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July 21, 2014


Employee handbook changes approved

Changes to employee handbooks for the 2014-15 school year were approved for professional teaching staff, administrative assistants, assistant cooks and associate kitchen staff, administrators, confidential support staff, custodians and paraprofessionals.

Most changes reflected language from the district’s new Strategic Plan, grammatical corrections, recommendations from legal counsel, policy references or clarifications that reflect actual practice.
A revision for teachers and paraprofessionals, however, came about from input given at the Compensation Committee and Heart of Hamilton meetings that provides staff with greater flexibility to use personal days.

All employees covered by the handbooks will receive an email with their specific handbook attached and details of the changes.


Schneider recognized for national teaching award

The Hamilton School Board recognized Templeton Middle School grade seven teacher Alan Schneider for being chosen Wisconsin Council for Social Studies Middle School teacher of the year. Board members congratulated him for earning the distinguished award and acknowledged the impact that his engaging teaching has on students.
The School Board approved revised curriculum documents for fitness education, health, human growth and development, secondary science, art, social studies and elementary English – language arts.

Bus transportation contract extended

The bus transportation contract with Dairyland – Hamilton was extended. In exchange for the extended contract, the district will receive a one-time credit of $42,000, installation of a new $60,000 camera system at no cost to district and a drop in payments. The revised contract will result in more than $31,536 of annual savings.

School school dates set for 2015

The Summer Opportunities Program will be in session from June 22 until July 17 in 2015 with no classes on July 3 to provide families with an extended July 4 holiday weekend.

Teacher induction program will operate without SWNTP partnership

New teachers hired in the Hamilton School District will continue to participate in an induction program, but the district will no longer be part of the Southeastern Wisconsin New Teacher Project. Instead, Educational Services will assume responsibility for professional learning opportunities previously provided by this agency. New teachers will attend a three-day workshop in August that will include introduction to the coaching model, an opportunity to develop an understanding of the strategic plan, technology training, mentor-mentee relationships and responsibilities, and policies and procedures.

New teachers will have afterschool workshops in: promoting a positive classroom environment, analyzing student work and providing effective feedback, disciplinary literacy and designing valid and reliable assessments. Teachers will continue to rely on district mentors for guidance regarding general operations and instructional practices.

Student handbooks approved

Elementary and middle school handbooks were approved. Changes included minor language changes, references to a new student database system and combining two signature pages into one.

Other personnel news

In other personnel business, the School Board:

  • accepted the resignations of Templeton grade seven teacher John Krenek and Marcy special services paraprofessional Katherine Gielow;

  • appointed Jennifer Berwanger as Woodside grade five teacher, Rebeccah Derks as Templeton grade 8 teacher Joseph Schaeffler as Templeton custodian, Lorene Lisheron as Hamilton art teacher, Andrew Lohr-Kougl as Hamilton science teacher, Rachel Ramirez as Hamilton paraprofessional and Tracy Hahn as Hamilton paraprofessional;
  • modified the contracts of special services program support staff member Kathleen Mesick from 70 to 60 percent, and Templeton speech and language pathologist Kristin Muehlenbach from 40 to 60 percent;
  • approved contracting for an additional part-time school nurse for the upcoming school year. The contract will be for 1,100 hours per year with a projected salary not to exceed $43,500. The current half-time contract with school nurse Lynn McClone is far below state- and nationally-recommended staffing levels. The need for nurse services has expanded as more students require medication at school, staff training expectations are growing and student health care plan coordination has more than tripled in the past decade; and
  • approved 2014-15 total aggregate salary increases of 1.46 percent for assistant cooks and associate kitchen staff, confidential support staff and administrators, 2 percent for paraprofessionals and 2.4 percent for administrative assistants. All salary adjustments are retroactive to July 1. Salaries for nongroup employees such as seasonal employees and substitutes remain unchanged.