Along with the hiring of a new superintendent, the IVC District 321 School Board also approved a project that has been in the making for a while at Saturday's meeting at Illinois Valley Central High School.
Mossville School will undergo a $3.34 million renovation, which includes both renovation and an addition.
The project will not only improve the school's façade, but it will add on to the front of the junior high doors as a new entrance.
A new office, with a secure entryway like the other district buildings, as well as a sick room is also featured. The school library will be expanded and renovated and the hallways will be improved.
New sketches of what the school will look like when finished will be available at the board's next meeting, Polyak said. Weather permitting, officials plan to break ground as early as February or March.
Hein Construction was awarded the contract, who also completed work at the high school.
Months ago, the bids came back too high for the project, so it was re-bid again, this time coming into the district's budget.
DEM Services was awarded the asbestos abatement project, correlating to the construction.
To fund the project, the board approved debt certificates of $4,075,000. Polyak explained that funding the project is similar to the other projects that have happened around the district. Every few years, the district retires debt from a project, which then allows money for another project, without increasing property taxes.
In other items, the school board:
• Met with district administration for its annual long-range planning to discuss issues relating to finance, curriculum, transportation, facilities and activities. Polyak said much of the time was focused on "fiscal problems in the state of Illinois and appropriate responses."
President Mike Denzer added, "We received great feedback from our administrators on how we can make sure we continue to deliver a quality, educational program for our kids, make sure that we're understanding what taxpayers are facing right now and how we best spend their money. Those issues are going to be discussed into the future."
• Heard an update from Sharon Padilla of the IVC Educational Foundation. The foundation is currently raising funds for a library modernization project since it is done with the SMART Board project. The project includes adding tablet computers in the libraries for students and teachers and e-Readers for student check out. IVC librarian Tom Gross has assisted the project with receiving a grant for about $60,000.
To raise funds for the project, the foundation is planning a Winter Wonderland, which is a catered dinner, entertainment, live and silent auctions and more. About $8,300 in sponsorships already have been secured for the event. For more information, visit the foundation's website at www.ivcef.org.
Page 2 of 2 - • Approved six retirements: Joe Binstock, part-time CTE teacher at IVC High School; Dave Corrington, custodian at CEC; Maggie Girot, English teacher at IVCHS; Jennie Hawkey, curriculum director for the district; Pat Trent, counselor at IVCHS; and Karen Zichterman, school psychologist for Mossville and IVCHS.
Together, the retirements represented 143 years of service to the IVC school district. Polyak noted that Binstock had retired and then came back part-time.
• Approved hiring Emily Masterman as the gifted teacher at Mossville, which makes her full time as she currently is the junior high vocal teacher.
• Heard Polyak mention that he, IVCHS Principal Kenton Bergman and school board member Nell German attended the IMEA performance by the jazz band and choir.
"It's one of the proudest moments I've had as superintendent here. They were phenomenal. It was a packed room, people standing around the back, and the quality of music and what these kids did was just amazing," said Polyak.