2017-2018 Board Meetings

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Here are the Raymore-Peculiar School Board members. In back, from left to right: Paul Coffman, Kim Bailey, Billy King, and Ashley Jones. In front: Kim York, Susan Edmonsond, and Ruth Johnson.

During its April 16 reorganization meeting, the Board elected Bailey to serve as president; Coffman to serve as vice president; Pam Steele as secretary; and Cynthia Byous as treasurer. Johnson was elected as the delegate to the Missouri School Boards' Association. Edmonsond was elected as the alternate delegate.

Oath of office

Ashley Jones and Billy King take the oath of office during the April 16, 2018, special reorganization meeting of the School Board.

The two were elected on April 3 to serve three-year terms. They replace Ryan Wescoat and Maria Davies, who did not seek re-election.

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Watch the April 16, 2018, reorganization meeting:

Review of March 22, 2018, Board Meeting

The School Board on March 22 approved staffing changes for 2018-2019, the February 2018 ridership report, and bids for site improvements. The Board also heard reports about the A+ program, the Transportation program, and middle school grading and reporting. Watch the meeting here:

All-State Wrestler

The School Board on March 22 recognized Garrett LaBelle for placing 6th at the State Wrestling meet. Garrett competed in the 132-pound weight class in Class 4. His finish qualified him as an All-State Wrestler. He is pictured with Board Member Ryan Wescoat.

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Tech Theatre students

The School Board recognized four Ray-Pec High School students for their achievements at the 2018 Missouri State Thespian Festival. This group placed fourth in the Missouri Tech Challenge, a competition in technical theatre skills. From left: Becca Bessette, Nick Hime, Peter Dyreng, and Riley Linn are pictured with Board Member Maria Davies. In addition to the Tech Challenge, Nick placed third in sound; Riley placed first in lighting; and Peter received one of three technical theatre scholarships awarded at the festival.

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Technology Student Association presents plaques to Board

Industrial Technology students presented School Board members on March 22 with laser-etched black granite plaques to honor their service.

Back row: Board Member Paul Coffman, Teacher Ivan Robison, Zach Kerfoot, Board President Kim Bailey, Board Member Ryan Wescoat, and Jacob Boles. Front row: Board Member Susan Edmonsond, Board Member Ruth Johnson, Board Vice President Kim York, Board Member Maria Davies, and Amanda Vega.

Review of March 8, 2018, work session

During its budget work session last night, the School Board discussed spending priorities for the 2018-2019 school year. Watch the meeting:

Review of Feb. 22, 2018, Board meeting

The Board on Feb. 22 heard about plans for Summer School, which is scheduled from June 4 to 28. The Board heard reports about the District's gifted program, the energy management program, and the Foundation. The Board also approved applications for vocational enhancement grants. Read a recap of the meeting: Board Update.

Watch the meeting:

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Board recognizes Todd Schnake for directing 100th show

The School Board on Thursday night recognized Ray-Pec High School Theatre Teacher Todd Schnake for his milestone achievement of directing 100 theatrical productions for the Raymore-Peculiar School District. He is pictured with School Board President Kim Bailey.

Board thanks Real Life Church

The School Board thanked Real Life Church for work by its members to remodel and organize the Panther Closet to support Ray-Pec students. Church members also provided child care services at the Good Neighbors, Strong Community conference earlier this month and participated in the Ray-Pec Foundation 5K last year. Lead Pastor Sean Petrie, center, and his wife, Diane Petrie, accepted the recognition certificate at the Feb. 22 Board meeting. They are pictured with School Board President Kim Bailey, at left.

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Board recognizes Stonegate as PLC Exemplary School

The Raymore-Peculiar School Board on Feb. 22 recognized Stonegate Elementary School for being named a Professional Learning Communities Exemplary School.

This year, 16 schools statewide were honored. Missouri PLC is a school improvement initiative sponsored by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Pictured, from left: School Board President Kim Bailey, Stonegate Principal Doug Becker, Stonegate Secretary Stephanie Como, and Teacher Deanna Dawson. 

Board recognizes Peculiar Elementary as PLC Exemplary School

The Raymore-Peculiar School Board on Feb. 22 recognized Peculiar Elementary School for being named a Professional Learning Communities Exemplary School.

This year, 16 schools statewide were honored. Missouri PLC is a school improvement initiative sponsored by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Pictured: School Board President Kim Bailey and Principal Rob Weida.

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Review of Feb. 8, 2018, work session

The Board on Feb. 8, 2018, met to receive an update on the District's April 3 ballot issue and to review the Capital Improvement project list.

