Boyne City Public Schools looking at multi-use building and more

boyne school board work sessionBeth Gohs

Staff Writer

 

The Boyne City Public Schools Board of Education discussed its student goals, including a potential multi-use community building at a board work session last week.
The special session, which occurred on Monday Oct. 13 prior to the board’s regular meeting, also entailed discussions about the school’s emergency fund, class size, programming and more.
“When we work on our student goals process, we have five main goals that we work at,” said Boyne City Public Schools Superintendent Peter Moss. “We want them to be literate, which means we want them to be able to read and write and comprehend. We want them to be able to problem solve… We want kids to be able to be good citizens, and so they have an understanding how government works and how the political process works, the origins of our country and what our law is based upon.”
The board discussed the benefits of having a multi-use building on school property in hopes that it could bring more students to attend Boyne City schools.
One member asked whether it would make a difference if the potential student was on the campus via the athletic building, if the child would be familiarized with the school enough to choose Boyne Public.
The board discussed the uses of the building for the students, which included a stage for the drama club to utilize, opening it up on Friday nights as a family night.
Moss discussed the advantages of creating an environment that caters to a diverse student population.
“At one time we were getting a pretty good number of children from Boyne Falls,” he said. “Boyne falls has been aggressive this year and developed their own pre-school program, and so a lot of the Boyne Falls kids are staying there… Once kids start going to a certain school, moms and dads get very comfortable, you get that circle of friends and they like that idea that their kids will stay there. That is an advantage of having retention.”
The board members listed what they would require in order to progress with the hypothetical situation of up-keeping this building and supporting it on their property.
One board member said she requested proper studies and surveys and a funding plan. She also told the board she understands the multiple uses for the community and students but doesn’t know enough about the project.
“You have to be flexible with the building space that you have, and you have to look towards the future, too,” said Boyne City Elementary School Principal Mark Fralick, adding that enrollment could decline but that there are no empty classrooms at this time.
The board agreed to create a building committee that will consist of three people or fewer, and will post meetings weekly to discuss the matter further.
The level of funds necessary for the school’s rainy day fund was also discussed.
One board member asked if they should aim for a 15 percent equity fund, but the board came to an agreement that a 10 percent equity fund would be sufficient.
“We want to add to the goals: preserve student programing (and) maintain reasonable class size,” said Moss.