Naselle GRV School Board meeting was challenging
March 2, 2023
There are good reasons to serve on a school board, but there are also issues that challenge both the local Naselle GRV board members and the community. At the last meeting on February 21, a full agenda and an estimated 20 guests had some long discussions. An on-going issue from the January meeting was the hiring of a new interventionist by the board with funds from Pacific County. Several people from the school as well as the Pacific County Health Department, defended the purpose of the position and clarified her responsibilities. One teacher spoke telling her experience as a classroom teacher with little time for troubled students who need more attention than she can give because she has lessons to teach. Some parents wanted clarification on what problems the interventionist can respond to, whether it be drugs or alcohol related. Another spoke of the changes in students in the past few years such as behavior, drugs and violence as evidence the new position is warranted.
Several policies were discussed that were important to parents such as: Policy # 4210: Regulations of Dangerous Weapons on School Premises for the third reading. A parent presented different wording for the policy, so the proposed draft was tabled for the next meeting. Other policies that were presented for the first reading were: #2411: High School Equivalency Certificate, which passed on the first reading; #3230: Searches of Students and Student Privacy which caused discussion; #3231: Student Records which was passed on the first reading after a few questions were answered; then #3421: regarding Child Abuse and Neglect spurred discussions as it brought serious concerns and questions from the audience. Later in the meeting, purchasing new Chromebooks for one-quarter of the students was authorized using federal funding. New Chromebooks are purchased annually on a rotation basis.
Board members voted and approved compensation of $50 a month for themselves quoting RCW 28A.343.400 allowing board members to be paid as compensation for attending board meetings and other district-related tasks if a resolution was approved by the board. It was approved.
Toward the end of the meeting, the board went an into executive session to evaluate the performance of Lisa Nelson, Superintendent. As a result, her contract was extended one-year beyond her current contract.
Board member Tyson Vogeler gave a report on the Legislature’s work for education. The Administrative and Indian committee is currently considering the Naselle Youth Camp land that is available since the camp’s closure last year. One popular option is for the state to gift the camp property to the Chinook Indian Tribe, which is recognized by the state. It has been put into a bill and will hopefully be voted on. Mr. Vogeler urged all who support this option to contact their legislators to express support for the bill. The land would be gifted to the Chinook Tribe for a 10 year period and be used in whatever way they choose.
Also, for those who accessed the meeting by phone, or had trouble accessing the meeting electronically, the issue will hopefully be on next month’s agenda. The happy news of a windfall of $600,000 to the district from the state of Washington’s closure of the camp was also suggested as an agenda item for next month’s meeting on March 21 at the school library.