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Red and black ribbon day for GBHS
USD 428 gets $300K for technology
new slt school board
Students were recognized at Monday's Great Bend School Board meeting. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO

The Great Bend USD 428 Board of Education had a standing room only crowd Monday for the first few minutes of its meeting. Students, coaches and parents filled the meeting area and spilled into the hallway as Activities Director David Meter introduced six coaches, who in turn introduced all-conference student athletes who excelled in fall sports. The Great Bend High School Marching Band was also recognized for its fall honors.
“We’re very proud of the (students) for representing GBHS,” said tennis coach Dustin Wheeler.
“We had a great year,” Band Director Mark DeWald said.
Superintendent Brad Reed agreed.
“It was a great fall,” he said, adding he hopes the coming season will also be successful. “It was a pleasure to watch all of you,” he told the students. “I am even more proud of the things you do as young men and women in the community.”
Other coaches present were Travis McAtee, golf; Todd Kaiser, cross country; Tony Crough, football; Gus Prieto, soccer; and Kelsey Perry, volleyball.

Technology grant
In action items, the board accepted $327,405 from the USD 428 Education Foundation. The grant comes from the Dorothy M. Morrison Foundation and will be used to support the district’s technology initiative. Next month Technology Director Ryan Axman will give a detailed account of the plans for this money.
“It’s going to go a long way in helping us meet our technology initiative,” Reed said.
Other gifts and grants accepted by the board Monday:
• CDI Head Start, following its relocation within Great Bend, is donating playground equipment to USD 428.
• GBHS received $3,000 from the Perkins Reserve Grant for the purchase of health science equipment. Purchases will include two treatment/demonstration tables.
• The Fort Larned Old Guard’s Ticket to Ride Grant for $406.50 will pay Park Elementary School sixth graders’ admission to the Fort Larned National Historic Site.
Reed also noted that Rotary Club will continue its tradition of donating dictionaries to third graders in the district. The books should all be distributed by the end of the year. Reed is also scheduled to speak at Rotary on Dec. 7.

Other business
In other business, the board:
• Heard an update on Sept. 11 storm damage. It totaled $305,000 district-wide, according to Assistant Superintendent Khris Thexton. Insurance covers most of the damage, after the district’s $25,000 deductible.
• Thexton answered a question about a district credit card that someone attempted to make fraudulent charges on. The attempted charges were for things such as an AmazonPrime purchase, he recalled. “It was a dead giveaway that it wasn’t a school (purchase).” An employee at Intrust Bank, which issued the card, recognized that, called the school and the card was canceled. There was no loss to the district. It is not known who tried to make the charges; Thexton said the number may have been randomly selected by the would-be thief.
• Assistant Superintendent John Popp’s curriculum and instruction report included information on advanced placement (AP) courses at GBHS. At present there are junior and senior AP English courses. Administrators are looking to implement AP calculus, AP chemistry, and AP U.S. history next year. The following year will include another round of AP courses.  
“We have a plan to continue on with AP courses as long as they’re well attended,” Popp said. The district will send instructors to training on how to present the advanced material. Popp said he’s heard positive comments from other districts that have added more advanced courses. “It just kind of elevates all the instruction.”
• The board had a 20-minute executive session to discuss real property, and a 50-minute executive session to discuss personnel.