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El Paso County Colorado District 49

District 49 October meeting – mill levy

About 50 people listened to D 49 Superintendent Steven Hull as he opened the October School District 49 board meeting reading a legal opinion on the proposed mill levy.”The board of education is legally bound to carry out the mill levy as written,” Hull said. “There is no wiggle room for future board members to make any changes.” Hull was addressing a question from the opposition regarding future board members and their ability to change where and how the mill levy money could be spent.Hull also told the board he had met with the D 49 District Accountability Advisory Committee co-chairs, and discussed a reconfiguration of subcommittees that would include budget, growth, learning assessment and communications. The discussions are ongoing, he said. Hull also said the school district is going to work closely with the Falcon Professional Development League on an emergency disaster plan for the area.Dave Martin, president of the school board, suggested that the administration facilitate bringing board member candidates into the schools to learn how the schools operate before the November election. “I think it would be beneficial for them to tour the schools and talk to teachers, students and other staff,” Martin said.Henry Reitwiesner spoke about possible construction schedules if the mill levy passes. He said all of the building and remodeling would be completed by July 2007. He also said if construction and fuel costs rapidly rise because of Hurricane Katrina there is concern with staying on budget. Although the district will receive a $20,000 grant for building energy-efficient buildings, the money probably won’t fill in the gap, Reitwiesner said. Martin asked Reitwiesner to check with the builders and see if they can keep the costs down.During the open forum, Gina Burgoyne spoke regarding the recent suspension of the Falcon Middle School football coach. Speaking for many middle school parents, she said they felt the suspension was unfair and not deserved, especially since none of the Falcon parents who had been at the game in question were interviewed prior to the suspension. Before she could finish her statement, Martin interrupted her and said that she had stated specific names of people, which was inappropriate for the forum. He offered to speak with her privately during the break to hear her concerns. Several people applauded Burgoyne as she left the podium. A Falcon Middle School player also addressed the board on the same subject and spoke about his respect for the coach.The board approved the Banning Lewis Ranch charter school with conditions by a four-to-one vote. Judy Holman voted against it. Rocky Mountain Classical Academy submitted a second charter school application, and the district has 75 days to respond.Fifth graders from Evans Elementary School recited the preamble and gave a presentation on the Constitution to the board.The next board of education meeting is Nov. 3 at 6:30 p.m. at the central administration building.

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