Waterloo Career Center drawing

A preliminary drawing from InVision Architects of Waterloo showing the proposed new entryway for an expanded high school career center at Central Middle School.

COURTESY DRAWING

WATERLOO — Plans for further expansion of the Waterloo Career Center will be presented to the Board of Education next month.

The board Monday set a public hearing for 6 p.m. Oct. 23 on the project. Officials with Invision Architects are finalizing designs for a two-story renovation on the north end of Central Middle School, estimated to cost $15.6 million. After the hearing, the district will seek bids for the project.

Five career and technical education programs have already begun at the center with another 10 planned. They are open to students at all three Waterloo Community Schools’ high schools. An agreement also is in place to allow Cedar Falls High School students to enroll.

Superintendent Jane Lindaman said bids are expected to return in December for possible board approval. If a contract is approved, work would get started in January on the second floor, which has been vacated. Remodeling would happen over two winters.

“A portion of the building will be completed in August,” said Lindaman. Four more programs would be added next fall with another six starting in the fall of 2019 and 2020. No announcements have been made about what those programs will be.

The meeting also included installing newly elected board members. On Sept. 12, Shanlee McNally was re-elected to her at-large seat while Astor Williams and Endya Johnson were elected to the Director District 1 and 4 seats, respectively. Mike Kindschi and Angela Weekley, who stepped down after not running for another term, were presented with clocks to honor their time on the board.

After the board members were sworn in, officers were elected. McNally and Sue Flynn retained their positions of president and vice president. No one else was nominated for the positions.

In other business, the board:

Increased hourly wages for substitute paraeducator/clerical staff to $9 per hour. The rate has been $7.25 per hour. Flynn praised the increase but added “I would hope to see more at some point.”

Approved a $823,923 contract for 2017-18 with Tri County Child and Family Development Council to provide Head Start Early Childhood services in the Waterloo Schools’ elementaries and the Elk Run Early Childhood Center. The contract represents a 1 percent increase from last year.

Adopted a written science curriculum for kindergarten through fifth grade at a cost of $96,000 during the next two years. Some units of the curriculum, aligned to the new Iowa Science Standards, were written by more than 50 district teachers through grant partnerships with the University of Northern Iowa. Others will need to be written and implemented with district funding of $64,000 during this fiscal year and $32,000 during the next one.

Submitted a request for $816,794 in modified allowable growth to the state’s School Budget Review Committee for 2016-17 English language learner program expenditures beyond funding that was received. The increase will be paid for with cash reserve levies in the next fiscal year. Officials said the district typically has more than 800 students who receive the services each year.

Recognized the Exchange Club of Waterloo as a new Partner in Education with Irving Elementary School.

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Waterloo Schools / HCC Reporter

Education reporter for the Courier

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