December 13, 2021, Minutes




Minutes, Annual Meeting of the North Fayette Valley Community School District Board of Education, Monday, December 13, 2021, in the NFV High School Library, 600 N Pine Street, West Union, IA  52142


NFV Board of Education:  Julie Ahrens, Eileen Schlawin, Stacy Cummings, & Carolyn 

Roys.  Emily Koch, LaCresha Schultz, & Marc Rue were 

absent.  Student Members: Nathan Crocker & Claire Britt, 

Sophie Durnan was absent.  

Others: Superintendent: Joe Griffith; Business Manager: Sue 

Thoms; Superintendent Secretary: Susan Winter; Principals: Travis Elliott, Micah Gearhart, Chris Miller, & Lori Westhoff;  Media: Jack Swanson; Staff: Stephanie Vagts, Lisa Schneider, John Bendt, Abigail Conzett, Sherri Imoehl, Sarah Pisney, & Kris Peterson; Public: Rich Klosterman, Sandy Klosterman, & Amanda Rodgers  


President Cummings called the Annual Meeting of the Retiring NFV Board of Education to order at 6 p.m. and Julie Ahrens led the board and audience in the Pledge of Allegiance.


Roll Call of Board members: Ahrens, Cummings, Roys, & Schlawin.   Koch, Rue, & Schultz were absent


The agenda was approved as presented.   Schlawin/Ahrens  Motion Carried 4-0


Public Forum:  President Cummings welcomed and invited comments from the public.   


Sarah Pisney addressed the Board expressing concerns regarding the removal of a flag from a classroom and the implementation of the employee expression policy #401.14.  


Motion to approve the consent agenda with the following items:

  • Minutes of the November 8 regular meeting 
  • Review/approve invoices
  • Approve Financial Reports

Schlawin/Roys  Motion Carried 4-0



Public Hearing for FY22 Budget Amendment:  President Cummings opened the public hearing on the 2021-22 Certified Budget Amendment at 6:08 pm.  No public comments were received and the hearing was closed at 6:09 pm.


The Board approved the FY22 Budget amendment.  Roys/Ahrens  Motion Carried 4-0


The Board reviewed Board Policy #401.14 – Employee Expression.  The Board approved the second reading.  Roys/Ahrens  Motion Carried 4-0   


The Board reviewed the official election results from November 2, 2021, as follows:  District #1 – LaCreasha Schultz, District #2 – Richard Klosterman, District #3 – Amanda Rodgers, District #5 – Eileen Schlawin, and Voted PPEL – Yes 63.28%.


Motion to adjourn at 6:14 pm.   Ahrens/Roys  Motion Carried 4-0


______________________________ _____________________________

Stacy Cummings, President Sue Thoms, Business Manager


Business Manager Thoms called the Organizational Meeting of the New NFV Board of Education to order at 6:15 pm.


Roll Call of Board members:  Ahrens, Cummings, Schlawin, Klosterman, & Rodgers.  Schultz & Koch were absent


Public Forum:  Business Manager Thoms welcomed and invited comments from the public.


Business Manager Thoms administered the Oath of Office to newly elected members.


The agenda was approved as presented with the addition of Chasity Durnan – full-time custodian & Tabitha Molyneux – para.  Schlawin/Ahrens  Motion Carried 5-0


Business Manager Thoms asked for nominations for Board President.  Schlawin nominated Stacy Cummings – Ahrens moved that nominations cease.  Motion Carried 5-0  Stacy Cummings was named Board President.  The Oath of Office was administered and Cummings took over as chair of the meeting.


Cummings asked for nominations for Board Vice President.  Cummings nominated Julie Ahrens – Schlawin moved that nominations cease.   Motion Carried 5-0  Julie Ahrens was named Board Vice-President.  The Oath of Office was administered.


Sue Thoms was appointed as the Board Secretary/Business Manager/Treasurer.  Cummings administered the Oath of Office.


Motion to approve the consent agenda with the following items:

  • Approve Resignations: Sarah Bahe – HS English & Jenny Lee – Elementary PE & Head Volleyball
  • Approve New Hire: Addison Sadler – HS English, Mallory Meyer – School Nurse, & Chasity Durnan – full-time custodian, Tabitha Molyneux – para
  • Volunteer Coach:  Brody Hubbell – Wrestling & Raily Wolfe – Basketball Cheerleading
  • Receive & Approve Gifts: TigerHawk Basketball Club – Boys BB Uniforms, K & K Gardens – Drill Team, & Adelle Henkle – Piano for Fayette Elementary

Schlawin/Ahrens  Motion Carried 5-0



Claire Britt reported on a recent HS pep rally for all sports and activities.  The Drill team competed at state and brought home two 5th place trophies.  Nathan Crocker reported on the Student Council activities with the Business Club for winter activities.  Penny wars and a food drive are currently taking place.  Gunderson and Imperial Roofing will match funds for the penny wars to be given to a local cause.   


Principal reports were received.  Principal Westhoff reported on college enrollment data and the savings that they have by taking their courses while in school, 2 students have recently graduated from NFV, Winter festivities will be held next Wednesday before the break, and 12 Capstone presentations will be held on Tuesday.  Ms. Westhoff also presented information on the disaggregate course and program enrollment data that is reported to the State.  Principal Gearhart reported on the recent Valley Elementary and MS Christmas programs.  An update on the Childcare center was given – at the opening, they were at half capacity and now have a waiting list in the infant room out until 2023. They are appreciative of the partnership.  Study club was held at the end of the quarter to help the students that are behind in coursework.  A new mural is now being put up in the middle school.  A lot of holiday cheer is spreading through the building.  Principal Elliott reported that the students recently attended the musical matinee.   Mrs. Conzett organized an awesome veterans day program at Fayette.  The 4th and 5th grade held their first concert in the PAC since December 2019.  Holiday cheer is spreading throughout the buildings.  Substitutes are hard to find right now and we are doing the very best we can with these circumstances.  Social-Emotional Learning is a focus at WUE and FE right now.    Principal Miller reported on a very busy January coming up.


Business Manager Thoms reported on the 5-year budget projections and Civil Rights reporting which just opened today.    


Superintendent’s report included the following: 

Class size discrepancies between elementary buildings have been brought up by a group of teachers. One idea that has been broached is moving towards grade-like centers where grade levels would be at the same site.  Transportation is a big concern to this.   

NFV is sharing staff currently with South Winneshiek providing supplemental weighting to the district.  Additional opportunities for sharing with area schools would provide additional supplemental weighting.  This would allow us to increase revenue which would help us to reduce our spending reductions.   

Several Labor-Management committee members have been looking at calendar options for next year.  A final version will be presented at the February meeting.

The West Union Elementary HVAC project is moving forward.  The classes in the North wing will be moved back over winter break.  Work on the kitchen will also take place over the break.  During this work in the kitchen, students will have sack lunches.  

In the past two years, NFV has received sizable amounts of one-time funding as Covid relief packages.  State tax revenues have also increased.  There is concern that the legislators will not consider the effects of one-time funding on a school’s budget when determining the state aid for next year.  I encourage you to reach out to the local legislators mentioning how this unusual situation could have a serious impact.  

Utilization of the activity bus that runs from the high school to the middle school after practices have been low over the past year.  No students have ridden since the start of the school year.  Accordingly, we will discontinue this route effective tomorrow.  






The Board named Ahlers and Cooney Law Firm as legal counsel for FY22.  Schlawin/Ahrens  Motion Carried 5-0


The Board authorized Sue Thoms, Business Manager, and Joe Griffith, Superintendent, as signatories on all district accounts.  Ahrens/Schlawin  Motion Carried 5-0


The Board set the time and date for regular board meetings as the 2nd Monday of each month at 5:30 pm.   Schlawin/Ahrens  Motion Carried 5-0


The Board approved the Union Echo Leader as the official newspaper for FY22.  Ahrens/Schlawin   Motion Carried 5-0


The Board approved the Jamf quote for our networking system.  Schlawin/Klosterman  Motion Carried 5-0


The Board approved the AtRisk/DropOut application in the amount of $389,317 for the FY23 school year. This includes Bridges Academy (NFV Alternative School), MS Interventionist, a portion of Guidance Counselors & HS Asst Principal, K-12 Interventions, and Title I overspending.  Ahrens/Schlawin  Motion Carried 5-0


The Board approved bid specifications for a new school bus including seatbelts.   The bus will be purchased outright rather than through a lease-purchase.  Klosterman/Ahrens   Motion Carried 5-0


The Board approved a change order request for the WUE HVAC project.  This includes an $11,456 increase to bypass ducts from supply to return and damper installation and a $7,192 increase to add a drop ceiling and lighting in the lunchroom mezzanine.  Schlawin/Rodgers  Motion Carried 5-0


The Board approved a proposal from Midwest Engineering for engineering and planning of the first phase of the HS HVAC update. Ahrens/Klosterman   Motion Carried 5-0


Supt Griffith reported that a middle school student has requested to practice with the high school team.  Based on increased liability, conflict with practice space, and honoring the middle school (wrestling/basketball) split season, he recommends that NFV does not allow middle school students to participate in high school practices.  Klosterman made the motion to not allow middle school students to practice with high school students, with Schlawin as the second.  Motion Carried 4-1 (Rodgers)


Mr. Schacherer and Mr. Bendt are proposing a band/vocal trip to St. Louis from April 8-10.  The Board approved the trip to St Louis.  Fundraising efforts are already underway to help with costs.   Schlawin/Ahrens  Motion Carried 5-0





Motion to adjourn at 7:04 pm.  Schlawin/Rodgers  Motion Carried 5-0


______________________________ _____________________________

Stacy Cummings, President Sue Thoms, Business Manager