The District is asking voters for a 75-cent operating levy increase, Proposition R-P, on the April 3 ballot. At the same time, the debt service tax rate is scheduled to decrease by 30 cents, resulting in a net tax rate increase of 45 cents. A simple majority is required for approval.

In providing an update about Proposition R-P, Superintendent Dr. Kari Monsees reviewed a list of frequently asked questions that is posted on the District web site. Prop R-P FAQs

Dr. Monsees also shared a presentation about the levy issue. The presentation includes information leading to the decision to seek the increase, information about the ballot issue, and information on how generated funds would be used. Dr. Monsees has been sharing this same presentation with staff, parent, and community groups. Prop R-P Presentation

As part of the discussion related to Prop R-P, the Board also reviewed staff retention data and the results of exit surveys. Exit survey update

Capital Improvement project list

Dr. Bryan Pettengill, Assistant Superintendent for Administrative Services, reviewed a Capital Improvement project list and a draft of the Five-Year Facility Plan.

You may watch the meeting, but please note, due to technical difficulties, the recording starts as the meeting is already in progress.

Review of Jan. 25, 2018, Board meeting

The Board on Jan. 25, 2018, approved the District calendar for 2018-2019. The first day of school will be Wednesday, Aug. 15, with Preview Day on Monday, Aug. 13. For winter break, students will be dismissed early on Dec. 21. Classes are not in session through Jan. 4. School resumes on Jan. 7, 2019.

Spring break is scheduled from March 18-22, 2019. There are three possible make-up days for inclement weather: Feb. 19, March 25, and April 22. The last day of school is an early release on May 22. Any additional make-up days will be added to the end of the school year.

2018-2019 Calendar

The Board also recognized All-State Football Player Zach Starforth. The Board itself was recognized in observance of School Board Recognition Week.

The Board approved a memorandum of understanding with the Missouri Assessment Partnership, as a group of school districts works with the state to develop an assessment to replace the MAP test. The Board also approved a memorandum of understanding with the Missouri Consultants for Education to provide policy services for the District.

Read a recap of the meeting: Board Update

Watch the meeting:


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Board recognized at Jan. 25, 2018, meeting

tt’s School Board Recognition Week, and the Raymore-Peculiar School Board was honored at its Jan. 25 meeting. Schools provided treats and thank you posters to show appreciation.

Front row: Vice President Kim York and Maria Davies. Back row: Ruth Johnson, Susan Edmonsond, Paul Coffman, President Kim Bailey, and Ryan Wescoat.

Board recognizes All-State football player

The Raymore-Peculiar School Board on Jan. 25 recognized Senior Zach Starforth for being selected for the All-State Football Second Team. He is pictured with Board Member Paul Coffman. Zach was also selected for the All-District First Team.

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Review of Jan. 18, 2018, special meeting

At a special meeting on Jan. 18, 2018, the Board approved placing the levy issue, Proposition R-P, on the ballot for the April 3, 2018, election. Ray-Pec is requesting voters to increase the operating tax rate for the District by 75 cents.  At the same time, the debt service tax rate is scheduled to decrease by 30 cents, resulting in a net tax rate increase of 45 cents. A simple majority is required for approval of the issue, which is identified as Proposition R-P. Read more: Proposition R-P

The Board also received information about the Missouri Assessment Partnership, which is a group of Missouri school districts that are working in cooperation with the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to spearhead development of a common interim assessment that ultimately will replace the Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) tests for grades 3-8. At its regular monthly business meeting on Jan. 25, the Board will consider approving a Memorandum of Understanding to join the group. The Board also reviewed the Strategic Plan scorecard. This was the last measurement period for the previous Strategic Plan. A new Strategic Plan was approved in December 2017. A revised scorecard will be developed this year to reflect the new goals.

Watch the meeting:


Image of BOE recognizes All-State Band at Dec mtg

Board recognizes All-State Band students

The School Board on Dec. 21, 2017, recognized students selected for All-State Band. From left: Tammy Yang, first chair mallet and 5th chair timpani; Zane Brown, 7th chair trumpet; Cate Wilhite, 8th chair oboe; and School Board Member Ruth Johnson. Not pictured is Brooke Hord, 3rd chair snare drum.

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Board recognizes Finance Department

The School Board on Dec. 21, 2017, recognized the Finance Department for the District’s receipt of the Meritorious Budget Award for the third consecutive year. From left: Chief Financial Officer Cynthia Byous, Bookkeeper Cheryl Tipton, Finance Specialist Pam Hecker, and School Board Member Ruth Johnson.

Review of Dec. 21, 2017, Board meeting

The School Board on Dec. 21 approved the new Strategic Plan, outlining a five-year road map to the future.

