The regular board meeting on Monday, February 20th, tackled several regular business items,
including approval of meeting minutes, expenditures, and payroll.
We also approved hiring an assistant cook and a part-time position in the business office.
Pamela filled the assistant cook vacancy. As planned and budgeted, the time had come to hire a support person for the district clerk. Emily will be taking on general billing and payroll tasks.
Welcome, Pamela and Emily! We are grateful for all the hard work and additional training our
district clerk has taken on. We are excited for Dennice to have additional support for such a
large job. We wish the best to Mrs. Teich, a valued paraprofessional at the elementary school,
who submitted her resignation as she moves out of the area. She will be missed.
A parent asked about a recent Art/PE guest speaker at the middle school during public
comment. Principal McIntyre was able to help inform us all that while the guest speaker, artist
Jessy Hansen, did talk about homelessness, it was because her work has focused on drawing
the hands of people in our community, including the unhoused because everyone’s hands tell a
story. The middle school art class is currently working on “hands” art pieces. Principal McIntyre
connected with the artist through a local Lakeside Community Club meeting. Hansen’s most
recent community pop-up exhibition was titled “The Home We Carry: A Visual Anthology of the
Unhoused.” The PE/Art classes combined because the speaker could only come for one day. If
you have further questions about this guest speaker, please contact Superintendent Joe Price.
Staff, administrators, and committee reports highlighted the “Run, Lock, Fight” training held at
LES. Teachers commented that while the training is very intense, our SRO, Officer Sullivan, did
an excellent job leading the training and supporting the teachers throughout the process. A local response to an emergency situation would take less than 6 minutes for responders to reach our schools. For school incidents, on- and off-duty officers respond from the highway patrol, Flathead County Sheriff’s office, and Kalispell Police Department. Board member Sean Banks suggested that the district ask local emergency responders to physically familiarize themselves with our campuses when students are not at school as another proactive measure to ensure all parties were best prepared in case of an actual emergency.
At SMS, excitement is growing for new opportunities in the ag and consumer science electives
that are being explored through grants and field trips. Gratitude for a wonderful gymnasium was given, especially as ice has made most outdoor spaces dangerous for recess times.
The Finance Committee met to check in on district finances. The clerk, superintendent, and
committee are working together to refine the reporting needs of the district to the board of
trustees. They also noted that the annual audit is in process. There is no Finance Committee
meeting planned for March.
The Building Committee will plan to meet in April when they have a total estimate and building
plans for a potential expansion of the Lakeside parking lot. This meeting date will be set at the
March General Board meeting.
The rest of the meeting was devoted to discussing what board members perceive as the top
priorities for the board for the remainder of the year and as we look to the future. Student
achievement is always the number one priority! In addition, board members highlighted several
practical actions to continue to support student learning and our schools: spending time in the
schools; building relationships with the community and staff; ensuring financial stability and
accountability; examining pay and benefits packages of all staff with a focus on teacher
retention and recruitment; and building institutional leadership which can include long term
planning. Staff and parent surveys are currently being created to explore these ideas further and provide an opportunity for feedback from some of our most important stakeholders - you! Watch your inbox for these surveys to arrive in April.
As always, our meetings are open to the public, and we welcome your presence. In addition, all
board member emails are linked on the school website if you have any questions or feedback in
● Disciplinary and Public Relations Committee - March 8th, 2 PM @ SMS Conference
● Curriculum and Extra Curricular/PIR-CP Committee - March 14th, 2:30 PM @ SMS
● Regular Board Meeting - March 20th, 6 pm @ LES Music Room
Have a great weekend,