Houston School Board members received updates on several projects on Tuesday.
•Heard presentations from vendors on upgrading the district’s radio communications system, which includes equipment for buses and portable units used by administrators. Representatives from two companies described a variety of issues – ranging from equipment to reception to coverage areas. The council took no action.
•Heard a presentation from Brent Hall, Athletic Director, on the possible implementation of a soccer program in the district. He described the costs associated with uniforms, coaches, equipment and payment of officials. He also asked members to consider places to play and whether opening up the program could reduce enrollment in other sports. Discussions will continue.
•As recommended by the City of Houston, the school district will use Archer Elgin Surveying & Engineering of Rolla for the work required to relocate an 8-inch sewer main in the vicinity of Tiger Stadium. The move is necessary for the major improvements planned with the track. The district will reimburse the city for the engineering costs. City Administrator Scott Avery appeared at the meeting and explained that two companies had responded to a website posting.
Dr. Allen Moss, Superintendent, reported that a pre-application for the Track Grant has been submitted by Grant Writer Elaine Campbell and that some minor edits will be included in the final application submission.
• Heard student liaison Andy Durham report on the hoop queen activities scheduled for February 11 and a dance the following day which will feature a $5 catered meal and music by the jazz band.
• I learned that an extra focus is going on in middle school to help students improve their math skills.
• I heard that Simple Grow, a Houston company, provides athletics tickets to attend the Tournament of Champions in Springfield which features elite basketball teams in the country.
•Congratulations to Hall, who played an important role in scheduling tournaments at Houston High School’s new gymnasium. In addition to the district volleyball tournament, district basketball games for girls and boys are scheduled there. Next week, the first Houston Community Foundation basketball tournament is underway. The various tournaments have brought additional business into the community.
• Heard Moss requesting information on how quickly additional vocational education should be added to the Piney River Technical Center, and he said he would work on the next school calendar with an adoption scheduled for February or March.
• Recognize the efforts of the board during Board Appreciation Month.
• I have learned that the district is always looking for community volunteers for the annual Citizens for Education academic awards program.