeting, two community members addressed the board regarding mask warrants, vaccinations and the recent movement to sue local districts for their decisions. One speaker was in favor of the mask choice, the other was against the waste of district resources due to the retreat on the mask’s mandate.

Another community member spoke to the board about what he considers the school system to be failing for his son who was diagnosed with ADHD in 2010. Due to the five-minute restriction for all members of the audience addressing the council, he could not finish his speech. . The board invited him to email the remainder of his comment to the board or come back to the next board meeting that allows for public comment.

District 7 Director of Curriculum and Education Tara Fox discussed the process by which Senate bills become public documents and enter the classroom, particularly with regard to Senate Bill 818, which is now a public act, which affects sex education in K-12 schools. She went through the details of the process, as well as some details and misinformation regarding the bill. His presentation is available on live video on the District 7 Facebook page starting at 34:53.

Other actions:

• Approved all resignations, retirements and jobs.

• Approved purchase of Panorama Education Platform License, a socio-emotional intervention and monitoring tool that will allow teachers to access data on a student’s attendance, discipline, studies, and social and emotional aspects. personal, classroom, school and district level.

• Approved the declaration of two portable generators as surplus personal property for sale. These generators were purchased two of the four several years ago when ice storms and a tornado necessitated the purchase of portable generators, but further infrastructure improvements made the maintenance costs to keep all four unnecessary. .



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