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Brantley earns ROSE for helping choking student
Bullying plan updated
ROSE award Brantley 2019
Dr. Sherri Brantley, left, accepts a ROSE Award from Great Bend USD 428 Superintendent Khris Thexton during the Monday, June 10, board of education meeting. Brantley helped a middle school student who was choking on a piece of gum. - photo by Susan Thacker

Recently, Dr. Sherri Brantley saw a Great Bend Middle School student choking on a piece of gum and her quick action saved the day. On Monday, Brantley received a ROSE Award — Recognizing Outstanding Support of Education — from the Great Bend USD 428 Board of Education.

Superintendent Khris Thexton said Brantley, the GBMS math coach, was nominated as a ROSE Award recipient by Principal David Reiser before the end of the school year in May.

“Recently, Sherri went above and beyond the call of duty to help a student in distress,” Thexton said. “The student was choking on a piece of gum and Sherri quickly evaluated the situation and performed the Heimlich Maneuver on him to dislodge the gum from his throat. Her quick thinking and actions demonstrated outstanding actions to help a student.”

Reiser said the incident happened after school as students were passing down the hallway to exit the building. The student was pointing at his throat and unable to speak. Brantley noticed that he was unable to breathe and was turning purple, so she immediately performed the Heimlich Maneuver and out popped the piece of bubble gum that was stuck in his throat.

Bullying Prevention

In other business, the board looked at changes to the district’s Bullying Prevention Guidelines. Assistant Superintendent John Popp said the laws haven’t changed much, but the revision keeps the guidelines current.

“We have added opportunities for parents and students to report bullying online,” he said. The reports to the district website go directly to Popp, who then makes the appropriate contacts.

Board member Don Williams noted that the guidelines don’t spell out the consequences of bullying.

Popp said the response will vary with each situation. Often it starts and ends with a conversation with the students involved and their parents.

“Many times we find it’s two kids who have a conflict with each other,” Popp said. While those incidents may require action, they aren’t actually bullying.

Board member Susan Young asked about the prevalence of cyberbullying. Popp said it is something the district sees and deals with from fourth grade on through high school. However, he said, “it gets complicated to know how far to extend our reach when things happen outside of school.”

The guidelines also explain the training that district employees and students receive.

Fees and  reimbursements

The board also approved textbook and meal fees, as well as mileage reimbursement to qualified parents or guardians who transport students to and from school and live at least 2.5 miles from the school.

Textbook fees for grades K-12 are unchanged from last year, starting at $40 for kindergarten and early childhood special education preschool, $55 for grades 1-6, $60 for grades 7-8 and $95 for high school.

Breakfast and lunch fees are also unchanged, with the exception of the price adults pay for lunch, which will increase 10 cents to $3.75. Lunch is $1.85 for elementary students, $2.15 at GBMS and $2.20 at GBHS. Reduced-price meals are 40 cents. Milk is 35 cents. Breakfast is $1 for students and $2.20 for adults. Reduced-price breakfasts are 30 cents.

Mileage reimbursement was set at 34 cents per mile. Thexton said 121 families participated, transporting 201 students a total of 237,012.35 miles.


The board approved the following new teacher appointments:

• Taylor Holstrom, kindergarten at Eisenhower

• MacKenzie Unruh, special education at Lincoln

• Patricia Cauthon, special education at Ellinwood schools

• Natasha Hardcastle, preschool at Helping Hands Preschool

• Cynthia Brack, special education at Ellinwood schools

• Shawn Howell, special education at Lincoln

• Anna Alvarez, Spanish teacher at GBHS

The board approved the following teacher resignations:

• Dustin Cook, math teacher at GBHS

• Abby Sandmann, English teacher at GBHS

• Lisa Thompson, Spanish teacher at GBHS

• Audra Seeman, English teacher at GBHS

• Courtney True, math teacher at GBHS

Meeting at a glance

Here’s a quick look at what the Great Bend USD Board of Education did Monday, June 10.

• Presented a ROSE Award to Dr. Sherri Brantley, GBMS math coach.

• Approved the updated Bullying Prevention Plan.

• Approved a resolution to submit a bond referendum.

• Approved 2019-2020 student insurance for school-sponsored and supervised activities, for a total cost of $44,374.50. The fee for the previous year was $41,792.50.

• Approved the 2019-2020 KASB Risk Management Workers Compensation premium of $121,707. The premium for 2018-2019 was $103,128.

• Conducted the first of two readings of board policy revisions. Board members have copies of policies and will approve them at a subsequent meeting.

• Approved textbook fees, meal fees and mileage reimbursements to parents living 2.5 miles or further from their children’s attendance centers.

• Assistant Superintendent John Popp reported on summer school attendance, student withdrawal and graduation numbers, and a summary of annual personnel changes.

• Superintendent Thexton gave a brief legislative update and reported on summer projects.

• Contributions and grant application submissions were approved.

• There was a 20-minute executive session to discuss the ratification of the negotiated agreement.

• A consent agenda was approved that included personnel changes, the negotiated agreement (teacher contracts), classified pay adjustment and administrative contracts with pay adjustments.

• A brief Board of Education meeting is scheduled for 7:30 a.m. on June 28 at the District Education Center, to close out the books at the end of the fiscal year.