Business Manager, Nona Grieshert, gave a budget update and said the State would be allowing the District a Cost Of Living Adjustment (COLA). She stated they were not getting a COLA for this fiscal year, but next year 3.6% increase and year after 1%. Grieshert hadn’t heard about increasing or continuing COVID funds and no word on Forest Reserve funds either. Moore asked if there was potential for Federal COVID money. Grieshert stated they were still in discussion at this point, adding it would be restricted money.
Superintendent James Berardi stated there were no planned cuts but felt they would be issuing pink slips. He ideally hoped it would be what happened last year where there were no cuts and the pink slips were rescinded. Berardi added they were not trying to get rid of anyone but won’t know until they have a final budget. A budget meeting will be held next month. Date will be determined.
Transportation was discussed and committee meetings were held on both sides of the county. Berardi stated transportation had been impacted by school closures. He reported that the permanent charging stations for the electric buses are complete and functioning properly, adding the buses are working very well. Berardi stated he was working with the drivers on when the buses need charging in trying to maximize the time of use meter.
During staff reports, Loyalton High School Principal Tom Jones reported finals were underway with teachers and students working hard to end the semester on a good note. He said they are trying to plan some school events this spring and have been working with the Health Department.
Loyalton Elementary School Principal Andrea Ceresola reported they had been having some exciting times at LES having to go to a hybrid model. She stated she was always in awe of her teachers continuing to change course, parents’ patience and students’ resiliency. She stated the school went back to in person classes that day, as they had been able to show no transmission on campus and said the next step was waiting on a CDPH safety review. Also starting this week, Coffee with the Principal through Zoom, which Ceresola explained was an opportunity for parents to interact with her. She was happy to pass out new water bottles donated from Sierra Schools Foundation and excited to have everyone back, with hopes of finishing the year in school.
Superintendent James Berardi reported on Downieville School and thanked Sierra Schools Foundation for art supplies and water hydration systems. He stated, they held an assembly for the high school students to try and have some normalcy. Since the high school doesn’t have a lot of students, they were able to spread out safely in the gym and played some games and did some things that he felt were exciting for the kids. Berardi said students also presented some projects they were working on.
Ag Advisor Cali Griffin reported on Loyalton Future Farmers of America stating they were “rolling pretty good” and a lot is virtual. She congratulated students Conner Kilmurray and Chance Morgan for working toward their State Degree. Griffin said students were making Flower Grams for Valentine’s Day fun.