Lamar RE-2 School Board Meeting May 13, 2024

The Board approved minutes of the regular board meeting of April 8, 2024 as well as a special board meeting of April 23, 2024.  Thank you notes were received from Kim Hess Marples and family as well as Lysandra Rios Quintana and were read to Board members..  There were no persons wishing to have an audience with the Board at the meeting.

Brandon Adamson, Lamar Middle School Principal, gave an update about events that students have participated in.  At Showcase Night, the 6th graders had a mock “Shark Tank”, where they presented ideas similar to those on the television show of the same name.  He said it was a great success and students had some very great ideas and prototypes that they presented.  They also took a field trip to the zoo.  The 7th graders did a unit on concentration camps, which later tied into a field trip to Camp Amache with a museum visit and tour of the grounds.  The class used math skills to draw the camp to scale.  The 8th graders did a unit on job interests, where they explored different career paths.  As a follow-up, the class visited LCCs campus to learn more about potential job interests.  Mr. Adamson also gave updates on the sports programs at the school, including the new baseball program.

Greg Eddy, Lamar High School Principal, updated the Board with various awards the band and choir received, as well as DECA students and sports programs.  He spoke of the proposed addition of an 8th period for next year’s school year, which the Board felt would be a good idea.

Speaking next were this year’s 3 student board members, Drew Durst, Vanessa Chairez and Hallie Mackey.  As this was the first year for the innovative addition, the Board was anxious to hear their thoughts about their experience as well as things they liked about it and anything that they felt was a negative.  All 3 students spoke about what an insightful experience it was for them.  Drew said that the adult Board members validated the students’ positions there.  He mentioned that they really had no idea what to expect going into the year and that things like having assigned seats and nameplates made them feel like the Board accepted them and their ideas openly and that they felt appreciated.  He went on to say that the experience helped them gain confidence in bringing in new ideas, knowing that their voices were being heard.  Vanessa reiterated much of this, adding that learning about the process of how a school board works interested her greatly, from the gavel opening the meeting to learning how and why decisions were made.  She felt that the students had a great connection with the Board and that they felt heard.  Hallie also said she loved the “inner workings” of the school system and how decisions were made in the Board room and why.  She mentioned the stadium project as a highlight of the year for her and that she felt the meetings were run efficiently.  She said she loved being on the board and being a representative for her school.  All 3 students thanked the Board and singled out Superintendent Dr. Chad Krug, saying that he “cultivates an open environment” and that learning about decisions directly at the table vs. hearing about them “down the pipeline” was invaluable.   They then gave some suggestions to the board regarding their replacement student board member for next school year, mentioning that giving the students more of an idea as to what to expect would be helpful.  They mentioned that many students at the high school don’t know that the student board positions even exist and suggested introducing the program to the various schools would help with that.  The students were given gifts of gavels to commemorate their service.  Dr. Krug thanked the students for all of their work and input throughout the year, calling them a “beautiful snapshot of the student body”.   Board President Lanie Meyers-Mireles also thanked the students, stating that “we couldn’t have asked for a better inaugural year” for the program and that she felt the students did a phenomenal job.  Board Member Jake Chamberlain joked that at times he felt like “you should have been sitting here” to the students, as he pointed to his own chair.  All members agreed that the students were a wonderful addition to the Board and the program was highly successful.

The Board approved the elimination of kindergarten paraprofessionals at Washington Elementary and one 5th grade position at Parkview.  They approved an additional ESL certified teacher at Parkview for the 2024-2025 school year.  Various retirements, transfers and resignations were also approved.  They approved hirings of several teachers and coaches and approved renewal of contracts for probationary teachers for the 2024-2025 school year.

By Barbara Crimond

Filed Under: EducationFeaturedSchoolYouth


About the Author: