December 14, 2020 Board Minutes




Minutes, Annual Meeting of the North Fayette Valley Community School District Board of Education, Monday, December 14, 2020 in the NFV High School Performing Arts Center, 600 N Pine St, West Union, IA  52175


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

LaCreasha McNeese, Carolyn Roys, Marc Rue, & Emily

Koch.  Student Members:  Nathan Crooker & Kailee

Ginger.  Baylie Shrubb & Madison Clausen were absent.


Others:            Superintendent: Joe Griffith, Business Manager: Sue

Thoms, Superintendent Secretary:  Susan Winter, Principals:  Micah Gearhart, Travis Elliott, & Lori Westhoff, Curriculum Director: Betsy Nefzger, Public: Megan Molseed – media, Ron Ahrens, Carter Schlawin, and others by Microsoft Teams


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


Roll Call of Board members: Ahrens, Cummings, Schlawin, McNeese, Koch, Roys & Rue.


The agenda was approved as presented.  Schlawin/Ahrens Motion Carried 7-0


Motion to approve the consent agenda with the following items:

  • Minutes of the November 9, 2020 regular meeting
  • Review/approve invoices
  • Approve Financial Reports

Rue/Roys  Motion Carried 7-0





Motion to adjourn at 6:02 pm.   Roys/Ahrens Motion Carried 7-0


______________________________        _____________________________

Stacy Cummings, President                Sue Thoms, Business Manager


Business Manager Thoms called the Annual Meeting of the New NFV Board of Education to order at 6:02 p.m.


Roll Call of Board members: Ahrens, Cummings, Schlawin, McNeese, Koch, Roys, & Rue.


The agenda was approved as presented with the addition of Rachel Strong’s  resignation as assistant softball coach and the hiring of Andy Larson for water treatment testing.  Schlawin/Koch Motion Carried 7-0


Business Manager Thoms asked for nominations for Board President.  Koch nominated Cummings – Ahrens moved that nominations cease.  Motion Carried 7-0  Stacy Cummings was named as 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.  Julie Ahrens was nominated unanimously.   Cummings administered the Oath of Office.


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: Brent Kuker  – Head Softball & Rachael Strong – Asst Softball
  • Approve New Hire: Stephanie Wagner– FB Cheerleading additional pay
  • Approve Volunteer:  Elise Vandersee  – Bowling
  • Gifts – Play donations – Kamaus & McGrane, Wrestling pallets – Dan Miller Agency, & PPE – Bethel Presbyterian Church

Roys/Ahrens Motion carried 7-0



Student Ex-Officio member reports were received.   Nathan Crocker – students are getting ready for the holiday break.  Can drive and poinsettia sales are complete for the Junior Class post prom.  Kailee Ginger – online classes are going well.


Principal Reports were received.  Principal Elliott reported on the rock painting at the elementaries.  Holiday spirit is in full swing for the kids to bring some normalcy.  Principal Gearhart reported on 12 days of Kindness and 12 days of Giving at the Valley Campus.  Day care is going well and gaining kids.  Principal Westhoff reported that first semester Capstone presentations will be held tomorrow, everyone survived a week without internet, basketball and wrestling are being live streamed, Danceline received a division 1 rating at state in the Kick category, Holiday concert will be livestreamed on Monday, and Fall play will be livestreamed on Friday.  There is a decrease in activity fund revenue with lack of in person attendance.  Bowling is also live streamed.  Having kids in the buildings all 5 days of the week is a huge advantage.


Curriculum report was received.  Spending time on closing the gap of loss of learning from the Spring.  There may be some additional needs for younger students with the curriculum.


Business Manager Thoms gave an update of the CARES Act funds and year end activities in the Business Office.


Superintendent’s report included the following:

– Thanks to Alex and Tracy while the internet was down – not expected but we have people in place to get things fixed.

– West Union Elementary HVAC system – The building has newer steam boilers.  The older (1959) unit vents and pipes are wearing out. We have to be careful with the amount of pressure that is put on the system, which will limit the heating capacity of the system.  We have talked with Piper Sandler today and have looked at many options.  At this moment, it looks like borrowing against upcoming SAVE funds would be a good option to help with some of our upcoming facilities needs

– AJ & Associates – We have received a proposal to conduct a facilities analysis of our buildings.  This will provide a review of our HVAC, utilities, safety systems, structural systems, energy efficiency, and asbestos.  This service, costing $9,525 plus reimbursables will be translated into a prioritized ‘to do list’.  We do not think it will take very long to get a prioritized report.

– 2021-2022 Calendar – Supt Griffith has been working with the calendar committee – they have narrowed it down to several options.  They will bring this to the Board in January.

– COVID Update – The 14 day positivity rate has been declining since Thanksgiving – the number of quarantined staff and students has reflected this decline.  MS activities have been allowed to resume with the same precautions as the high school.  Once the positivity rate reaches below 10%, outside organizations will be able to resume use of the school facilities.  NFV will continue to maintain the mask requirement for all individuals that enter our buildings.

Wednesday, 3 hour early dismissals will be extended through the end of the 3rd quarter.

– We have received 9 applications for early retirement.  A couple of those positions are hard to fill.

– We are going to advertise for a strength and conditioning coach – a recommendation will come to the Board in January or February.



The Board approved Ahlers and Cooney as primary legal counsel for FY21 as well as Jerem White for local issues. Roys/Ahrens   Motion Carried 7-0


The Board approved authorizing Business Manager Thoms and Superintendent Griffith as signatories on district accounts. Ahrens/Schlawin Motion Carried 7-0


The Board approved holding regular meetings on the 2nd Monday of each month at 6 pm.   Schlawin/McNeese  Motion Carried 7-0


The Board approved the Union Echo Leader as the official newspaper for the district.  Schlawin/Roys   Motion Carried 7-0


Supt Griffith has received proposals for the water testing at the Valley Campus.  He is recommending that we sign an agreement with Andy Larson  for the remainder of the fiscal year.  The Board approved the water testing agreement with Andy Larson.  Roys/Rue   Motion carried 7-0


The Board approved the Jamf quote in the amount of $19,186 to manage our Apple products throughout the district.   Mobile Device Management  Schlawin/Ahrens  Motion Carried 7-0


Discussion was held on mask wearing while participating in sports.  NFV athletes are wearing masks and others are not which is not on the same playing field.  We should be able to have some say for what happens on our campus.  Supt  Griffith responded that we are in a position to mandate what our students do but we can’t mandate other school students according to the IHSAA.  We will continue to reach out  to schools we compete against however NFV has no authority to mandate what other teams do.  The original message that was approved stated that athletes had to wear masks until they are on the playing field/court.


Motion to adjourn at 6:49 pm.   Ahrens/Rue Motion Carried 7-0


______________________________        _____________________________

Stacy Cummings, President                Sue Thoms, Business Manager