R-1 District offers incentives for retirement notifications

Friday, October 27, 2017

NEW MADRID, Mo. - Dr. Sam Duncan describes the New Madrid County R-1 faculty and staff as "stellar" and he wants to ensure it remains that way.

During the October School Board meeting, the board approved a one-time incentive to be paid to teachers eligible to retire at the end of the current school year. The incentive is similar to one the board offered to those retiring last May.

"We don't want anyone to leave us. We have a stellar faculty. However if someone is going to leave us, then we will have a jump on future candidates," Duncan said about offering the incentives for early notification.

The incentives approved by the board will pay $1,250 to those who submit a resignation notification to the superintendent's office no later than 3 p.m. Dec. 1. There will be $1,000 paid to individuals who submit a resignation notification to the superintendent's office after the Dec. 1 deadline and no later than 3 p.m. Jan. 11, 2018, while $750 will be paid to those who submit a resignation notification to the superintendent's office after the Jan. 11, 2018, deadline and no later than 3 p.m. Feb. 8, 2018.

No incentive will be paid to individuals who submit a resignation letter after the Feb. 8, 2018, deadline.

Last year the district offered those faculty planning to retire a $750 incentive for submitting their letters of resignation by a February deadline.

According to Duncan, the effort enabled the district to begin its recruiting earlier.

"That caused us to be able to pick up the best recruiting season we have had as far as talent goes. That is the reason we do it," Duncan said. "We are very pleased with who we have but we want to know if someone is going to retire so we can go out and recruit the best and brightest."

He also pointed out the early decision enables faculty and staff to begin making their retirement plans in a timely manner.

In reporting on the district's attendance and enrollment, Duncan noted attendance is good and credited a number of steps taken by administrators to continue to tighten the district's policies over the summer. He said the district not only focuses on what it can do to make students want to be in school but also looks at the issues on what is keeping students from attending.

Compared to this time last year, enrollment is down by 95 students, according to Duncan. While enrollment is holding steady at Matthews and Lilbourn Elementary Schools and the Middle School, Duncan said there is a smaller kindergarten class at New Madrid Elementary and enrollment is down at the Central High School.

John Garner presented information on the use of staff members as bus monitors.

With several long bus routes and some buses carrying from 40 to 50 students, Duncan said the addition of bus monitors provides "another set of eyes and ears on the bus" to ensure students' safety.

In other actions by the Board:

* Repairs on the B Pod Roof at New Madrid County Central High School was approved. The work will be performed by Quality Roofing at a cost of $8,250.

* Regina Hinklin presented information on this year's Parents as Teachers program.

Currently the district has only one person working with PAT. Duncan said the district is looking for ways to expand the program using state funding

* The resignation of Kim Ash, who serves as the secretary for Central Middle School, was accepted.

* Board member Kay Rebstock reported on the Missouri School Board Association's Annual Conference.

* The District is launching a new online store as part of its website, nmceaglenation.com.

The student online store is expected to be online by the end of October or early November. Sponsored by Josten's, the district will receive 12 percent back on every purchase made through the online store.

* Administrators from the district's elementary schools, middle school, high school and technical school also made presentations at the meeting.