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Tea school board discusses possible autism program

The Tea Area School District board of education held their monthly meeting Nov. 9.

Conrad Pick presided over the meeting in the absence of board president John Herr.

Jody Taylor, special education director, presented an autism program proposal to the board. Currently the district has 15 students identified as being on the autism spectrum. However, the way the state funding works for special education only funds for 10 of those students because that is how many the district had last year. New funding is awarded in July 2016.

With Taylor’s proposal, she projects the district could save $42,000 per child per year with the program. The program would include hiring a teacher who specializes in autism, paraprofessionals and training.

The board took no action at the November meeting.

Clair Willemssen, construction manager for the Tea Area School District building projects, updated the board on the progress at Legacy Elementary. The bus loop is paved and striped and is open for parking. They plan to pour sidewalks in the next few weeks. They will hook up the electrical box Nov. 25. That will affect the neighborhood to the north of the school and the high school and intermediate school that day. Gas service is expected to come in this week.

He expects concrete to be poured inside this week. The exterior should be wrapped up this week for framing. Some siding has started being put on the west side of the building. Brick veneer started on Monday and should last a couple of weeks. With the window openings, they have measured them for aluminum framings. Roofing is about 40 percent complete. They have to have dry weather to put on the roof. Any moisture will negatively affect the glue part of the roofing process.

Superintendent Jennifer Lowery had a pre-construction meeting for the high school Nov. 11.

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