AlWood School District administrators are considering a return to a traditional class schedule at the high school.

AlWood School District administrators are considering a return to a traditional class schedule at the high school.

Superintendent Shannon Bumann told the school board Jan. 17 the administration is looking at curriculum changes and abandoning the 8-block schedule.

Consideration is for the school day to begin at 8 a.m. with a 2:36 p.m. dismissal, according to Bumann.

“We are one of the last schools to return to a traditional schedule,” he said.

“This will provide an opportunity for classes the students want to take, yet with the same number of choices,” AlWood Middle/High School Principal Dave Mills added.

Bumann also provided information on classes that need to be offered, including vocational, such as mechanics and welding, and classes offered at Black Hawk College.

The superintendent also told the board focus is on health insurance for staff, in an attempt to curb cost increases. A 10- to 40-percent renewal increase is possible for coverage and he pointed out this is a considerable amount of money.

At this time, the administration is considering a “pool” with other districts, in an attempt to lower premiums.

“We will be meeting again soon,” Bumann told the board.

Bumann reported alarm system repairs and updates at the elementary school are complete and there will be an in-service to acquaint staff with any changes to the system.

A recent event was held with several guest speakers, primarily former students, who provided important information on programs and continuing education after high school graduation, board member John Barton noted, and said this was well attended and generated considerable interest.

Mills reported on the middle school honors assembly, the Mystic Dance group performance and the Hall of Fame awards that were well attended.

Middle school Chromebooks have arrived, and Mills explained how the students will make use of the technology, though the students will not take the Chromebooks home for use.

Once again, AlWood students, Mills and board member John Barton will participate in the FFA Polar Plunge at Galesburg.

“This is a great event for raising funds,” Mills said.

AlWood Elementary Principal Reggie Larson said a student dance-a-thon Jan. 16, when school was dismissed for the Martin Luther King holiday, raised close to $3,000 for the homeless at the Galesburg Rescue Mission, though a final amount is yet to be tallied.

“The funds are raised for a different charity each year,” Larson said.

The board approved renewal of the agreement with Gorenz and Associates as auditors.

After a closed session, the board employed Jonathan Steben as middle/high school band and choir teacher.

Steben attended Monmouth College, where he majored in music. He has a bachelor of arts in music education and is district instrumental band director at West Central since 2014.