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The Bismarck School District underwent a number of significant changes in 2017. The most significant of those changes was the retirement of long-time superintendent Chuck Hasty and the promotion of middle/high school principal Jason King to replace him. There were several other changes in administration, but the district appeared to run smoothly nonetheless.

January

Superintendent Chuck Hasty told the board that, although the school is generally in good shape, its roof will need to be replaced soon.

The board approved annual reports on the school district's A+ Program and its resource standards.

February

Hasty cautioned the board of education that if it sets higher grade standards for district students participating in athletics and other extracurricular activities, it will put the school at a distinct disadvantage to other schools in the area.

The board of education approved the District Evaluation Plan.

March

Hasty told members of the board of education that the expansion of charter schools throughout the state could cause serious financial issues for public schools. The board was warned to be careful about spending under the current unsettled circumstances. He noted that transportation funding is "next to nothing already."

High School Principal Jason King updated the board about next year's Professional Learning Communities (PLC) in the district.

April

The top three candidates running for seats on the Bismarck Board of Education in the April 4 municipal election — Bill Skaggs Jr., Jolee Dickey and incumbent Matt Dunn — were read their oaths of office at the start of the board's meeting.

May

Twenty-eight Bismarck High School seniors took part in graduation ceremonies held Friday evening in the school’s gymnasium.

Board members approved two candidates — Harold Gallaher and Louie Lucas — to be added to the Bismarck Hall of Fame in September.

Teacher Nathan Pruett showed board members a four-minute video of his students performing outdoor fly testing of small glider planes they had created in a 3D printer at the school.

June

Bismarck High School students who participate in MSHSAA-sponsored interscholastic activities and athletics, as well as any student who drives to school and parks on campus, will be subject to random drug testing throughout the school year to assure they are drug and alcohol free.

Mayor Seth Radford spoke to the board of education about the city's plan to put in infrastructure on property between the Lady Queene Restaurant and the school in hopes of drawing businesses and housing subdivisions to town. He is seeking two utility easements from the school for the project.

Bismarck was among seven school districts in and around the Parkland awarded the distinction of “Total Fleet Excellence” by the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

August

Superintendent King announced that the Bismarck School District will not hold classes on Aug. 21 due to the total solar eclipse. Classes will resume as usual Aug. 22. King told the board of education that he couldn't have asked for a better first week of school.

Former elementary school principal Carmen Barton saw her duties expanded when she was named K-12 principal for the district.

September

The Bismarck Hall of Fame received two new members in an induction ceremony held Friday night at Bismarck High School as alumni Louie Lucas and Harold Gallaher joined 20 other previously-announced hall of famers.

The Bismarck Board of Education approved its 2017-18 budget and took preliminary steps to place a bond issue on the April ballot.

October

During a brief meeting, the board of education discussed the school district’s enrollment and the upgrading of security cameras on campus.

November

The Bismarck School Board received a presentation on its planned no tax increase bond issue when it met in regular session for the month of November.

King went over the annual evaluation of goals set in place by the school district in November 2013. He noted that Bismarck School has done well in meeting many of the goals and that the administration will continue to work toward improving the percentages of students taking the ACT and attending a college or university.

According to the 2017 MSIP (Missouri School Improvement Plan) and APR (Annual Performance Report) numbers released by the Missouri Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (DESE), King said the school had performed in an “outstanding” manner.

December

In his presentation on the annual audit results to the board of education, King reported that there were no irregularities found by its CPA firm that needed to be addressed by the district.

King reported that school district enrollment numbers appeared to have stabilized.

In her annual library media center programs report, Shannon Nelson said that research on materials and data not touched over the past year has now been undertaken.

Kevin Jenkins is a reporter for the Daily Journal and can be reached at 573-518-3614 or kjenkins@dailyjournalonline.com

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