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Board of Education
Board reorganization
Leo Anderson
Leo Anderson
The school board on April 15 elected Leo Anderson as its president for the next year. The board elected Ruth Johnson as vice president. Board Member Joe Anthuis was also nominated for the office.

The board elected Pam Steele to continue to serve as board secretary, and Chief Financial Officer Kendra Hutsell to continue as board treasurer.

Oath of office
Oath of office
Oath of office
The Ray-Pec school board on April 15 met for a brief reorganization meeting.

The board certified the results of the April 8 election. The vote totals for the candidates, listed in order of filing, are: Barbara A. Boucher, 1,175 votes; Ruth Johnson, 1077 votes; Kim York, 1,328 votes; Melinda Houdyshell, 1,031 votes; Tonya Long, 723 votes; and Mary DuBray, 484 votes.

There were three seats up for election. Board Secretary Pam Steele administered the oath of office to Kim York, Barbara Boucher, and  Ruth Johnson.

School board election
Voters on April 8 elected incumbent Kim York of Raymore, Barbara Boucher of Peculiar, and incumbent Ruth Johnson of Peculiar to serve on the Ray-Pec school board. They were elected to serve three-year terms. The board is scheduled to meet for a reorganization meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 15, at the Administrative Services Center, 21005 S. School Rd.

Unofficial election results from Cass County show these vote totals for candidates, listed in order of filing:
  • Barbara A. Boucher, 1,175 votes
  • Ruth Johnson, 1077 votes
  • Kim York, 1,328 votes
  • Melinda Houdyshell, 1,031 votes
  • Tonya Long, 723 votes
  • Mary DuBray, 484 votes

Board member Kyle Gillespie's term ends in April 2014. He did not file for re-election.

Review of April 1, 2014, work session
Ray-Pec school board members met in a work session on April 1 to learn more about three topics – employee insurance, the Bring Your Own Device pilot project, and the development of the 2014-2015 budget.

During a presentation about the budget, Superintendent Dr. Kari Monsees showed how the budget priorities being considered align with the recently approved Strategic Plan. There was extensive discussion about the budget as it relates to three key areas of the Strategic Plan: Student Success, Workforce Satisfaction and Engagement, and Technology Optimization. Board members asked many questions about the budget plan and provided valuable feedback for Monsees and Chief Financial Officer Kendra Hutsell as they continue to refine the budget plan.

The next meeting of the board is a reorganization meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 15. The next regular business meeting is at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 17, at the Administrative Services Center.

To read a recap of the work session, go here: Board Update

Review of March 27, 2014, school board meeting
Although there were several action items on the agenda, most of the attention at the March 27, 2014, meeting was devoted to two informational items: an update on the 2014-2015 budget and a report about bullying prevention.

The board reviewed preliminary budget information for 2014-2015. The school district fiscal year begins July 1. To have a budget ready for board approval in June, district leaders begin planning in January.  Superintendent Dr. Kari Monsees and Chief Financial Officer Kendra Hutsell provided an update on the budget planning.  Materials presented to the board included a summary of Operating Funds, along with the past year actual revenues, current budget amounts and budget projections for next year.  Total operating revenues are anticipated to increase by approximately $2.5 million, or 4.7 percent, for the 2014-2015 fiscal year.

More information will be shared at the April 1 board work session. During the work session, board members will hear about potential expenditure items, including allocating funds for salary and, adding new staff positions and programs, increases for supplies and purchased services, and capital improvements and maintenance projects.

2014-2015 Preliminary Budget Report

Jay Harris, Assistant Superintendent for Administrative Services, and Kristel Barr, Director of Student Services and Secondary Education, presented a bullying prevention update to the board. Before their presentation, three patrons spoke on the topic during the public comment portion of the meeting.

A highlight of the report was the announcement of a new method for reporting concerns. Sometime in April, the district plans to debut a new online reporting tool called “Quick Tips.” The Quick Tips site allows users to report any issue of concern. A user may also attach a photo or document. The user may remain anonymous, or may provide contact information.

Bullying prevention update

The board meeting included special recognition of
Maddi Brusick, who earned All-State honors by placing 14th in the 50-yard freestyle event.  Fifth grader Joel Miles also received special recognition at the meeting. Joel won the Ray-Pec Spelling Bee and the Cass County Spelling Bee. He will represent Cass County at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in late May in Washington, D.C.

In other action, the board approved hiring Strategos International, based in Grandview, to provide Active Shooter and Intruder Response Training (ASIRT) for all Ray-Pec staff for the 2014-2015 school year. The board also re-hired Kendra Hutsell as Chief Financial Officer. (She had resigned last month, but then reconsidered.)

