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Trustees approve architect firm for facilities study

by Dolores Hamilton
The firm of VLK Architects of Arlington was selected by the Iowa Park CISD School Board Thursday night to engage in a district-wide facilities study.
VLK Architects was one of three firms the trustees chose to interview for the job. “VLK is probably the most experienced of the group because they specialize in building schools,” Superintendent Steve Moody said. “They have worked on 350 schools in the last five years.”
Trustee Shawn Price said he favored VLK because their main focus is on students. Board President Jeff Rhoades agreed saying, “I like them because of their experience and approach to education.” After hearing the discussions, Moody said, “At this point, with all the information we have and what we’re looking at - our needs and facility study, my recommendation is that we go with VLK.”
School trustees have shown concern for the past several years for the aging middle school campus. The upcoming study will likely focus on options including, but not limited, to replacing or remodeling the middle school.
A trustee election was called for May 5, with early voting done at city hall and the school administration office. On election day votes will be cast at Friendly Door Senior Citizens Center, and West Wichita Coop in Valley View.
The school calendar for 2018-2019 was approved. Along with eight other school districts in the area, Iowa Park CISD students will have a full week off at Thanksgiving. The first day of school will be Aug. 16, and last day May 22. Graduation will be on May 25. Homecoming is set for Sept. 28, and spring break will be March 18 - 22.
Reports were given by Sharon Godwin on the Investment Policy; Jodi Schlaud on technology upgrades at the different campuses; and Supt. Moody told of renovations in the girls locker room at the high school.
The final reading of Upgrade 109 was held and it was approved by the trustees.
Talking about UIL realignment, Athletic Director Aubrey Sims said there will be six teams in the district for football, adding Aubrey, and five teams for the rest of the sports. He said this year district football games will start at 7 p.m.
“Our non-district games will be tough,” Sims said. “For some reason nobody wanted to play us.” The Hawks pre-season schedule includes two teams (Brock and Sweetwater) that played for a state championship in the last two years.
After meeting in executive session, the board renewed the contracts of the following: James Kennedy, Kidwell Principal; Paige Liggett, Kidwell Counselor; Brandi Swenson, Bradford Principal; Brandy Rhoades, Bradford Counselor; Darla Biddy, MS Principal; Adam Arredondo, MS Assistant Principal; Nona Luminack, MS Counselor; Leah Russell, HS Principal; Clifton McFadden, HS Assistant Principal; and Tracy Catlin, HS Counselor.
Also, Cindy Skjelstad, Academic Coordinator; Aubrey Sims, Athletic Director; Jonathan Clubb, Tax Assessor/Collector and District Operations Director; Sharon Godwin, Chief Financial Officer; Janet Bowling, District Services Coordinator/PEIMS; and Jodi Schlaud, Curriculum & Instructional Technology Coordinator.
At the beginning of the meeting, the board recognized Derek Hostas and Chloe Patridge, Iowa Park Rotary Club’s Students of the Month for January.