“Board Games?” Not Hardly; It’s Serious Business

Mercury Staff, Staff

 

The Maple Run Unified School Board (MRUSD) will be holding a meeting at 6:00 PM on Wednesday, December 18, 2019.

 

The meeting will be hosted by Saint Albans City School.  All of the MRUSD schools rotate as a location for the twice monthly meetings. 

 

As some Mercury readers might not be aware of the MRUSD Board, and what it does, the Mercury interviewed Mr. William Kimball, who is serving a dual role as Assistant Superintendent, as well as Interim Principal for BFA. 

 

“The purpose of the board is; in Vermont, school boards have three main purposes. They have monitoring of the school system. Their role is to ensure that education is being provided to the students. They have a second piece, which is fiduciary responsibility, making sure the finances and the money is used properly, and effectively.  And the third piece is to set policies which the school districts operate under, and those come from the Vermont School Boards Association,” Kimball said. 

To further examine the Board and how it operates, there are 10 representatives, with 9 votes.  Each of the two Fairfield representatives gets ½ vote. Also involved are all of the administrations; eight principals and assistant principals.  And sometimes, there are representatives of the Maple Run Educational Association who attend as part of the normal course of business.

For this particular meeting the tentative agenda is set. “So there will be the first look at the total overall budget that’s being proposed for fiscal year ‘21.  They will be looking at that, and setting direction at where they’d like to see the budget come in at. There will be some construction updates, and approval of pre-construction services for Fairfield Center School.   And there will probably be updates about negotiations since we are in negotiations with the Teacher’s Association,” Kimball said. 

Anyone wishing to learn about dates, minutes and agendas of past and upcoming meetings can visit http://www.maplerun.org/o/mrusd/page/board-of-directors–51 to learn more.   Also, the meetings are filmed by Northwest Access TV, and the videos can be located within the MRUSD Board section of the website. 

Given his dual role, does Kimball have to “switch hats” in these meetings?

“Yes, I do.  I have been asked to report regularly on the work on proficiency-based learning, and transcripts specifically, and the work we are doing on that. I’m also in charge of all of the construction, so I am giving construction updates. And, I am the first administrative support in negotiations. Lately, I have been taking on a lot of the speaking role at Board meetings,” Kimball said. 

The average BFA student may ask, why would I care about what the Board does?

“If it is something that is going to affect their life here on campus … the BFA students got involved around the transcripts.  There will probably be an adoption soon of an update of our security camera policy,” Kimball said.  

Considering that the MRUSD and the schools within it are public organizations, funded by tax dollars, public input into the purposes of the Board described above is built in. 

“The meetings are open to the public,” Kimball said.