The Converse County School District #1 school board convened to a packed house on March 14, 2017. Students, parents, and patrons attended the meeting to express concerns about potential cuts to the school district budget as a result of declining student enrollment and additional cuts imposed by the legislature as they attempt to tackle a deficit in state education funding. There were a number of students from the high school who expressed concern about cutting the woods program and the drafting class. There were also concerns expressed by members of the high school swim program and their parents. The bulk of the comments to the board centered around these two proposed cuts; however, there were also comments about cutting cheerleading and other proposed reductions. The board was very appreciative of the large crowd who attended and offered input. Board chairman Brad Reese let the crowd know that the decision to reduce any program is a difficult one, but cuts need to be made because of the reduced state funding to the district.
High school English teacher Melina Foster was honored as the Spotlight Employee of the Month. High school principal Dan Edwards stated, “What you witness is a staff member who has high expectations for her students along with a great deal of compassion. Mrs. Foster delivers instruction each day that will make a difference in students’ lives.” Mrs. Foster, although a long-time teacher at Douglas High School, continues to be a learner herself as she is pursuing an additional endorsement in communications to continue to teach concurrent enrollment courses which benefit students. Other duties are part of Mrs. Foster’s work including serving as English department chair and serving on a number of committees and councils.
Douglas Middle School principal Ryan Mackey acknowledged a very generous donation by Diane Harrop through the Wyoming Community Foundation. A $10,000 grant was awarded to the Product Development and Manufacturing (PD & M) class at DMS. Such a substantial grant would not be possible without the innovation, generosity, and dedication of Don Glaser, Diane Harrop and the DGW Donor Advised Endowment Fund of the Wyoming Community Foundation. The Wyoming Community Foundation is a charitable organization that builds and preserves funds established by individuals, families, organizations, agencies, and private foundations. The Community Foundation uses the earnings from these funds to benefit community needs across the state of Wyoming. The students and staff of Douglas Middle School PD&M classes are honored and humbled to be selected for such a prestigious award.
In other business the board read policies regarding staff fringe benefits and rules of practice governing contests before the board concerning the suspension, termination and dismissal of professional staff members. The board adopted a revised reduction in force policy for certified and classified staff. Some student support services contracts were renewed. Finally, new hires, resignations and transfers along with administrator contracts for next year were approved as presented.