The Killdeer School Board is still reviewing land options for a potential new school, to which the board expressed frustration. The district plans to ask the community for its feedback in an upcoming survey, but it wants to wait until the land is secured, as the location will be a factor in the survey.
“I know we need to wait for land, but this is killing me … I know it’s a concern, but we have to get that information because if it comes back and it’s says that it’s a no, we need to scrap everything and start all over again,” said school board member Pamla Kukla.
The board discussed releasing the potential location in the survey, making it clear that it is the proposed area, but ultimately decided to wait until the land is secured. They are also waiting on the land before arranging a meeting with the city to see if it would be willing to contribute to the project in some way.
Superintendent Gary Wilz went over the highlights of the financial reports from the previous year with the board.
"We are entering next year in good shape," he said.
The district has retained more money in both its general and building funds compared to the previous year. Last year, it retained $2.3 million in its general fund; this year, it retained $2.7 million. Last year, it retained $1.8 million in its building fund; this year, it retained $2 million.
The district also reduced the average cost per student from last year’s $11,593 to this year’s $11,092. Wilz said that is an indication that the number of students per class is increasing.
"My concerns for next year are the huge number of staff members that we're adding to the overall budget because of essentially getting to three sections in the high school for many things, and several other three-section classrooms at the elementary (school), but based on our kid numbers and foundation aid, I think we're going to be fine for next year," he said.
The board approved a few fee changes for the new year. Wilz recommended increasing the lunch price by a nickel and the driver's education course fee from $165 to $175. They will begin giving a discount for seniors aged 60 and older.
"We're getting more and more requests for a break on senior citizen ticket prices coming into the gate," Wilz said. "Instead of $6, it'd be $5, and if they're here for junior high, instead of $3, it would be $2."
The Board has elected Larry Lundberg as chairman/president and Levi Bang as vice president for the 2019-2020 term.
School board meetings for the 2019-2020 were also established.
The meetings will typically be the second Wednesday of each month at 7:00 pm, with some exceptions. In November, December, January and February, the meetings will begin at 5:30 pm. The established meeting dates for the 2019-2020 school year are: Aug. 14, Sept. 11, Oct. 9, Nov. 13, Dec. 11, Jan. 8, Feb. 12, March 11, April 8, May 13, June 10 and July 15.
The district will have its Back to School Picnic on Aug. 19 from 4-6 pm.