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Fredericktown R-I Feb. meeting

Despite the forecast of more winter weather the Fredericktown School Board meeting had a full house.

Current North County Assistant Superintendent Chad Starkey will be returning to the Fredericktown School District as assistant superintendent. 

The Fredericktown School Board held a special meeting Feb. 14 where they hired Starkey for the 2019-2020 school year.

Starkey has previous experience with the district. He was principal at the middle school from 1999 to 2008, assistant superintendent from 2008 to 2013 and superintendent from 2013 to 2014.

Starkey said he worked for the district for 15 years and is excited to get the opportunity to work with the administration, staff, school board and the community.

"I look forward to being part of a team that puts students first," Starkey said. "They are hardworking educators who care about student success."

Starkey said he thinks all experiences help one learn and grow as a professional and he has enjoyed his past five years with the North County School District.

"I have made many new friends and appreciated the opportunity there as well," Starkey said.

Superintendent Brett Reutzel said he is pleased with the opportunity to bring Starkey back in to the district.

"When we opened the position, we did not anticipate the potential of hiring someone with the experience for the position or familiarity of the school community," Reutzel said. "We felt like it was a walk-off home run."

During the school board's regularly scheduled meeting Feb. 19, the board heard from preschool, library and MRSS programs.

Tami Wright said preschool has a full enrollment for next school year with a tuition rate of $70 per week. She said an accreditation review is coming up with a 15-day window for an unannounced visit to access the program's operation.

Kindergarten screening is scheduled for April 8-10. Wright said in the past many students scored in the top 10 percent of the entire incoming kindergarten class. 

Intermediate School Librarian Sally Hovis gave an overview for the school library programs.

Hovis said at the elementary and intermediate schools, students visit the library media center once each week for 50-minute periods.

"Each visit consists of book browsing and checkout as well as lesson time," Hovis said. "Lesson time involves a variety of lessons including library skills to make students independent users of the library, read alouds, reference book and research skills."

Hovis said students participate in annual events such as Show Me Reader Award, Read Across America Week and Read In Day. 

At the middle and high school levels, Hovis said the media centers provide a wide range of opportunities and assistance to students and teachers.

"Along with being open for checking out materials, students use the library media centers for club and organization meetings," Hovis said. "Students enjoy the variety of STEM project activities that are available at the middle school and the third annual STEAM night hosted at the high school was very well attended."

Hovis said the library media centers are utilized throughout the school day as well as after school by groups of students and individual students for a variety of purposes.

Joe Garrity and Kelli Nicholson reported on the district's Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) program. 

Garrity said this program provides assistance to students who are struggling and targets Algebra 1 for intervention and will begin a similar intervention for English 1 next year. 

Reutzel then presented the board with a proposed 2019-2020 school calendar. The proposed calendar has a beginning school date of Aug. 15. The board approved the calendar.

Reutzel then made an adjustment to the current school calendar due to the district missing eight school days due to inclement weather. The last day of school for classes will now be May 28.

The next meeting of the Fredericktown School board will be at 5 p.m. March 19 at the district offices.

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Victoria Kemper is a reporter for the Daily Journal. She can be reached at 573-783-3366 or at vkemper@democratnewsonline.com

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