Cowden-Herrick Board Votes to Co-op All Sports w/Beecher City

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Published on April 23 2013 4:13 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

The Cowden-Herrick Board of Education has agreed to co-operate with the Beecher City School District in all sports.

The vote was to approve a new Co-op Agreement for junior high boys basketball, high school girls volleyball, and high school boys basketball, the final three sports not already involved in a co-op between the two districts.  The vote was contingent on creating a new mascot agreed on by both schools for all sports.

Cowden-Herrick Superintendent Darrell Gordon grew up in the Cowden-Herrick district and can remember when Cowden and Herrick consolidated.  Gordon said the decision then was to retain a mascot from the separate districts and said he still hears complaints about the decision made more than 40 years ago.  That's why he's pushing for a completely new mascot chosen by students from both Cowden-Herrick and Beecher City.  The Beecher City Board is expected to consider the issue at their next meeting.

In personnel moves, the Board honored high school principal Jerry Phillips' request to reduce his base salary by five percent and to cap his medical insurance contribution made by the Board on his behalf to save the District some money.  The Board also granted maternity leave for Mrs. Mayfield and to reduce regular bus routes from four hours per day to 3-1/2 hours per day for next school year.  Also approved was the retirement of Judith Stombaugh as of the end of the school year and to allow her personal time off with no pay.

The Cowden-Herrick Board also tabled proposed increases in lunch prices, but acknowledged something must be done since the District is losing $40,000 a year on lunches.  The Board increased the driver's education fee to $100, up from $60; increased athletic participation fees to $30 for one sport and another $20 for a second sport with a cap of $50; increased athletic event admission fees to $3 for adults and $2 for students and senior citizens; and increased book fees by $10 for textbooks and by $10 for workbooks for a total of $90 for registration fees.  The Board tabled a question of establishing a student parking fee, voted to drop transportation of students to the Bridges alternative education program and tabled whether to drop transportation of students to Project HELP.

Cowden-Herrick board members approved a senior class trip to St. Louis on May 13 with the students paying their own way; heard that the State owes the District almost $89,000 in transportation and special education funds; hired Doty Mowing to do mowing for the District; amended the school year calendar to make May 29 the last day of classes; and approved next year's school calendar with August 16 the first day for student attendance.  Junior Carlisle was again hired for bus maintenance next school year; a representative of the Illinois State Board of Education working with Gordon on fiscal matters indicated that the District should "get out of the hole" within two years; and a special meeting of the Board was scheduled for Thursday, May 2 in the Cowden Board room to seat members elected earlier this month.