Fillmore Central Board responds to high school peanut allergy concerns


At the Fillmore Central School Board meeting on May 24, Superintendent Heath Olstad reviewed an email from a student’s parents regarding her severe peanut allergy and discussing ways to keep their daughter safe at school. school, as it will be moving into the high school building in the fall. They had also gone to the April council meeting to discuss the matter. Board member Shelly Topness expressed concern about the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches that will be offered to students in the Strength and Agility program. Olstad noted that the sandwiches will only be offered to students in grades 10 through 12 and that they will receive them when they leave after their practice. Board member Jim Love said it was an effective way to provide protein after a workout and pointed out that some kids probably brought their own peanut butter sandwiches anyway. Topness said she understands exposure from people bringing their own food is unavoidable, but it’s different when it’s the school distributing the food itself. Aaron Bishop agreed. “Our top priority should be the health and safety of all students and staff. We have to do our best to limit exposure,” he said. It was decided that Olstad would investigate the possibility of having the sandwiches prepared at another location and collecting them there or outside the school building if peanut butter is used.

Superintendent Olstad asked what the council wanted to do about the two a la carte items containing peanuts, which are offered to high school students in the cafeteria. Jennifer Pickett said she doesn’t see a problem with them because students will one day graduate and need to learn how to protect themselves in environments where peanuts are available. Bishop was in favor of removing those two items for a year and seeing how that goes. “I think there are alternatives,” he said. Ristau offered not to sell or provide peanut-based items for breakfast or lunch under the canteen program and to provide peanut-free zones in the school. The motion was approved.

Superintendent Olstad reported that the spring concerts for both buildings have been completed and all went well. Fillmore County Soil and Water again provided trees for the fifth grade class to plant. Nearly 150 student-athletes signed up for the Strength and Agility program this summer. The Senior Awards Banquet was held recently and nearly $49,000 in scholarships were awarded.

Alex Lange has been hired as a high school social studies teacher for the 2022-2023 school year. A resignation from ISC/daycare worker Makayla Braaten has been received. Resignations were also received from longtime employees Joni Mehus and Maggie Walsh. The board thanked them for their years of service to the district. Special education services contracts with Hiawatha Valley Education District or HVED have been approved for audiologist and traumatic brain injury and physical impairment. Up to 20 hours of summer school curriculum writing has been approved for certified personnel. Summer recreation coaches were hired and included Regan Hanson, Josh Haugerud, Atlee Hershberger, Myleigh Scheevel, Maddie Topness, Marissa Topness and Greg Kennedy.

The 2021-22 budget has been revised to include federal dollars and donations as well as elementary school roof replacement, summer school programs, and other expenses and revenues. The board approved the revised budget.

The district’s property and liability insurance with the Minnesota Insurance Scholastic Trust or MIST has been renewed for the upcoming school year at a rate of $76,045.96. The pay scale for guards has been revised to comply with pay equity regulations. Gallagher Core 360 ​​worker’s compensation quote approved at lower rate than last year. Sports sharing agreements with the Lanesboro and Mabel-Canton school districts have been approved along with the school’s MSHSL membership for 2022-23. A memorandum of understanding with Luther College that allows student teachers to fulfill their classroom teaching obligations at Fillmore Central has been approved.

School policy is to close the activity accounts of students who have had no activity during the school year, but Superintendent Olstad asked the board to waive closing the team account. of dance. Although there was no team last year, the school hopes to have one next school year. The board approved the waiver.

The board reviewed several bids for the LED lighting project and approved the lowest bid from Retrofit Lighting and Design. The project will upgrade both venues to 100% LED lighting and retrofit three SPED rooms with color-adjustable lighting systems.

The purchase of two square scrubbers and two edge scrubbers from DALCO has been approved. They will replace the orbital scrubbers that are currently used for floor maintenance in buildings. The aim is to create a safer working environment as orbital scrubbers use chemicals which can make floors slippery while newer ones are dry scrubbers. Representatives of the washing company and of DALCO have already trained all on-call staff in the use of the new equipment.

The next meeting of the Fillmore Central School Board will be June 28 at 6:30 p.m. in the Elementary Boardroom.

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