NEW MADRID - The sale of bonds begins the funding process to improve school buildings in the New Madrid County R-1 School District.
At the December meeting, the school board approved the sale of $8,000,000 in general obligation bonds to its municipal bond underwriter L.J. Hart and Company of St. Louis as well as $993,000 Zero Interest Qualified Zone Academy Bonds.
According to Hart, the Bank of New Madrid purchased $500,000 and First State Bank and Trust Company of Sikeston acquired $350,000 of the interest bearing general obligation bonds. The sale of $200,000 of bonds was made to the Raymond James office in Sikeston to accommodate local investors interested in purchasing the bonds.
Bill Nance, superintendent of schools, said he was pleased efforts were made to attract local investors. "It is nice that our marketing procedures facilitated this local involvement while still receiving attractive interest rates," he said.
The bonds, which were approved by district patrons in the November election, will fund additional classrooms for Lilbourn Elementary School and extensive improvements to the Matthews, Lilbourn and New Madrid elementary schools. As part of this process, board members authorized the administration to begin preparing bid documents for roofing needs at Lilbourn and Matthews elementary schools.
According to the superintendent, the board hopes to receive the bids by February. Work on the roofs would be completed during the summer.
"We have so much work that has to be done on the inside the buildings but before we spend money on the inside we have to make sure that roofs are secure," Nance said.
Also during the December meeting, the administration was asked to work with the New Madrid City Council and Park Board to generate a cost proposal for renovating the high school baseball and softball fields.
A committee will be established with representatives from the three groups this month. The group is expected to begin meeting immediately and during the next few months prioritize needs and make recommendations.
The purchase of a student software program was approved. The program is used for attendance, grade book, discipline referrals, medical records, master schedules, etc.
Nance said the program will first be implemented in the high school and middle school. Once operational, each of the grade schools will be included.
The resignation of Patricia Taylor was accepted by the board. Kristina Hampton was hired as an assistant teacher at the Middle School and Amanda Barnes as a part-time custodian for the New Madrid Elementary School while Cindy Molloy was transferred from assistant teacher at the Middle School to EMH teacher there.
The Bank of New Madrid was approved as the district's bank depository for the next two calendar years beginning Jan. 1. Also the board approved budget adjustments for the 2006-07 school year; renewed the property, bus fleet and liability insurance contract with MUSIC; authorized the preparation of bid documents for new buses which will go into service for the next school year and selected Woody Smelser as the district's candidate for the MSBA's J.T. Belcher Scholarship.
Classes in the R-1 District will resume on Jan. 2 with full day of class for all students.