The board approved the district’s application to become a candidate school for the International Baccalaureate Program for the 2015-2016 school year. The board also approved an updated agreement with Belton Regional Medical Center for athletic training services, and the February pupil transportation ridership report. The board also heard reports about the A+ Program, the district's Federal Programs, and the Technology Program.

To read the recap of the entire board meeting and see links to other supporting documents, go here: Board Update

International Baccalaureate application
Ridership summary

Review of Feb. 27, 2014, School Board meeting
The Board of Education on Feb. 27, 2014, approved the Ray-Pec Strategic Plan for 2013-2017. Superintendent Dr. Kari Monsees provided an overview of the plan, which was developed using Baldrige Criteria for continuous improvement. The plan supports the district's mission, vision, and collective commitments, and includes a summary of feedback outlining opportunities for improvement in the district.

The plan is organized into eight focus areas, with a total of 22 SMART goals, 30 strategies, and 107 action steps. An important part of the plan is the ongoing review and analysis process.

The eight focus areas are: 
  • Student Success
  • Workforce Satisfaction and Engagement
  • Fiscal Responsibility
  • Technology Optimization
  • Leadership and Governance
  • Performance Measurement
  • Stakeholder Satisfaction and Engagement
  • Communication

You can read the entire plan, a summary, or a one-page overview:

The board recognized students selected for the Missouri All-State Bands. The board approved a high school band trip to Hawaii and a contract for architectural services.The board also received updates about the Energy Management program, the Public School Foundation, and the International Baccalaureate program. To read a recap of the entire board meeting, go here: Board update

Review of Jan. 23, 2014, School Board meeting
The Ray-Pec School Board on Jan. 23 approved the 2014-2015 calendar. The first day of school will be Wednesday, Aug. 13. Winter break will begin with an early dismissal on Dec. 19, and students will return to classes on Jan. 5, 2015. Spring break will be March 16-20, 2015. The last day of school will be May 21. Here is a link to the calendar: http://www.raypec.k12.mo.us/quicklinks.aspx?CID=187

The board recognized Raymore Elementary School Principal Michelle Hofmann, who was named the 2013-2014 Distinguished Principal by the Kansas City Suburban Elementary Principal Association. She will be recognized at the Missouri Association of Elementary School Principals (MAESP) Leadership and Learning Conference March 8-11 at Tan-Tar-A Resort.

The board approved the selection of incite Design Studio to provide design services identified in the district’s Capital Improvement Plan for the next three years for projects estimated to cost $1.5 million and below. A formal contract is expected to be presented at the February school board meeting for approval. The board also heard a review of the district’s health services program. To read a recap of the meeting, go here: Board Update

School Board Recognition Week
School Board members
Ray-Pec School Board
Gov. Jay Nixon proclaimed the week of Jan. 26-Feb. 1 as School Board Recognition Week in Missouri. At the Jan. 23 school board meeting, Superintendent Dr. Kari Monsees read Gov. Nixon's proclamation and thanked board members for their service. Our school board members are elected by local constituents and receive no compensation. In the front row, from left: Dana Hille, Maria Davies, Ruth Johnson and Board President Kim York. In the back row: Board Vice President Leo Anderson, Joe Anthuis, and Kyle Gillespie.

Six candidates file for election
Six candidates have filed for the school board election on April 8, 2014. There are three positions available with three-year terms. The candidates, in order of filing, are: Barbara A. Boucher of Peculiar, Ruth Johnson of Peculiar, Kim York of Raymore, Melinda Houdyshell of Raymore, Tonya Long of Peculiar, and Mary DuBray of Raymore. Board members whose terms expire in 2014 are Kyle Gillespie, Ruth Johnson, and Kim York.

Review of Jan. 9, 2014, School Board work session

The Ray-Pec School Board met in a work session Thursday night, Jan. 9, 2014, to review a draft of the district’s strategic plan. Revisions are continuing to the plan, which focuses on continuous improvement in eight focus areas, including Student Success, Workplace Focus, and Fiscal Responsibility. Board members agreed to remove one goal statement from the draft. The plan is expected to be presented to the board of education for final approval in February.

