December Board Meeting Highlighted By Two Presentations, Two Positions Filled 

WAYNE – With a pair of presentations taking up most of the regularly scheduled Wayne Community Schools Board of Education meeting, the group will also be continuing to work on their strategic plan once they receive their complete survey results.

From the Wayne Jr/Sr High Library, City Administrator, Wes Blecke joined Mayor Cale Giese Monday evening and provided information to the board of education as the City of Wayne is looking to add a half cent to their sales tax and are in search for a political subdivision partner.

Potential plans for a possible expansion to the Community Activity Center would be adding a gym near the southwest corner of the Jr/Sr High School parking lot.

Superintendent, Dr. Mark Lenihan said the school board is still considering of whether they want to be a partner with the City of Wayne.

“I always feel it’s good for public entities (such as) the city, the school, the county to work together on projects,” said Dr. Lenihan. “We’ve always had a great relationship with the City. We do a lot and we have interlocal (agreements) with the City.”

No decisions were made during the board meeting, but information was shared with the board members. The City of Wayne will need to know by January 15 if the School Board is wanting to move forward with an ‘intent to apply’ before a full application for a grant is needed by February 15.

School counselors then gave a presentation to the board being Kim Lubberstedt in her fourth year at the elementary and Lindsey Knutson in her third year in the Jr/Sr High School.

One issue is the increase in mental health.

“I still think when you close school for as long as we did back in 2020, there’s long-term implications that can come from that,” Dr. Lenihan added. “I feel as far as academics I feel we’re on board and we’re caught up, but there’s a lot going on with kids now a days.”

Both stated they have good administrative support but are looking for direction and potentially hiring a third counselor or mental health provider.

An outside counseling service, Heartland Counseling Services, will also help Tier II and III students which offer more needs.

Maggie Gubbels was hired as the 7-12 Special Education Resource Teacher. Gubbels does have a master’s degree and will begin in January as Gubbels recently completed her student teaching this past fall in Wayne. Jason Trautman has also been hired as the High School English Teacher during the 2022-23 school year and is a past graduate from Wayne.

Wayne Community Schools is also looking to hire cooks, paras and janitors. Reach out to the school if you’re interested.

December is also the month the Board of Education works with the Superintendent Contract. After going through a process, the board approved the new contract with no changes for a three-year term with a 1.5% increase in salary. The current contract will last until June of 2022 and the new three-year term will go through June of 2025.

Another new business item included approval of a first and final reading for the hiring of an assistant director of food service. This hiring will assist with Food Service Manager, Judy Pohlman and be a health insurance eligible position offering 40-hours a week and will last from August through May.

A technology laptop quote from Sterling was also approved for about 75 workstations which will be fully reimbursable from ESSER III funds.

The December Honor coffee also recognized All-State choir and One-Act play production.

The next regularly scheduled Wayne Community Schools Board of Education meeting will be on Monday, January 10 at 5 p.m.