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Can you believe it? First day of school arrives Tuesday PDF Print E-mail

Number of upgrades to facilities made over summer months

By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican

It seems like we just celebrated the Fourth of July.
Now, it’s Chase County Fair week, and on Tuesday, Aug. 18, it’s the first day of classes at Chase County Schools.
The first bell Tuesday will ring at 8:10 a.m., calling students into the building.
Tuesday’s first day of school will be a full school day, according to Supt. Matt Fisher.
Classes are starting a day earlier in the week than last year’s Wednesday start after the fair.
Fisher said by starting school a day earlier and with the way the calendar falls this year, CCS students will be able to complete the first semester of classes before Christmas break.
In past years, the first semester wasn’t completed until early January, after students returned from the holiday break.
While it seems the summer passed quickly again, a lot of upgrades have been completed to facilities this summer.
And, when students return to school on Tuesday, several new full-time staff members will greet them.
Six new full-time teachers have been hired the past several months, in addition to moving two others from part-time to full-time positions.
The new full-time staff includes:
Amy Walworth, K-6 music
Lisa Krutsinger, kindergarten
Renee Hamilton, 4th grade
Jeremy Vlasin, grade 7-12 ag, 7-8 science, FFA
Agnes Strand, grade 5-8 special education
Kim Bubak, 2nd grade
Renae Bottom and Jill Bauerle, both who were part-time last year, will be full-time instructors this year.
Bottom will teach grade 9-12 English and journalism, while Bauerle will have 7-12 English and the high school speech and drama programs.
The school board also had a long list of teacher’s aides, assistant coaches and bus drivers to approve on their meeting agenda for Tuesday night this week.
Supt. Fisher said if the board approves that slate of staff hirings, the only staff positions yet to fill are coaches for the junior high girls’ track teams.
New phone system, Macs
A new phone system was installed last week that will add a number of new features for the staff and public.    
One of the big pluses will be its ability to translate a voice message to a staff member into an email.
Supt. Fisher said when a staff member is not available for a phone call, a voice mail message can be left. The system will also immediately translate that into an email message which will be sent to the person’s email account.
That will help alleviate voice messages not being picked up.
The new system will also be able to transfer calls to the bus barn and Wellington School sites from the main school building. Before, if a person called the school and then needed to call those other sites, they had to hang up and redial.
Speaker phone capabilities are also included in the new system, which the school didn’t have before.
Another upgrade will be completed at the new football field on East 9th and the practice field there with installation of crumb rubber.
Board members approved matching a $14,000 grant earlier this summer to apply the crumb rubber, designed to help soften the surface.
Half of the crumb rubber is already on with the other half to go down before early September. CCS hosts its first football game on the new field Sept. 4.    
The Imperial airport zoning board was scheduled to meet Monday night this week to consider approval of the final football field light on the field’s northeast corner. All three other lights on the field have been approved
Both the federal and state aviation groups have given their okay to the northeast pole’s 41-foot height.
Elementary students will also be greeted by new carpet in their hallways and in the K-6 music room.
New servers have been installed to help alleviate some of the problems with the school’s computer network, and high school teachers and students will be on Mac laptops this school year, which replaced the Dell PC’s used the last three years in the school’s one-to-one laptop program.