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CPS board to review final map options, next year's budget, public comment changes

A photo from Unsplash showing an empty classroom from behind. Two columns of desks point toward the front of the room, with a wide aisle between them. At the front is a larger desk for the teacher and a blackboard. On the right wall is a map.
Ivan Aleksic
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The Columbia School Board will get a formal look Monday at the four attendance area maps in the running for final selection and hear about their benefits and drawbacks.

The attendance area map options were presented to the board’s Long-Range Facilities Planning Committee on Wednesday and posted to Columbia Public Schools’ website, cpsk12.org, for public review.

A vote for a final map, which affects Phases Two and Three of the redistricting process and thus the most students, will be on the board’s July 8 agenda.

The maps vary in several ways. One way is in how they impact high school attendance areas.

Two of the maps — A-1 and A-2 — would keep high school attendance areas the same as they are now. The other two — B-1 and B-2 — would change high school attendance areas, according to previous Missourian reporting.

The changes would take effect in 2025 and 2026.

The district will host two open houses on the final maps from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Aslin Administration Building, 1818 W. Worley St.

A new survey seeking public feedback will be open until 5:30 p.m. June 14.

Proposed budget

The board will vote on a proposed budget for the 2024-2025 school year. District Chief Financial Officer Heather McArthur walked board members through the budget at a hearing Wednesday.

The budget estimates the district to bring in about $292.8 million in revenue and spend about $292.6 million on its expenses, McArthur said at the hearing. Both of these numbers are up from last school year.

The budget also accounts for 64 full-time equivalent positions the district plans to add next school year. These positions include elementary and middle teachers, instructional mentors and counselors, McArthur said.

Public participation policy

The board will vote on a revised version of the district’s policy on public participation at meetings.

The Policy Committee reviewed the policy, BDDH-1, in October last year. Members decided to continue revising the policy to improve its clarity, board member Paul Harper said at the time.

At a March meeting, the full board read and discussed the revised policy for the first time, but in April, Harper recommended that it be returned to the Policy Committee for further clarification.

Main changes include tweaking who can participate in public comment — from “residents” to “community members” — and increasing how long community members may speak on items they’ve requested be added to the agenda — from three minutes to five minutes.

Assessment calendar

The board will review and vote on an assessment plan and calendar for the 2024-25 school year. District staff introduced the plan at the board’s May 23 work session.

Proposed changes include adding a spring testing slot for high schoolers taking i-Ready assessments and giving a climate survey previously taken by fifth grade students to fourth graders instead.

Some other major assessments include the Missouri Assessment Program test for third through eighth grade students in the spring; Coalition Checklists, which “assess the social and emotional readiness of the student” for all students in the fall and winter; and physical fitness tests for fifth, seventh and ninth grade students in the fall and spring, according to the plan.

Special recognition

The board will recognize several community members early in the meeting. They are:

  • Rock Bridge High School nurse Danielle Lamm, for becoming a Nationally Certified School Nurse.
  • The Hickman High School Ethics Bowl Team, for winning the National High School Ethics Bowl championship.
  • Hickman students Catherine Fajen, Saathvik Kannan, Augustus Lookingbill and Charlotte Struckhoff, for being named National Merit Finalists.
  • District track and field state champions from Hickman and Rock Bridge high schools.
  • Jennifer Weston and Cynthia Kilfoyle as substitutes of the month

How to watch

The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. Monday in the Aslin Administration Building, 1818 W. Worley St. It will be livestreamed on CPS-TV, CenturyLink, Mediacom, Charter Spectrum, Roku, Apple TV and Fire TV.

The Columbia Missourian is a community news organization managed by professional editors and staffed by Missouri School of Journalism students who do the reporting, design, copy editing, information graphics, photography and multimedia.
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