Review of Dec. 19, 2013, School Board meeting
The board of education on Dec. 19 approved a memorandum of understanding with the MidWest A’s, a collegiate summer baseball organization, to allow the organization to use the Ray-Pec varsity baseball facility for summer league games from the end of May through July 13. The memorandum outlined the fees, conditions and available dates. The board also approved a list of students who applied for graduation at the end of first semester and heard reviews of the guidance and student intervention programs. The board meeting included two special recognitions. The board recognized Senior Softball Player Rebekah Mueller on being named to the All-State Second Team for the second consecutive year. She was a catcher for the Ray-Pec softball team. The board recognized Senior Scott Schaffner on being selected by the Associated Press as the All-State Second Team Class 6 Tight End. You can see photos at www.raypec.k12.mo.us. To read a recap of the entire board meeting, go here: Board update

Candidates file for April election
Filing period opens
School Board Secretary Pam Steele, standing, gives instructions to five candidates who filed this morning for the school board election on April 8, 2014. The filing period opened at 8 a.m. today. There are three positions available with three-year terms. Candidates as of this morning: Barbara A. Boucher of Peculiar, Ruth Johnson of Peculiar, Kim York of Raymore, Melinda Houdyshell of Raymore, and Tonya Long of Peculiar. Board members whose terms expire in 2014 are Kyle Gillespie, Ruth Johnson, and Kim York. Filing will end at 5 p.m. on Jan. 21, 2014.

School board candidate filing information
The Raymore-Peculiar R-II School District will accept declarations of candidacy from any person interested in running for a position on the School Board in the April 8, 2014, election. Persons interested may file at the superintendent's offices located at 21005 S. School Road, Peculiar, MO, 64078.

Filing will begin at 8 a.m. Dec. 17, 2013, and will continue during the district's regular business hours, which are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Filing will not occur on days that the school district's offices are closed due to inclement weather. Filing will not occur on the following holidays when the school district's offices are closed: Dec. 24 and 25, 2013, and Jan. 1 and Jan. 20, 2014. Filing will end at 5 p.m. on Jan. 21, 2014.

There are three (3) positions available with three-year terms.  Board members whose terms expire in 2014 are Kyle Gillespie, Ruth Johnson and Kim York.

Placement on the Ballot

Order of filing will determine the placement on the ballot.  This is in accordance with Board Policy BBB - School Board Elections.

Please contact School Board Secretary Pam Steele at 816-892-1311 or at with any questions.

Review of Nov. 21, 2013, School Board meeting
The board of education on Nov. 21 approved the audit of the district’s finances for the year ending June 30, 2013. Brad Steele, a certified public accountant and firm partner from Westbrook & Co., P.C., Richmond, Mo., presented a summary report.

Steele said the district had a clean audit with no state or federal findings. In audit terms, a “finding” is an area of weakness or deficiency that needs modification or correction. A finding may occur for a variety of reasons. For example, the auditors may note missing documents, improvements needed in travel procedures or record keeping, or make suggestions to improve cash handling or internal audit procedures.

The audit included fund balances as of June 30, 2013. The district’s financial status, as reflected in total net assets, increased by $1,456,585. He reported on the district’s outstanding long-term debt. Outstanding debt decreased to $58,022,595 from $61,664,184 in 2012.

Steele said the district’s reserves were at 30.65 percent on June 30, 2013, down slightly from 31.28 percent the year prior. He said the balance indicates that the board and administration have been proactive and said the auditing firm likes to see “healthy” reserve balances at 20 percent and higher. The audit report stated that “The Raymore-Peculiar School District continues to be in good financial health and is committed to strong financial management. The district is limiting spending by budgeting conservatively and planning for future projects.”

The board of education on Thursday also approved designation of hazardous transportation zones, bids for Chromebooks, a budget transfer and a purchasing agreement. In addition, the board heard reviews of the Transportation, Parents as Teachers, Early Childhood, and Special Education programs. To read a recap of the board meeting, go here: Board Update

Review of Nov. 7, 2013, School Board work session
The School Board met in a work session Thursday night, Nov. 7, 2013, to learn more about the the district's job analysis and classification study and capital improvement planning.

