News and notes from Jan. 16 North Tama school board

Retirements, 8-Player football, bond referendum among items addressed

North Tama County Community School District. TELEGRAPH FILE PHOTO

1. As part of the consent agenda, the retirement of two veteran teachers — K-12 vocal teacher Terry Shay and elementary counselor Teresa O’Meara — was approved effective at the end of the school year. Following the motion to approve, board member David Calderwood spoke briefly about Shay and O’Meara’s retirements, recognizing their dedication and service to the district.

2. Secondary Principal Taylor Howard reported to the board that after studying the effects of moving WIN time away from the end of the day beginning with this school year, the decision had been made to move WIN time back to the end of the school day beginning with the 2023-24 school year.

3. The board approved ending the transportation director sharing agreement with the Hudson Community School District, an agreement that provided Hudson with 10 hours total. The agreement once gave North Tama five additional FTE students as part of supplementary weighting but now only provides four additional FTE students, Supt. David Hill said. North Tama’s current transportation director is Joel Larsen. The district’s curriculum director sharing agreement with Gladbrook-Reinbeck was left as is.

4. In an update regarding the decision to slowly move JH/JV football from Class A/11-Player to 8-Player beginning with the 2023-24 season (while leaving varsity at Class A), athletic director Taylor Wurth informed the board he had scheduled one 8-Player away game with Don Bosco for next season and was working to do the same with Gladbrook-Reinbeck which would leave the remaining six JH/JV games at 11-Player. Wurth said part of his reasoning for adding only away games the first year was to avoid having to paint yellow lines on Dennis Field if 8-Player games were played in Traer. In the second year, Wurth felt adding more 8-Player games including at home would be an option. The idea of playing 8-Player JH/JV games at McDermott Field east of town was brought up by board member David Boldt. Wurth responded that the idea was feasible and could be done in the second year – “to me that seems more sensible,” Wurth said.

5. Under the superintendent’s report, Supt. Hill shared he was working on a variety of outreach activities as part of the district’s $14.25 million bond referendum set for special election on Tuesday, March 7. In the coming weeks, Hill said he plans to attend several community meetings to share information about the bond vote including with the Traer Lions Club, the Traer Chamber of Commerce, and the PTO. Hill also plans to have an information table set up during Redhawk basketball’s senior night on Tuesday, Jan. 24. A community information meeting was tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 21 beginning at 6:30 p.m. in the cafeteria. Hill was currently working with the Tama Co. Auditor’s office to schedule satellite voting for Friday, Feb. 24 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Traer Fire Station to coincide with the department’s annual fish fry. Hill also discussed with the board making GOTV (‘Get Out The Vote’) calls either the Sunday before or the night before election day on Tuesday, March 7. “This is our one chance to do this and do it right,” Hill said before later stating he felt the bond referendum was some of “the most important work” he has done thus far at North Tama.