A long-term contract with MaryKay Moe to teach science for grades 7-12 from Jan. 2, 2020 until the end of the school year (101 out of 180 contract days) was approved by the Nevis School Board Monday night.

Moe, who has been working as a long-term substitute science teacher since Joel Blanchfield resigned in November, is listed on the contract as a step 5 licensed teacher. She will receive a salary of $24,004 for that time period, which is pro-rated from the listed salary of $42,780 for the entire year.

“We’d like to engage in a contract with her for the remainder of the year,” Superintendent Gregg Parks told the board.

Parks explained this contract will not continue into the next school year and the position will remain posted, adding so far there has only been one applicant and that person was not licensed.

“What happens in January if somebody applies for that position?” board member Andy Lindow asked.

“My recommendation is that at this point we’ve had a lack of continuity in this position,” Parks said. “This is the third teacher we’ve had in there. I think, at this point, we continue to grow with her, work with her, mentor her and support her as the year goes on. I think we owe it to our kids. The continuity piece is huge for them. It’s a very difficult position we put her in. We have some kids who are very wary at this point. It’s going to take a bit to earn their trust and I think we owe it to her at this point to give her an honest try and allow her to move forward.”

Parks said that he and principal Brian Michaelson have spent a lot of time in the classroom working with Moe, and that three paraprofessionals help out in the science classroom in the course of a day to provide extra support.

“Mr. Frank is right next door and is also mentoring her directly,” he said.

In other action, the board:

  • Approved the teacher seniority list as presented. Paul Schroeder, who was hired in 1986, was at the top of the list, followed by Amy Schroeder with a start date of 1990, and Jodi Sandmeyer and Olaf Netteberg who started teaching in 1994. Of the teachers listed, 14 have been with the district more than 20 years, six have been at Nevis School more than 10 years and 26 have been at the school less than 10 years.

  • Heard the district’s cash balance for November was $1,876,101.

  • Accepted donations totaling $1,688 that included a $500 from the Nevis Volunteer Firepersons for the Special Olympics and $500 from the Itasca Mantrap Electric Cooperative for the community education department.

  • Heard a presentation from students and staff who were on the Costa Rica trip that shared many pictures from their adventures.

  • Approved an overnight field trip request for the boys basketball team to go to Rushford Dec. 26-28.

The next board meeting will be the annual truth in taxation hearing at 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 23. The January board meeting is scheduled for Monday, Jan. 27 at 7 p.m.