The Barton Community College Board of Trustees renewed numerous contracts Thursday, and approved hiring two new employees.
The board met in executive session for one hour to discuss personnel before taking action.
Barton President Dr. Carl Heilman’s contract was extended for another year, maintaining a three-year contract.
The director of Learning Resources position remains unfilled.
Several faculty members were granted tenure along with their contract renewals. There were no faculty positions eliminated, but the board approved resignations from Yvonda Acker, Cheryl Couch, Kenneth Hopkinson, Judith Miller, Wade Parker and Darcy Wedel. Faculty contracts for Carol Crockett and Angela Sullivan were not renewed because those instructors have accepted other positions at the college.
The new employees approved by the board are Rhonda (Roni) Wertz, an instructor and coordinator for the Early Childhood program, and Alan Clark, the new assistant coach for women’s basketball.
The college has 12 head coaches; those with new contracts this year are Andrea Rasmussen, volleyball, and Carter Kruger, women’s basketball.
The trustees also heard a monitoring report on its policies concerning workforce preparedness, from Elaine Simmons, dean of Workforce Training and Community Education. The board directives, or ends, stipulate that “students will be prepared for success in the workplace.”
Barton has 28 career technical education programs and 19 of those saw an increase this year in the number of students completing the programs, Simmons said. The largest programs are paramedic, medical lab technician, nursing — both LPN and RN training are offered — and medical coding.
Dr. Heilman commented that Barton has created 16 new programs in the last six years.
The college monitors the number of students who complete these programs and successfully pass licensure exams on the first attempt. All 12 of the students completing the Dietary Manager program were success on their tests, and the overall pass rate was 79.4 percent.
The EMT-basic program had the lowest pass rate this year at 60 percent, although administrators said many students retake their exams and are successful the second time. Kansas changed the curriculum for emergency management technician and paramedic training in 2010, which accounted for some of the difficulties in those programs, Simmons said. More remedial training is being offered in hopes of improving future pass rates.
The college also monitors the success of workforce preparedness by surveying employers of Barton graduates, who comment on their technical skills, but also on their professionalism. “Just having a technical skill doesn’t necessarily keep you hired,” Simmons said. This year, the college has implemented the Essential Skills Project in an effort to stress “soft skills” such as customer service and accountability.