Pratt school board honors Schrag and Skaggs

Jennifer Stultz
Pratt USD 382 board of education members acknowledged outgoing members Bill Skaggs and Brian Schrag (back row, from right) at their December 9, 2019 meeting.

Pratt USD 382 Board of Education members bid farewell to two-term representatives Brian Schrag and Bill Skaggs at their regular December 2019 meeting.

"We have appreciated their dedication and service to the school and community and I thought it fitting that they were able to motion and second the adornment of their final meeting," said Superintendent Tony Helfrich.

Schrag and Skaggs were elected to the board in 2011, then re-elected for another term in 2015. New board members taking their place are Jeremy Demuth and Michelle Ferbert.

As part of the superintendent's report, Helfrich spoke to school board members about an accountability report coming from the state that will focus on changes in college readiness with higher state benchmarks for student ACT scores.

"We have been focused on career-readiness in our education system, following state leadership," Helfrich said. "And we've done a great job adding programs in our district that meet those goals, but changes are coming."

Helfrich said he had spoken with plenty of other superintendents who were not happy with this sudden change of emphasis to assessing school success rates on the basis of students earning ACT scores in the 30 range or higher.

In other business, Helfrich said the district was in the process of assessing an auditory processing program with kindergarten students and have found that auditory issues at a young age can dramatically decrease school success.

"We are working with a SCK audiologist to find ways to supplement classroom work for those who have auditory processing difficulties as this can really help reading growth," Helfrich said.

The board held a special meeting Monday, December 30, 2019 to discuss property insurance renewal options and the approval of renewal of district property insurance. Their next meeting will be Monday, January 13, 2020.