With student success as the primary focus, the plan is organized into three focus areas:

  1. Success Ready Students
  2. High Quality Staff
  3. Financial Responsibility

Each focus area includes a number of strategies to support improvement. You can read the Strategic Plan  or a one-page summary.

Work to revise the Strategic Plan began last summer. During the fall, a committee of approximately 50 community stakeholders led the process. The group included parents, students, community and business leaders, retirees, Board of Education representatives, teachers, support staff, and administrators. A public forum and a community survey were used to prioritize potential strategies, and more than 750 stakeholders provided feedback.

Learn more about the Strategic Plan development.

The Board also heard a report about Special Education, awarded the transportation bid to Apple Bus, and honored All-State Band students and the Finance Department. 

Read the personnel report.

Watch the meeting:

Review of Dec. 14, 2017, work session

The School Board on Dec. 14 reviewed the Strategic Plan draft & discussed resources and a possible levy issue to support District efforts.

Watch the meeting:

Review of Nov. 16, 2017, Board meeting

The School Board on Nov. 16 learned about the District's performance on the Annual Performance Report (APR) from the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). For the second consecutive year, the  District has achieved a 98.9 percent score on the report.

The 2017 report includes student achievement data, graduation rates, attendance rates, and college and career readiness indicators. The report measures how well the District serves students under specific state guidelines and is used to determine a school district's accreditation.

The District received 138.5 out of 140 total points possible on the APR.

Annual Performance Report summary

At the beginning of the meeting, the board recognized the girls cross country team for placing second at the state meet. The board also approved a trail easement and temporary construction easement with the city of Raymore, approved the bus ridership report, and approved an incentive for early notification  of retirements planned by certified staff.

Read a recap of the meeting: Board Update

Watch the meeting:

Review of Nov. 9, 2017, work session

The School Board reviewed assessment data during its Nov. 9 Work Session. The meeting included reports about ACT, MAP (Missouri Assessment Program), EOC (End-of-Course), and NWEA. The Board also learned about Good Neighbors, Strong Community,” a community event planned for Feb. 10,. 2018. You can watch the meeting here:


Board approves audit of District finances

The Board of Education on Oct. 19 approved the audit of the District's finances for the year ended June 30, 2017. Brad Steele, CPA and partner from Westbrook & Co., P.C., presented a summary report. The District had a clean opinion on its financial statements, compliance with laws and regulations, and internal control over financial reporting.

Steele complimented District staff on preparation for the audit and cooperativeness, as well as willingness to implement suggestions for improvement made during the audit. He recognized the Board's commitment to strong financial planning and management.

Read more: Audit report

The Board also heard a report about the guidance and counseling program and a recap of Summer School 2017.

Guidance and Counseling Program Review

Summer School enrollment recap

Summer School financial recap

Cass County Kids First 2018 Draft Legislative Priorities

Read a recap of the meeting: Board Update

Watch the meeting:


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Board honors Teacher Patrick Hemmingsen

High School Science Teacher Patrick Hemmingsen was recognized at the Sept. 28 School Board meeting as one of 38 public educators selected to receive the California Casualty Award for Teaching Excellence. He is pictured here with Board Member Ruth Johnson.

Hemmingsen was given a $650 check and commemorative certificate during a high school faculty meeting on Sept. 19 from California Casualty Field Marketing Manager Rebecca Stumpf.
Hemmingsen will also be honored at the NEA Foundation’s Salute to Excellence in Education Gala to be held in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 9, 2018.

Review of Sept. 28, 2017, Board meeting

The Ray-Pec School Board heard a review of the Buildings and Grounds Department and an update about Public Relations during the regular business meeting on Sept. 28. The Board also recognized Teacher Patrick Hemmingsen (see above). The Board approved a grant application by Ray-Pec High School to seek $4,000 from the Greater Kansas City Restaurant Association for the school’s ProStart program. Read a recap of the meeting: Board Update

ProStart grant application

Facilities and Grounds Program Review

Public Relations Update

Watch the meeting:

Review of Sept. 14, 2017, Board work session

The School Board met in a work session on Sept. 14 to hear updates about strategic planning and early childhood education, to review a Board self-evaluation, and to discuss hardship waiver requests. 

Strategic Planning Process

Early Childhood Program Update

Board Self-Evaluation survey results

Policy JECA - Admission of Students

Determining Residency (Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education)

Watch the meeting:

Review of Aug. 24, 2017, Board meeting

The School Board on Aug. 24 approved the 2017 tax levy rate at $4.9122, a decrease from the rate of $5.0397 that had been in place since 2004.

The 2017 rate includes an operating levy of $3.5739 and a debt service levy of $1.3383 per $100 of assessed value. The approval followed a public hearing.