The school district hired Educational Management Solutions (EMS) to conduct the job analysis and classification study. EMS has been working with Lisa Hatfield, Director of Human Resources, on the project. The first part of the project was to gather input from staff and supervisors to create up-to-date, consistent, understandable and legally compliant job descriptions. The project also included a market analysis that included a review of internal equity, salary placement practices, salary structures, and a comparison of salary and benefits to competing employers. EMS has recommended several changes to include modifications to salary schedules, changes in some job titles, changes for internal equity, and adjustments for market competitiveness.The recommendations come with price tags, and board members and administrators discussed how to prioritize implementation of some of the proposed changes. To review the presentation, go here: EMS Update

Board members also learned more about the district's capital improvement planning process. The district identifies its needs by conducting a facilities assessment study, a roof assessment and from a review of work orders and feedback from Buildings and Grounds staff. In addition, school administrators submit requests as part of the budget process. Facility assessments include many categories; site, structural, mechanical, safety and security, and educational adequacy. Assistant Superintendent Jay Harris showed a matrix that summarized facility assessments at Ray-Pec schools.He showed roofing studies, and information from an audit to determine accessibility for persons with disabilities. Some capital improvement funds are spent on leases. Improvements to athletic facilities are generally more visible than some other improvements. Areas of focus include safety and security enhancements, ADA compliance, parking lots and roads, and technology infrastructure. To review the presentation, go here: Capital Improvements Presentation
To review the Capital Improvements Plan, go here: Capital Improvements Plan

Review of Oct. 24, 2013, School Board meeting
The board of education on Oct. 24 recognized three high school students who are semi-finalists in the 59th annual National Merit Scholarship program. The board recognized Christopher "Kit" Leonard and Elizabeth Daugherty. Also recognized, but not present, was Laura Wiseman, who had a conflict with a college course.

The board approved bus routes for 2013-2014. The board also heard reviews of the district's library media center program and the safety and security program. To read a recap of the board meeting, go here: Board Update

To see the safety and security presentation, go here: Safety and Security Program Review

Review of Sept. 26, 2013, School Board meeting
The board of education on Sept. 26 recognized 15 students who achieved top scores on the 2013 standardized tests. The board announced the names of six high school students who earned perfect scores on end-of-course exams, and nine students who earned the highest scores on Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) tests.

The board took action to handle the disposal of surplus property in a new way. The board approved a memorandum of understanding with GovDeals to handle the sale of surplus property through an online auction service similar to Ebay.

The board also heard reviews of the public relations and buildings and grounds programs. To read a recap of the board meeting, go here: Board Update

Review of Aug. 22, 2013, School Board meeting
The board of education on Aug. 22 set the 2013-2014 tax rate at $5.0397, the same rate since the 2003-2004 school year. That total includes $1.2897 for debt service and $3.75 for the general fund. The district's total assessed valuation for the 2013 tax year is $464,386,168.

The approval followed a public hearing at which no members of the public spoke.
Notice of tax rate hearing
Tax rate history

To read the staff wellness program review, go here: Staff Wellness

To read a recap of the entire board meeting, go here: Board Update

Review of July 18, 2013, School Board meeting
During the Ray-Pec School Board meeting on July 18, 2013, Board President Kim York introduced new Superintendent Dr. Kari Monsees and welcomed him to his first school board meeting as the district's leader.

Monsees, who officially began work on July 1, thanked York for the welcome, and said he has spent the first few weeks meeting with year-round employees, including those at the Administrative Services Center. He has attended chamber of commerce meetings in Peculiar and Raymore, and is beginning to meet people in the community. He also has been spending time meeting with the Cabinet and preparing for the start of the new school year. He noted that an Administrative Retreat was scheduled for July 26 and a School Board Retreat for Aug. 1. Both retreats will include discussion of major district initiatives, including the strategic plan.

New Associate Principal
The board approved hiring Kristina Martin as the new Associate Principal at Ray-Pec High School, pending her release from her current contract. Martin was the assistant principal at the Ray-Pec Freshman Center before leaving Ray-Pec in 2009 to accept a position as head principal at Archie High School. She is returning to Ray-Pec from the Park Hill School District, where she was Coordinator of Educational Programs during the 2012-2013 school year. Martin will replace Ryan Gooding, who is the new Technology Director for the district.

Tax levy hearing
The board scheduled the annual tax levy public hearing for 6:45 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 22. The hearing will immediately precede the regular monthly meeting.

Child Nutrition Program Review
The board also heard a review of the district's Child Nutrition program:
Child Nutrition Program Review

To read the entire board meeting review, go here: Board update

Past board meeting news
Board meeting recaps:

Board Members
Pam Steele
Secretary to the Board of Education

21005 S. School Rd.
P.O. Box 789
Peculiar, MO  64078

Ph: (816) 892-1311
Fx: (816) 892-1380

Monday - Friday
8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
The Raymore-Peculiar School District's seven-member Board of Education is elected by the patrons of the school district. Members are elected to serve three-year terms without pay.
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Raymore-Peculiar School District
21005 S School Rd.
Peculiar, MO 64078
Ph: (816) 892-1300
Fax: (816) 892-1380
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