Bessemer School Board meeting last night

Written by on February 26, 2019

BESSEMER — Bessemer Area Schools battle with school bus repairs came up at several points during the board of education’s regular monthly meeting.The matter first came up during review of standard monthly financial reports. Board member Dick Matrella questioned source of more than $6,000 in bus repair accrued in January. Matrella asked if the costs were associated with keeping old buses running. Business Manager Chris Bergquist said the expenses were spread across several buses, not only the oldest in the fleet. During her administrative report, Bergquist said there are currently three problematic buses including a bus purchased in 2014 with a blown head gasket, a bus bought in 2015 with a faulty turbocharger that remains under warranty and 2012 bus with an as yet undiagnosed failure. The district has purchased several used buses using general fund money in recent years. The board of education has maintained a clear stance that school buses are an important aspect of student safety. Funds for school bus replacement included in several failed bond proposals. Superintendent Dave Wineburner said replacing aging buses will remain a priority in budgeting.

In other action, the board:

—Approved the German Club trip to Europe from March 29 through April 7.

—Discussed plans for anonymous staff input in the upcoming superintendent survey.

—Heard the district had used its maximum nine emergency closure days and would need to make up time for additional closures.

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