Norfolk Public Schools administration building NDN

Norfolk Public Schools students and staff will be required to follow specific guidelines relating to COVID-19 during the upcoming school year.

The NPS board of education approved two supplemental COVID-19 sections to be added to the student and staff handbooks during its regular Monday meeting.

“This handbook supplement was recommended by the Perry Law Firm to address situations unique to the 2020-21 school year due to COVID-19," said Jami Jo Thompson, district superintendent. "It includes rules and expectations that are intended to ensure the health and safety of our students, staff and community."

Each staff member, student and the student's parent or guardian will be required to sign the last page of the guideline supplement, which outlines each COVID-19 policy in detail.

Some of the guidelines include the requirement for staff to wear face masks or shields in the yellow and orange levels depicted on the Elkhorn Logan Valley Public Health Department COVID-19 risk dial, while students have to wear them only in the orange level. 

Staff mask violations can be reported to administration, according to the supplement documents. If the district requires students to wear masks and they refuse, they could face discipline, including suspension or expulsion.

The handbook supplements also outline policy regarding staff and student COVID-19 exposures. No one will be allowed on school grounds if they have been exposed to the coronavirus.

If students come to school without the students or parents notifying NPS staff they have been exposed, the students also could be disciplined, including suspension or expulsion. 

A staff member's failure to promptly notify administration of a potential exposure could result in discipline, according to the document. 

Staff and students also are required to be honest about their COVID-19 symptoms or exposures.

Additionally, staff are strongly encouraged to follow local health guidelines while off-duty. Employees could be subject to discipline if they are "unable to perform his or her job because of choices made while off duty" or if they intentionally impose their own self-quarantine.

When parents sign the document, they also agree that they are accepting there will be health and safety risks, including the possibility of contracting COVID-19, when sending their child to school.

"These are working documents and subject to change as ELVPHD makes changes for us," said Bob Waite, board member. "They could be different tomorrow."

During Monday's meeting, the board also approved a 3.32% package increase for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade administrative staff, including the superintendent, for 2020-21. The package increase is the same increase approved for all of the district's other employee groups. 

Here are some of the base administrative employee salary placement ranges:

— Elementary principal: $92,250-$98,250

— Middle school/junior high school principal: $100,250-$106,250

— High school principal: $114,250-$120,250

— District administrators: $118,250-$124,250

— Associate superintendent: $123,250-$129,250

The superintendent has a $218,000 contracted salary.


Norfolk Public Schools Board of Education

The Norfolk Public Schools Board of Education met for its monthly meeting Monday at 5:30 p.m. at the central administration office, 512 Phillip Ave.

The meeting lasted 39 minutes.

Board members present: Arnie Robinson, Sandy Wolfe, Tammy Day, Patti Gubbels and Bob Waite. Others in attendance: Two from the media, several district administrators and one member of the public.

ITEMS OF INTEREST

— Administrators approved a 3.32% increase in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade administration staff, including the superintendent, compensation packages and contracts.

— Board members accepted a company bid to replace the Norfolk High chilling system.

— The board of education approved staff and student supplemental handbooks that include additional guidelines and clarification for COVID-19 policies.

ACTION ITEMS

— Approved the 2020-21 substitute teacher handbook.

— Approved the 2020-21 students handbook: COVID supplement.

— Approved the 2020-21 staff handbook: COVID supplement.

— Approved the revised 2020-21 Little Panthers Preschool calendar.

— Approved up to $2.5 million in additional claims to close out the 2019-20 school year.

— Accepted the proposal for the replacement of the Norfolk High chilling system.

— Approved the 2020-21 administrative compensation package and contracts, including the superintendent.

— Approved the second and final reading of board policy 6250 related to grades.

— Approved the second and final reading of board policy 6111 related to the classroom environment.

— Approved the second and final reading of board policies 1040 (annual report), 5506 (safe pupil transportation plan), and 6117 (ceremonies).

— Suspended board policy 5007 related to foreign exchange students for the 2020-21 school year.

FUTURE MEETINGS: The next meeting of the board of education will be Thursday, Aug. 27, at noon. The next regular meeting will be Monday, Sept. 14, at 5:30 p.m.

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