Seeley Swan Pathfinder -


By Sigrid Olson

New Hires and Contracts Top School Board Discussion

Potomac School Board


POTOMAC - Resignations, the contract with the Potomac Greenough Community Center (PGCC) and Explorers funding were the main topics of discussion at the Potomac School Board meeting June 11.

With five resignations at the end of this school year, Potomac School administration is filling staff positions.

Custodian Randy Ruff, Explorers Coordinator and Supervisor Crissina Quinn and teachers Raynee Pace, Starla Dugger and Kristy Pohlman resigned. Pace accepted a teaching position near Bozeman and Pohlman and Quinn accepted teaching positions in Seeley Lake. Dugger is helping in her husband’s business also in Seeley Lake.

Potomac residents Jennifer Vogel and Greg Stevens were hired as the Special Education teacher and Maintenance/Custodian respectively. Ashley Olsen and John Wallace were hired as certified teachers at a special meeting June 15. Wallace also will serve as the Explorer/Friday Program coordinator and supervisor.

The PGCC and Potomac School have a partnership to share the use of the community center building and facilities. Discussion focused on terminology and definitions of shared and individual responsibilities for both parties including maintenance and building upkeep. A committee was formed to further explore and potentially redefine details in the annual contract.

First grade teacher Terri Klein gave a report on the Digital Academy language program which is part of teacher Sarah Schmill’s elective classes. Alongside Brenda Harrold, Klein paired up middle school students with students in her class to learn sign language. They learned animal names and wrote stories. For their presentations the older students read aloud each story while her first graders signed it. Klein said, “We have never done that before and it was really fun to see how they picked it [signing] up so quickly.”

Principal John Rouse reported on the funding for the Friday Explorers Program. Potomac School collaborated with other school districts in hopes of gaining ‘bonus points’ that could be used for Friday program funding. He learned June 7 that the funding from OPI was denied.

The school board approved the use of excess REAP funds to cover the salary and fringe expenses for a Friday’s Program coordinator/supervisor in the amount of about $8,000 for the 2018-2019 school year. The Parent group is responsible for providing one parent volunteer each Friday the program is implemented as well as all other expenses for the Friday program.

In other business:

• For part of professional development and instructional coaching funded by the Literacy Grant, teachers received new IPads and have access to make video recordings of themselves teaching which they can use to reflect and improve.

• Latest security measures include a door buzzing system at the front and back doors.

• Jake Nissen and Marty Preston were approved to coach flag football.

• Boys and girls basketball, track and volleyball coaches are still needed.

• Discussion centered around volunteer capabilities regarding permissions for transportation of students to and from games. The resolution included clarification on volunteer responsibilities and expectations within the school’s handbook.

The Potomac School Board will meet twice over the summer, June 29 and Aug. 13. Both meetings will be at 7 p.m. in the Potomac School Library.


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