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School board approves early retirement; FFA students highlight convention

The Lenox School Board accepted the resignation of longtime teacher Diane Lange, heard a report from FFA students on their trip to the national convention, approved new hires, changed the amount of time for maternity leave, and talked about a natural gas risk pool at their monthly meeting on November 10.
Diane Lange submitted an application for early retirement effective at the end of the 2021-22 school year. In her letter to the board, Lange said she began her career in education in 1989 and since then has taught only kindergarten. This is her 33rd year teaching kindergarten. The board accepted her early retirement request.
Several FFA students and their teacher attended the board meeting and talked about their trip to the FFA National Convention in Indianapolis. On the way out, they stopped at a Case factory where they saw machinery built from start to finish. Their next stop was at Linden Hills Farms where they primarily raise dairy cattle. Then they stopped at Luthy Botanical Gardens and then on to Prairie Fruits and Creamery, a goat dairy and orchard. The RDM Shrimp Farm sells their seafood to restaurants. At the national convention, they went to a career fair and shopping mall, saw the assembly of an Apache sprayer, went to the Indianapolis Speedway and met Dale Grisby.
New hires were approved with Levi Marshall as bowling coach; Tyler Peterson and Cassie Still, co-assistant high school girls’ basketball coaches; Nick Hodges and Michael Nardini, volunteer high school girls’ basketball coaches; Cole Bond, Todd Parrish, Craig Christensen, Tom Christensen and Clay Nelson as volunteer high school wrestling coaches; Cayla Bonde, volunteer bowling coach.
The board discussed at length about the current maternity leave policy. Several school staff members were present and gave input on the policy. For maternity leave, the board approved to allow up to 12 weeks, instead of eight weeks) to be used from the employee’s sick leave balance. Additional accumulated sick leave days may be used if recommended by a medical professional. Paternity leave will allow up to five days to be used from accumulated sick leave for the purpose of caring for the newborn or mother. Additional adoption/fostering leave can take up to 10 days to be used from accumulated sick leave for the purpose of adopting or fostering a child.
Superintendent Dave Henrichs talked about a natural gas risk pool. He said the city is planning on purchasing insurance that will help with increases in spot pricing, but that will not help with general rise in natural gas costs. Past bills have been submitted to get a premium quote and those quotes should be back for the board to review at the December meeting.
The board approved the senior trip for November 19. Students planned to go to Kansas City, go to Jaeggers Paintball/Laser Tag, Dave and Busters, Great Wolf Lodge, Comedy Club, movie/escape room/and then return home.
The board approved the resignation of Marci Anderson as cook. Her resignation was submitted October 22 and her last day was November 12.

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