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January 19, 2015

Board gives authority to develop classroom addition bids

Contracts with a construction manager, architect and associated engineers to create bid documents for a classroom addition at Hamilton High School will be developed. The School Board gave authority to administrators at its Jan. 19 regular meeting to get the process started.


School Board members are expected to take action on the contracts within the next two months. Cost of the facility, which will be funded through the district’s maintenance budget and fund balance, are not to exceed $4.4 million.


Members of the community Facilities Advisory Committee (FAC) expressed support Dec. 8 for the proposed classroom addition. The committee recommended that the district maximize the project by adding at least 10 classrooms instead of eight which had been proposed initially. After reviewing enrollment trends and space use at the high school, committee members recommended more classrooms to cover current and projected enrollment concerns.


The project will include 10 classrooms, two small group and teacher planning rooms, a multi-purpose room and restrooms. The School Board will take final action in March on whether to approve the project.


Hamilton, Templeton course catalogs approved

The School Board approved the middle school and high school course catalogs. The most significant changes occurred at Templeton where a new schedule and revised reading program will be in place next year. In academic core subjects, reading has shifted to critical literacy. In addition, establishment of an advisement period where students will receive academic enrichment and support will allow more students to take allied arts or elective classes. In the past, students received reading and math support in lieu of allied arts or elective class.


Added high school courses include 3D solid modeling, grade 9 communication arts class for students who need extra skills, Advanced Placement environmental science, and world history and modern affairs. The ASPIRE test replaces EXPLORE and PLAN references. Deleted are digital electronics and 20th century U.S. history.


Summer Opportunities to offer shuttle service again

Lannon Principal and Summer Opportunities Coordinator Dick Ladd reported on plans for the upcoming summer school session. A service offered to parents last year proved to be such a positive addition, it will be offered again for the 2015 program.


The district offered free shuttle bus service from Woodside, Lannon and Marcy elementary schools and Sussex Village Park where parents dropped off their children who then took a shuttle bus to their summer school program. The shuttle reduced traffic at the high school which was in the midst of the Hamilton Athletic Center construction project. Instead of using Sussex Village Park, the site for Lions Daze activities, the district will explore using Armory Park.

Enrichment courses are set for June 22 – July 17. Students will have off July 3 for the Independence Day holiday weekend.


Templeton Middle School promotional classes will begin June 22 and could go until July 31, but the program may be modified to a more personalized approach that allows students to exit when they make up the credits they need. In some cases, students may not stay for four weeks if they reach their academic goals.

Many aspects of the program will remain the same as last year. Parents will receive email messages about the program and they will be able to register for their children’s classes online. In addition, fees are expected to remain the same, ranging from $4 to $20 per class. The fees cover the cost of consumable materials used in class. A $50 non-resident tuition fee in addition to regular class fees will be assessed as well.


District unpaid school fees remain low

After modifying collection procedures more than five years ago, the Hamilton School District’s unpaid school fees continue to be low. The total amount owed by the class of 2014 was $99.55 – the lowest amount in the past five years and significantly less than some years when total uncollected student fees were more than $1,500. Only two students from the class of 2014 had unpaid fees.


Students are reminded about their unpaid debt twice each year and asked to payit off. In addition, a policy went into effect in 2009-10 that requires clearance of all unpaid fees and fines before a parking permit is issued.


Girls swim co-op agreement signed

Hamilton girls will continue to participate in competitive swimming, thanks to an agreement passed by the Hamilton and Menomonee Falls school boards. The agreement renews a Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association cooperative allowing Hamilton girls to be a part of the Menomonee Falls Swim Team for the next two years. A dozen Hamilton and 19 Menomonee Falls girls are on the cooperative team this year. The cooperative was formed because Hamilton does not have a swimming pool. Costs associated with the program are split 50-50 between the two schools.


Personnel action taken

In personnel matters, the School Board:

  • accepted the retirement request of Willow Springs kindergarten teacher Rita Forrester;
  • appointed Peter Matenaer as Marcy special services paraprofessional, Christopher Herman as part-time Templeton custodian, Greg Winston as Woodside instructional and supervision paraprofessional and Kim Martin as a part-time Hamilton replacement art teacher;
  • approved a 1.46 percent increase to the regular non-base supplemental compensation of district teachers for the 2014-15 school year, retroactive to the start of the school year; and
  • approved a one-time performance-merit stipend of $500 prorated based on employees’ FTE for teachers, paraprofessionals, administrative assistants, confidential support staff and administrators.