Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

April 12, 2013

Neoga OKs co-op with Stew-Stras

Jackson Adams Daily News
Effingham Daily News

---- — At its meeting Thursday, Neoga school board voted to approve an intergovernmental agreement with Stewardson-Strasburg school district to co-op several programs in an effort that could allow both districts to share teachers and staff.

The cooperative agreement, which will still need to be approved by the Stewardson-Strasburg school board, would allow the districts to share a social worker, as well as business, agriculture and industrial technology staff. The districts would also co-op their early childhood education program.

Superintendent Chuck Castle said the contract would currently have staff spending half of each day at Neoga schools and half at Stewardson-Strasburg schools. The districts would split the costs of transporting staff between districts.

Michele Lindenmeyer, who will take over as Stewardson-Strasburg superintendent after Steve Harsy retires in July, spoke before the board about the potential agreement.

”I look forward to working with all of you in the future,” she said.

The board had initially planned to also vote on sharing school psychologist services, but the discussion was tabled for a later date.

Castle said the only thing that will change from the way the programs are currently ran is in the early childhood education program.

”The only discrepancy between sharing services is the day care,” he said. “We’re both running it the way we do now. It’s only if we’re going to go over 20 kids that we’ll need to have a discussion about how to change things.”

The board also approved a bid of $99,000 for a proposed bus turnaround at Neoga Middle School. The project would include rebuilding and repairing sidewalks around the school. The cost will leave about $11,000 in the district’s Health Life Safety Fund.

Jackson Adams can be reached at 217-347-7151, ext. 131, or jackson.adams@effinghamdailynews.com.