The rate is calculated based on the assessed valuation of real estate and personal property in the District. The rate decreased to offset increases in property values due to reassessment.

The Board also approved the 2017-2018 Assessment Plan and heard a report about the District wellness program. Read a recap of the meeting: Board update

Watch the meeting:

Board thanks KCP&L

The School Board on Aug. 25 thanked KCP&L for its work at Shull Early Learning Center. KCP&L worked with the District as it upgraded equipment and buried electrical lines near the school's playground. Board Vice President Kim York is pictured with Carter Morrison, field construction supervisor, who works out of the KCP&L Belton office.

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Review of July 27, 2017, Board meeting

Lots of finishing details are taking place to complete the construction and renovation projects and prepare for the opening of school. This was the message that Patrick Smith of incite Design Studio shared with the Board during a construction update on July 27.

The Board also heard a review of health services, approved School Resource Officer agreements with the cities of Peculiar and Raymore, and approved the revised 2017-2018 budget.

Read a recap of the meeting: Board Update

2017-2018 Budget

Budget Preview (one-page fast facts)

Construction update

Health Services Program Review

Watch the meeting:


Board recognizes IB Diploma graduates

The School Board on July 27 recognized students who graduated in May 2017 with an International Baccalaureate Diploma. This was the first year for Ray-Pec High School to have student graduate with an IB Diploma.


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Pictured, from left: Connor Woodward, Malone Blaich, Lilly Carroll, Zachary Newman, Benjamin Osborne, Dalton Gilmore, Austin Moulder, Jacob Shriner, and Board Member Maria Davies. Not pictured: Grant Bosley, Jordan Doss, Samantha Heggem, Jesse Turos, and Audrey Warters.

Board recognizes Readers Theatre state champions

The Board on July 27 honored Ray-Pec Theatre students for winning the state championship in Readers Theatre for the performance of "Me and Earl and the Dying Girl" at the 2017 Missouri State High School Activities Association speech, debate, and theatre tournament earlier this year.

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Pictured, from left: Macee Blair, Tevin Chavez, Erica Theiling, Austin Moulder, Ian Haston, Kelley Shanahan, Riley Linn, Valiante Waltz, and Board Member Maria Davies.

Not pictured: Isabelle Burton, Trevor Diepenbrock, Peter Dyreng, Courtney Farr, Parker Hauptmann, India Kittrell, Noah Lampson, Cameron Perry, Dalton Russell, Allison Trageser, and Song Waltz.

Board recognizes Dan Garrison for selection as Regional Teacher of the Year

The Board on July 27 recognized Teacher Dan Garrison for being selected as a Regional Teacher of the Year. He is among 32 Regional Teachers of the Year competing for the statewide award.

Garrison has been teaching 18 years in the Ray-Pec School District. For the 2017-2018 school year, he will teach 8th grade social studies at Ray-Pec South Middle School.

He is pictured with Board Member Maria Davies.

BOE recognizes Dan Garrison_edited
Board retreat July 18 2017 a web
Board retreat July 18 2017 web

Board continues planning during July 18 retreat

The School Board discussed a variety of topics during its second daylong retreat of the summer. After running out of time on June 14 to cover the desired topics, the Board reconvened on July 18 to:

  • Review a board self-evaluation and discuss effective governance practices.
  • Examine an informational binder that includes essential information for Board members.
  • Discuss results of the parent/patron and staff spring surveys.
  • Compare data from Ray-Pec with other KC metro school districts. The data included tax rates, test scores, and salaries.
  • Discuss the process to update the District's Strategic Plan, which is nearing the end of its five-year cycle.
  • Share suggestions to increase community engagement between the District and various stakeholder groups. Board members are interested in playing an active role in this engagement process.
  • Discuss grading and reporting for grades 7-12.
  • Review the District's 5-year Technology Plan.
  • Discuss advocacy.

The Board approved a contract with Sunbelt Staffing to provide occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy, or other assistance for the 2017-2018 school year. The Board also approved an adjustment to the Fiscal Year 2017 budget.

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Thank you!

School Board President Kim Bailey, standing second from right, thanks employees of the Buildings and Grounds Department for all of their work - especially this summer with extra construction, renovation, and moving work taking place. During a daylong School Board retreat on July 18, Board members ate lunch with the Buildings and Grounds Department.

Standing, from left: Board Member Paul Coffman, Board Member Maria Davies, Board Member Ryan Wescoat, Board Member Susan Edmonsond, Board Member Ruth Johnson, Board Vice President Kim York, Bailey, and Superintendent Dr. Kari Monsees.